Boston Bruins March 2024 Teacher of the Month

Future GoalsTM Program

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Boston Bruins March 2024 Teacher of the Month


Kayla Pontbriant


North Cumberland Middle School

Classroom Team:

Tell us about yourself!

I am a teacher at North Cumberland Middle School. When I started in 2009 I taught Grade 8 Math & Algebra 1 for 8 years. In 2016, I moved into a new role as a STEM teacher. Since then, I have been working on expanding our school’s STEM program and giving students more opportunities to learn coding! Recently, I signed up to teach programming classes at a local community group to expand access to STEM programs outside of the school day.

My favorite thing about what I do is helping students learn that they are capable of doing hard things! The projects we work on in class (creating a game or building & programming a robotic race car) can take weeks to build. Seeing the excitement and sense of accomplishment students have upon completing these projects is what motivates me to keep teaching!

Who is your favorite NHL® player and why?

The leadership skills Chara demonstrated during his years with the Bruins (and other organizations) is admirable. We talk a lot in school about what it means to be a good leader and role model and I believe Chara is a great example of that. He was always seen building his team up when they were feeling down or giving congratulations and high-five’s when good work was done! (Current – Marchand.. good leaders should also make you laugh!)

What is your favorite part of the Future Goals™program? How do you see STEM in the game of hockey?

I love any application of STEM in real-world scenarios. The most common question I get from students is “When are we ever going to use this?”. Being able to not only tell them, but then have them practice the real-world application is a valuable lesson. STEM is everywhere in hockey, from math angles to make shots on the net to the science of how cold the ice is and how that effects how well you can skate and the way the puck moves. Engineering also comes into play when you consider helmet design

If you played hockey, what position would you play?

I would play goalie. In a way, I feel like that is my position at school. Each day I am coming to work to try and help my team (my students) win that day’s game (learning something new in STEM). At the same time, I am there to support them when they are having trouble and there to help build them back up again. The thought of hockey pucks flying at me at some outrageous speed does scare me a little though.