GT Student Spotlight: Adham Ibrahim


GT Student Adham Ibrahim and his mentor, Mr. Bermel

Miranda Kawiecki, Editor in Chief

Senior and Academy student Adham Ibrahim is currently an assistant teacher to Mr. Bermel for his GT independent study. He helps Mr. Bermel teach Calculus BC, taking the time with his mentor to explore teaching styles and alternative testing. Adham has contributed changes to the grading, as there are no longer four tests a quarter, but rather, one test, three quizzes, and one project. Adham’s main focus is the project aspect of this schedule. “I noticed there was a hard disconnect between people that already had it [calculus], and the people who didn’t,” he said. “I encourage mentorship as I think students should and can learn from each other. Projects enable more collaboration.” 

Adham’s projects expose students to theoretical math concepts outside of the textbook problems one sees in class and inevitably, on the next test. So, what does one of his projects look like? As he described, groups of students think about a math problem outside of class, a real-world conflict. An example of this is building a rollercoaster. The student must think about the rollercoaster like a function, considering its curves and slopes. Rather than telling the students how to solve the problem, they are questioned and must figure it out for themselves.  Essentially, the project is, as he puts it into words, math research. Instead of looking at math from one perspective, Adham encourages creative thinking. 

Adham is a former student of Mr. Bermel, who inspired him to take on an approach to teaching that keeps students “thinking on their feet.” In Calculus, he and his mentor would have many conversations regarding math. Bermel would offer him things to think about and the GT student expressed his appreciation for being treated as an equal. Eventually, Adham reached out to Mr. Bermel with an interest in teaching and generating class content. 

In the future, Adham aspires to teach in some capacity. His GT independent study allows him to discover his own philosophy of teaching, and he intends to build upon the knowledge he has gained from his studies of the subject. In the near future, Adham would like to advocate for changes in the math curriculum for fellow Academy students so that they too can have a more positive and tactile experience with mathematics.

“People hate math classes. People would love math if they were taught differently if it was less about memorization and more about understanding,” shared Adham Ibrahim. “The beauty of math is hidden away from us.”