As part of our ongoing series Meet Our GDS Faculty and Staff, we are excited to present: Meet Greg Dallinger!
Read the Q&A below to learn more about Greg.
Primary Role: High School science teacher
Years at GDS: Six years down and halfway through year seven.
What do you love about GDS?
I love that at GDS everyone is a nerd about something. I love that I can see kids one day playing a varsity athletics game and the next day they are playing chess in the Forum or singing in the choir. I love that I have students that are every bit as talented in chemistry as they are in painting or dance. I love that our community was as passionate about the World Cup Final as they were about the Senate vote for a Supreme Court Justice. I love that you can be your full authentic self.
Why do you teach?
I love teaching because I love chemistry, and I get to share that with students every day at work. Chemistry is critical to so many aspects of life, and I think it is essential for everyone to have at least a basic understanding of how chemistry works in order to be a well-informed citizen. This is why having a good education in chemistry, even if you only take one class in high school, is so important. Plus, chemistry is just fun!
A favorite lesson to teach?
I love teaching Molecular Orbital Theory*, Acid-Base Equilibria**, and Stoichiometry***.
Your work style in three words?
Challenging. Passionate. Supportive.
Other GDS activities or roles that community members may not know about?
I run the scorer's table for home basketball games; I am the advisor of the Sports Analysis Club; and I was the advisor of the Doctor Who Club.
A top hope/wish for your students and/or colleagues?
I hope my students will find a love of learning how things work and try to unpack a deeper understanding of the world.
I am an avid supporter of Liverpool Football Club, the Chicago Bears, and the Chicago Cubs. As a Hoosier, I love all things basketball (watching, playing, etc). I also enjoy cycling, hiking, fixing things around the house, and figuring out how things work. I love my AV setup for watching movies and sports. I love making coffee with different equipment (Chemex, Moka pot, etc).
A few favorites…?
My favorite movie is a tie between Hoosiers (1986) and Transformers: The Movie (1986). Note: This is an animated film from the 1980s, NOT the Micheal Bay monstrosity! This, for me, is a very important distinction. My favorite book is A Clockwork Orange. My favorite recipe is spaetzle. My favorite video game is Final Fantasy VII.
Tell us about your pets.
I have two guinea pigs and two cats. They get along better than you would think. One of the cats treats the guinea pigs as if they were kittens, and the other cat is afraid of them.
One thing about yourself your students/colleagues/others probably don't know?
Growing up I was known more for dance than chemistry. I was in three professional ballet productions before I was 16, and I was the first male member of a high school dance team in the state of Indiana. I was also an undefeated college tennis player (3-0 career record at the College of Wooster).
One thing on your life "bucket list" you've already accomplished?
Teaching chemistry with my Dad at Wabash College in my hometown of Crawfordsville, Indiana.
One thing on your life “bucket list” you have yet to accomplish?
Visiting my grandfather's hometown of Lampoldshausen, Germany.
With a tip from Greg, we reached out to hear what a colleague had to say...
High School science teacher Polly Martin said, “Greg steps up every time he is asked. He helps with class coverage when one of us is out, he is the first to volunteer when we need help setting up a lab or just need help with a task. He has high standards and he encourages his students to rise to those standards, something that they appreciate by the end of the year. He has a great sense of humor, always wears fun pants on "fun pants Fridays", and takes the time to listen to both students and adults. He is a pleasure to have as the colleague that teaches the other half of the sections of Chemistry I Extended because it is easy to bounce ideas off of each other and that results in a better curriculum. He makes coffee for our office in the morning and even waits until we are here before starting so that it is fresh.”
Assistant athletic director Pam Stanfield said, “Greg is a talented and enthusiastic sports announcer for GDS. He brings a high level of energy to the games he covers and has a deep understanding and passion for basketball. He makes the basketball games exciting for fans. Greg's voice definitely impacts the overall experience for the players and fans!”
*The tendency of atoms to combine, forming molecular orbital arrangements in which electrons move in different atomic orbitals and associate with different nuclei.
**Acid base equilibria describes proton transfer between molecules, with an acid being a proton donor and a base being a proton receptor. These reactions are critical for understanding both chemistry and biology.
***Stoichiometry is the quantitative relationship between compounds in a balanced chemical equation. For those who have nearly no memory of studies in chemistry, stoichiometry involves calculations with the use of mole, which is neither animal nor food.