Meet Ms. Benson – By: Scott Sung and Tristen De Varona

Ms. Grace Benson is one of the new faces at Oakland Mills, and even with the limited state of digital learning, her vibrant personality is able to shine through. She currently teaches chemistry and physics and is very experienced in the field of science as a whole. She came to Oakland Mills because of the shorter distance from her home. She has come to appreciate and respect the community that she has encountered and has embraced it throughout the couple months she has been at Oakland Mills.

During her high school years, she was not that interested in any of the subjects that were being taught. This was until she started to take Chemistry, which began to grow her interest in science. She then ended up going to the University of Maryland to continue her passion in science as an undergraduate. During her years there, she worked a multitude of different jobs, such as a librarian and a waitress, this was in addition to being a student trying to make a career out of chemistry. She became dissatisfied with the trial and error of performing labs which led her to distance herself from science overall which entailed the mundane repetition of trying the same experiment over and over to mostly dissatisfying results. Ms. Benson was then looking to pursue a career in something else other than being a scientist. One day a college friend gave Ms.Benson the recommendation to become a teacher because of how engaged she was with the students in the classroom. So, Ms. Benson went back to the University of Maryland for her graduate degree to pursue this goal. Ms. Benson then started her journey as an educator in Carroll County at Century High School as a science teacher. She came to Oakland Mills after signing an open contract with Howard County to be the new Chemistry teacher here. 

Overall, Ms. Benson loves teaching both chemistry and physics, but prefers teaching physics because of the engagement with students in the many different activities that physics allows. Ms. Benson has been inspired by students to continue her job in teaching because of their dedication to showing up to classes and completing the assignments. She also encourages students to stay connected with their teacher so that the student won’t fall behind in the class.

Beyond the classroom, Ms. Benson spends most of her time reading, exercising, and/or listening to music. She usually reads from three books a day and has recently taken up the practice of listening to audiobooks. This particular practice has allowed Ms. Benson to do chores more successfully such as washing the dishes and vacuuming. Listening and reading books has helped her to focus on work, as well as being able to enjoy the content of the books she’s reading at the time. She also loves to go on hikes through nature as well as enjoying the company of her friends at the park. Ms. Benson is constantly listening to music, whether it’s in the classroom, at home, or during her own time. Her favorite type of music is early 2000’s pop punk, and she mainly listens to the music she listened to when she was in high school.  

Ms. Benson looks forward to teaching Chemistry this year and is determined to help her students succeed even with the current state of the world. When we return to the building, please stop by and welcome Ms. Benson to OM!

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