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Don Leach began teaching Psychology at George Washington High School in San Francisco in 1973. After starting a section of AP Psychology in 1995, he taught two sections of AP and two sections of regular Psychology until he retired in 2003. Now he goes back every two or three weeks to teach three AP classes introducing the new unit with activities, presenting crucial vocabulary, and giving tips on how to score high on that section of the AP exam.
Since 1998 until the present he has been an AP Psych reader and presenter of College Board weekend workshops and summer institutes. Don received his B.A. and secondary credential from the University of San Francisco, where he returned once to teach a section on Adolescence. San Francisco State University awarded him an M.A. in 1975 and the Golden Torch Award as Educator of the Year in 2003. Teaching and learning has always been one of the greatest gifts and joys in Don’s life, second only to his family.
Don has never fully retired from teaching. From 2003 to 2006 he was the Tobacco Use Prevention Educator for Alameda County, setting up and presenting anti-tobacco fairs in all the county high schools. Since 1973, he has been conducting smoking cessation classes for Kaiser HMO. Michelle Kyung, whom he mentored and who took over his AP Psych classes, has asked him to introduce each new unit by demonstrating lessons, giving a list of tips and terms to help the students master the new unit’s content. From working with Ms. Kyung and her classes he has learned even more about what it takes to be a successful AP psychology teacher. He finds the most exciting part of every summer institute and weekend workshop is when teachers share their best practices because there is always more to learn about effective teaching. Please feel free to bring any of your best practices for teaching psychology.
When Don is not teaching, he, with his wife of 51 years, enjoy helping to raise their fifteen year old granddaughter, Gracie. Don gives lessons to Gracie’s science class on the brain and sensation/perception. Each year Don and Marcie take a major trip. Last year they went to Holland and Belgium. In February they plan to go to Cuba. ou can e-mail Don at firstname.lastname@example.org or call +1-415-259-7329 if you have any questions or concerns.