Get to know the BrainPOP Educators team!
Andrew Gardner, Vice President • Professional Learning
What are your top 5 BrainPOP Movies? – Media Literacy, Critical Reasoning, 9/11, Fact/Opinion, Ethics
What is your favorite GameUp Game? – I love Ayiti, The Cost of Life as I think it takes full advantage of the affordances of games to illustrate complex systems, teach values and sad truths.
What’s the best thing about working at BrainPOP? – It’s the relationships! The members of our team are full of clever grit (as you can tell from these descriptions), and we connect with tons of educators around the world and help them get more out of BrainPOP!
What did you do before joining BrainPOP? – I was a teacher for 12 years – Pre-k, 1st grade, 2nd grade home room, and a 3rd – 5th grade tech integrator all here in NYC.
Who was your favorite teacher? Why? – My favorite teacher was my high school advisor and “computer proficiency” teacher, Steve Bergen. In high school I struggled terribly with organization and concentration and, as an advisor, Steve helped me build those “soft skills.” We took a weekly walk around the neighborhood where we would just talk about stuff other than school, he was hilarious and loved Larry Bird and the number 33. After college, I re-connected with Steve as he was teaching technology in NYC, and we became professional colleagues. Steve passed away early in 2016 and I miss him.
Antonio Perez, Coordinator • BrainPOP Educators
What are your top 5 BrainPOP Movies? – Dark Matter, Black Holes, Isaac Newton, Nikola Tesla, and Latin Music
What is your favorite GameUp Game? – Time Zone X
What’s the best thing about working at BrainPOP? – The best thing about working at BrainPOP is representing a product that helps so many students and teachers. BrainPOP is the first place I have worked where I am proud and believe in the product. You don’t realize how excited our users are until you meet them, and it’s what drives me forward to help make our product great.
What did you do before joining BrainPOP? – I followed an interesting path to get to BrainPOP, but I will spare the details. I graduated undergrad in 2011 and had a number of retail jobs and one stint as an AM Radio Salesman. In 2013 I joined the BrainPOP Team as a temp in our Subscriber Relations department (you may have spoken to me on the phone!) and did that for 3 years until July when I became a part of the Educators Team.
Who was your favorite teacher? Why? – My favorite teacher was my 12th grade physics and meteorology teacher, Mr. Brian Sullivan. He made physics my favorite topic in science by making it fun and very easy to learn. He also was one of those teachers that students loved to hang around with, so he would be very open and honest with us. His class was one of my best experiences with a teacher and the sole reason I took physics as an undergrad major.
Bev Fine, Editorial and Outreach Director • BrainPOP ESL
What are your top 5 BrainPOP Movies? – BrainPOP ESL L3U6L4: Egg on Your Face, BrainPOP ESL L1U1L3: What Is It?, BrainPOP: Latin Music, The Beatles, Leonardo daVinci
What is your favorite GameUp Game? – Sizing up the Universe
What’s the best thing about working at BrainPOP? – The best thing about working at BrainPOP is interacting every day with all the smart, fun, and creative people that work there.
What did you do before joining BrainPOP? – I taught ELLs and was a teacher educator in Methods ESL and Cross Cultural Education. And right before joining BrainPOP, I was teaching English in the Marshall Islands!
Who was your favorite teacher? Why? – My favorite teacher was Mr. Chabon, a social studies teacher at Jamaica High School in NY. Students felt valued in his class, and were encouraged to voice their opinions, even if they weren’t mainstream.
Carrie Mignano, Director • Educator Outreach
What are your top 5 BrainPOP Movies? – Analog and Digital Recording, Theme, The Beatles, Titanic, Country Music
What is your favorite GameUp Game? – Do I Have a Right?
What’s the best thing about working at BrainPOP? – Do I have to name just one?! The company is full of creative, funny, and super smart people, and I love working with them all. I also feel very fortunate to work with and support all of the amazing educators and CBEs we’ve connected with around the world.
What did you do before joining BrainPOP? – Before starting at BrainPOP, I taught elementary school in NJ. Over the years, I taught 1st, 3rd, and 4th grade, and can honestly say I enjoyed all grades and the unique experiences that came along with each age group.
Who was your favorite teacher? Why? – This is a tough one as I’ve had several incredible teachers that inspired me to become an educator myself! If I had to pick, I’d say Mrs. Jones (1st grade) and Mrs. Baum (5th grade). Both teachers made each and every day fun and exciting, even the “boring stuff.” They were patient, kind, and it was very clear they were passionate about teaching.
Jackie Glassman, Senior Writer
What are your top 5 BrainPOP Movies? – Presidential Election (the new one), Theme, Lord of the Flies, Ocean Habitats (BP Jr.), Rosa Parks (BP Jr.)
What is your favorite GameUp Game? – all Time Zone X games
What’s the best thing about working at BrainPOP? – So many things! Working with super smart, passionate people keeps me on my toes and energized to make our content the very best it can be. And, of course the product itself. I love when people ask me where I work because the reaction is is also “I LOVE BrainPOP!”
What did you do before joining BrainPOP? – I’ve been working in the educational publishing/technology business my entire career. Before BrainPOP I worked at Scholastic for many years and then as a freelance writer/editor for a broad range of companies and organizations including Sesame Workshop, Nickelodeon, and the American Museum of Natural History.
Who was your favorite teacher? Why? – My fourth grade teacher Mr. Donnellan. Mr. D thought outside the box and made learning fun. He got rid of the rows of desks and encouraged cooperative learning and flipped classroom long before its time. Oh… and he had a great sense of humor!
Jessica Millstone, Director of Engagement
What are your top 5 BrainPOP Movies? – Ada Lovelace, Hackers, Wrinkle in Time, September 11, and (of course) Pirates
What is your favorite GameUp Game? – Slice Fractions
What’s the best thing about working at BrainPOP? – Being part of making a product that is as useful and beloved by teachers all over the world as BrainPOP. And I get to work with all the creative people who make it happen!
What did you do before joining BrainPOP? – I’ve always helped teachers use technology in the classroom, mostly recently through my research on games and learning for Sesame Workshop and working in teacher education.
Who was your favorite teacher? Why? – My all-time favorite teacher was Hal Lederman, my 7th and 8th grade social studies teacher at Green Acres in Rockville, MD. He introduced me to the idea of using games for learning with his role-play simulation of the 1929 stock market crash, and his sitcom-like exams starring all the members of our class were always something to look forward to. I saw him recently and he is still teaching!
Robert Miller, Lead Learner
What are your top 5 BrainPOP Movies? Lewis and Clark, Andrew Jackson, Theme, Conservation of Mass, Sharks
What is your favorite GameUp Game? Guts n’ Bolts
What’s the best thing about working at BrainPOP? It is so inspiring and motivating to work with a team of such smart and creative people! What thrill to work in a collaborative environment and to create content for students and tools for teachers to make a classroom engaging and enriching.
What did you do before joining BrainPOP? I taught fourth and fifth grade for twenty-one years (and used BrainPOP for fifteen of those years!) in Volusia County Schools, Florida. My favorite subjects were science and social studies, teaching with loads of inquiry and simulations.
Who was your favorite teacher? Why? Ms. Gamble, eleventh grade – advanced biology. This class was all hands-on labs and dissections. There were rarely any answers given by Ms. Gamble, only a shoulder shrug to prompt us to answer our own questions or collaborate with a partner. She was ready with a prompt or question to spark research or connection.