Jeff Burgard

Science Curriculum Design Consultant

Jeff spent half of his college life as an engineering major before finding a passion for teaching. With a certificate from California State University Sacramento in 1992, Jeff began teaching middle school Language Arts and Social Studies to 6th graders in Redding Ca. 

Over the next 11 years, he transitioned to 7th grade Math and then finally to 8th grade Science – coaching wrestling, track and volleyball along the way. Jeff spent summers working as a whitewater raft guide, on Northern California Rivers, and he developed the “River Awareness” course. This course took place on a whitewater river and incorporated activities about regional settler and native history, riparian botany, aquatic insects, gold mining, river hydraulics and basic river guiding.  In 1999, Jeff authored the book “Continuous Improvement in the Science Classroom” and began part time consulting work. He backpacked around the world to visit schools and interview teachers in 15 countries, as well as conduct workshops and seminars in Nepal, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, Australia and Indonesia. Upon his return, he went to work as the sole middle school teacher at a natural sciences-based charter school. 

After running the program for two years, Jeff and his wife started a consulting business to teach a philosophy for increasing student learning and enthusiasm called Gateway to Mastery – based on his book. In 2008, after 6 years of conducting PD workshops and seminars in 27 states, Jeff went back to teaching 8th grade science in Sammamish, WA. In the 12 years since, he obtained National Board certification, led his school's sustainability in the curriculum initiative, and obtained his Masters of Education in Educating for Sustainability.

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