Dr. Suckley's Autobiography
Life began in 1942 in Cleveland Ohio and at the age of four our family moved to a small town in northwestern Ohio named Wauseon. My brothers and I attended public school and while in high school I decided to become a science teacher due to a science teacher who made science very uninspiring. My brother and I did quite a bit of experimenting as youngsters and during one of our experiments we almost blew the foundation off of our home. Boy, did we have a lot to learn as future science teachers.
After graduation from high school attended Bowling Green State University earning a B. S. degree. Upon graduation from college, in 1964, taught science and coached in Pettisville, Ohio, (another very small town.) After teaching for a year married my best friend Pat, and in 1965 we moved to Warren, Michigan to begin our teaching careers in the Warren Woods School System. During the time in Warren Woods I was appointed science department head at Hickory Junior High and then science department head at Warren Woods High School. During that time we enrolled at Eastern Michigan University where we both earned a Master’s degree and I earned an Educational Specialist Degree in the areas of physical and biological sciences. In 1970 I was asked to join the faculty at Macomb Community College and in 1972 completed a Doctorate from Wayne State University in Instructional Technology.
In 1988 the NSF selected me to be trained and certified as an “Operation Physics” trainer and in 1994 became certified as a “Constructing Physics Understanding” trainer. This training created an additional interest in providing support for teachers and have presented over 200 workshops in Physical Science at the National, State, and local level. The specific content areas of the workshops which are designed to identify important concepts and eliminate misconceptions are: Measurement, Magnetism, Light, Electricity, Energy, Motion, Heat, Astronomy, Sound, Color, Fluids, Matter, and Simple Machines
I believe that science is a process that begins with a problem and involves the search for information and the appropriate application of that information to solve the problems. There will be many times that the information will not be perfect but it will show trends or directions that will lead to the best solution. This process can be compared to solving a puzzle, or riddle or your favorite mystery.
In 2002 I retired from Macomb Community College although continued teaching online courses until 2014. My teaching experience included Physical and Environmental Science at middle, high school and university. While at MCC I authored two science textbooks, Analyzing the Physical Universe, and Physics Is FUNdamental. During my time at MCC I was asked to teach classes for the biology, chemistry and business department as well as the Manager of Academic Computing.
Received four awards for teaching excellence. In 1969 “Teacher of the Year” Warren Woods Middle School. In 2001 the Metropolitan Detroit Science Teachers Association's "Outstanding Science Educators Award". In 2002 the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development's "Teaching Excellence Award". In 2015 the Metropolitan Detroit Science Teachers Association's “Ellen Daniel-Jones Distinguished Service Award”.
My wife Pat teaching career was as a special education consultant. We have two sons, Mark and Matthew and six grandchildren who keep us busy. In 2005 we built a home on the top of a glacial moraine which overlooks a creek and am currently writing to you from there.