Economics teacher wins award from UC

Frank Back uses current events as teachable moments in his high school classroom.

LEBANON — For the last couple of years, reports on the national economy have provided fresh, teachable moments in Frank Back’s classroom just about every day.

Back, 42, has taught economics at Lebanon High School for seven years. He was recently selected as the Economics Teacher of the Year by the University of Cincinnati Economics Center.

“Every day you open up the paper and there are things that are relevant to these students as consumers,” Back said. “We can draw on those lessons and drive home the major points of economics.”

A graduate of Middletown High School and Cedarville University, Back credits his high school and college teachers for influencing his career choice. He said one of his proudest accomplishments is being the first in his family to graduate high school.

Back said one of the staples in his teaching method is getting to know his students, starting the first day of class with a questionaire.

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“It gives me a window into who they are, where they come from, what’s important to them,” he said. “That’s probably the biggest way I make connections.”

Back, who has experience working in private business, stays informed through professional development and keeps his students motivated, in part, by participating in the regional competition — Stock Market Game, said John Morris, Economics Center for Education & Research Director of Education.

“While some experienced teachers become comfortable in their teaching strategy, Frank is always working to improve his knowledge base and ability to lead discussion with students,” Morris said. “By staying informed, Frank’s classes never go out of date.”

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