Ally O’Rourke-Barrett is Grayson’s Director of Projects, a position that allows her to merge her love for creating curriculum with interdisciplinary instruction and student-centered lessons. She has her B.A. in English Language and Literature from Smith College and has completed a Fellowship at the Belin-Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development. Before joining Grayson, Ms. O taught history and English at the Pre-Collegiate Learning Center in East Brunswick, New Jersey.
At Grayson, Ms. O has created and taught amazing curriculum units, including a mission to Mars, Eurosim (an immersive long-term role-playing game through medieval Europe), an alternate reality game for remote learners, constructing escape rooms, and reconstructing the Antikythera mechanism; other units on the Roman Empire, WWI and the birth of the modern world, and spice trade cooking adventures have also been memorable learning experiences for her students. Collaborations with the International Space Station, experts in cryptography, architecture, design, and historical reenactors bring fierce engagement and authentic experiences to her classes.
Ms. O serves as Grayson’s site director for the Mastery Transcript Consortium. She has led a few regionally recognized First Lego League (FLL) teams and was honored with an Outstanding Mentor Award in the FLL southeast Philadelphia region.
As a recent transplant to Fairmount, Ms. O is thrilled to have the Art Museum and neoclassical architecture in her neighborhood (when she isn’t riding her desk cycle on Zoom!).