A Look into the Universe with Mr. Honzel


Zachary Hirst

Brandon Honzel with his Natural Resources class at the Jocko Fish Hatchery in Arlee

Zachary Kirst, Contributor

The time: 7:00am. Location: Big Sky High School. In Room 52, Mr. Honzel preps for a good day with his variety of science classes. Some lead to loud explosions, and some even lead to seniors getting admitted into U of M.
Brandon Honzel is a very important person within the community of people at Big Sky High School. He is not just a teacher, but one that teaches with a purpose. His purpose is to guide others to explore the universe.
Honzel doesn’t teach the incoming scientists of today’s world for money, fame, or to leave a legacy. Honzel’s motto is to make sure that there shall be no damage done. “My motto is ‘Do No Harm,’” Honzel says about his impact on Missoula since teaching science here in 1994.
Growing up in Helena, Montana; he liked to play outside as a child. Honzel found enjoyment in flipping logs and exploring the little aspects of nature all on his own, as well as hanging out with the friends he’s had since going to Capitol High School. With his mother being a German teacher at the time, Honzel wanted to pursue teaching as a career. And what better way to do that than share the same enjoyment in science that he had at a young age with those around him?
Honzel’s goal isn’t necessarily to directly inspire, but to aid others in exploring the fields of science. He teaches various science classes, plenty fitting to each student’s needs. Those classes including APS, Theory of Knowledge, as well as Natural History.
“APS is a class where you can ask your own questions and discover the universe” says Honzel. In APS, or Advanced Problems in Science, student’s goal is to create an in depth experiment about whatever they want.
With the school providing money, Honzel is willing to help set up extreme of the extreme experiments for his students. One student’s study of human cells and creating an anti-cancer drug charmed the professors. Human cell experiments are not done very often in high school after all!
One of this teacher’s recommendations for classes within any student’s given four-year-plan is to try IB TOK, or International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge, because of all the benefits that one can gain when taking the class. “[I think] it’s good to take philosophy classes,” says Ben, a junior in Mr. Honzel’s class.
Even though Brandon Honzel loves him some quality teaching time, he won’t plan on teaching forever. If he is needed elsewhere in the scientific community, he’ll go. When he wakes up and feels like he can’t teach, he won’t. One of the last things on Mr. Honzel’s priorities list is to be one of those “old cranky teachers.”
Brandon Honzel is a science teacher ready to teach for the goodness of guidance in exploring the universe, and hopefully a student like you will stop by and try APS or IB TOK one year.