Hi, I'm Sam.

Computer Scientist-turned-Teacher from California

Now

I am a teacher of computer science and programming, as well as an independent K-12 curriculum developer, teaching and developing project-based learning curriculums for secondary K-12 schools and online learning platforms since 2017. I have a Career Technical Education teaching credential from CA, USA. I'm also an ESL english teacher, a web & mobile app developer, and a yoga & meditation instructor.

I've recently launched Termeric, which is an online buy-and-sell marketplace for K-12 school subject teacher curriculums.

Before discovering my passion at the crossroads of computers and teaching, I spent seven years during and after my Ph.D. studies at UCLA as a programming languages researcher, focusing on the application of artificial intelligence in programming and software development.

My Story

I grew up in Iran and moved to southern CA, US with my family after high school. I moved up to northern CA to finish my undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley at 2005, then worked in Silicon Valley industry as a software engineer for a couple of years. In 2007 I moved back down to southern CA to finish my Ph.D. in Computer Science at UCLA, which came in 2013.

2007 I loved all the 6 years of graduate school at UCLA Computer Science dept., as much as I had hated undergraduate years at Berkeley!

My computer science work was on the application of AI tools for computer programming and programming languages. I continued this work as an academic researcher for another few years.

2014 A Demo of My Work: Sketchpad14 - Bridge under Wind

In 2015 I got an urge to switch my career and life path to focus more on yoga and yoga philosophy, after becoming a follower of the teachings of the great yogi Yogananda. This event eventually moved me back up to northern CA where I was to live for threes years in an intentional community of other followers of this teaching in the foothills of Sierra Nevada. There I received my yoga and meditation teacher training, while I delved deeper into the teachings and practiced bringing them to my daily life.

2015 I moved to an intentional community with other followers of Paramhansa Yogananda

2015 Sam the yoga teacher

2015 Sam the meditation teacher

As it happened, while there I made a return to my software life, when I was asked to create a meditation app. This eventually lit a spark in me to teach my craft to others. I applied my knowledge of programming and experience in software development to create a Udemy online course. Later in 2017 I found an opportunity to teach programming and computer science part-time in the secondary school in the community where I lived.

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2016 My courses on Udemy. The first course I created on Udemy was Introduction to Programming and App Development

In 2018 I was ready to go full-time as computer teacher. At the same time I felt it was time to leave the simple life of the intentional community and make it back to the "real-world." Being inspired by a friend who was looking into teaching English abroad, I looked into computer teaching jobs outside of US and landed on an opportunity to work as a curriculum developer in a K-12 technology education company in Thailand. After working there for about a year, I took a full-time computer/ESL teaching position in a school in north-east of Thailand, as part of their international program, where I would stay for two years. This was the funnest job I've ever done.

2020 Teaching in Thailand amid Covid19!

2020 One of my students in Thailand drew a typical scene in my classes!

While there I met a girl, married, and had a baby son! In 2021 we made it back to CA to live back in the USA. Here I am working on a CTE teacher credential program, which should help me learn a few more things about the teaching trade and obtain a computer teacher job. Aside from classroom teaching, independently creating curriculum for K-12 education of computer science has become my speciality.

2021 Back in US with a family!

In 2021 I launched a new kind of buy-and-sell teacher curriculum marketplace website called Termeric, with a focus on structure, completeness, and quality. For now I'm creating and placing my own teacher curriculums there for sale and hope that other teachers can soon discover it too!

To get in touch, please see my web page. Thanks!