BASIS Independent Fremont students know a thing or two about exploring at the edge of science. Over the years, BIF students have dredged the Bay in search of new life and written more lines of code in Tynker than any other school. They have even explored the universe in augmented reality by visiting Google computer scientists.

BASIS Independent students learning about gravity outside.

Last month, Mr. Miller, Math and Science Subject Expert Teacher, provided BIF students with another cutting edge opportunity, this time to learn about the James Webb Space Telescope from NASA scientists themselves. Visiting presenter Dr. Thomas Beatty spoke with BIF students via Zoom about the mission. Students learned about the operations center, team member duties, and what it takes to turn dim light and abstract math into the amazing images of the James Webb Space Telescope. After sharing the first-ever James Webb telescope image with students, Dr. Beatty fielded student questions ranging in topic from how to become an astronomer to handling disasters in high-risk missions.

BASIS Independent Students hear from Dr. Thomas Beatty about the James Webb Space Telescope.

“The James Webb Telescope is the culmination of 25 years of trial and error in exploration. Hopefully, the result will be finding signs of new life,” says Mr. Miller. “At a minimum, I hope the James Webb inspires a generation of new scientists.” 


The James Webb Space Telescope mission is only possible when fearless scientific inquiry meets passionate wonder. During Mr. Miller's five years at BASIS Independent Fremont, he has focused on encouraging both of these important aspects of learning. “Mr. Miller is helpful in class and always makes me feel comfortable with asking questions when I don’t know something,” says grade 2 student Maximus, speaking of a healthy willingness to make mistakes. In wonder, grade 4 student Mira says, “I remember in 2nd grade Mr. Miller showed us how we could actually see static electricity on a balloon. I went home and had to show my parents.” 

As scientists, young and old, eagerly await the first images from the James Webb Telescope, those of us on the ground in Fremont eagerly anticipate the magic of math and science that Mr. Miller brings to BIF students every day.


Mr. Miller leading the next generation of BIF athletes 

BASIS Independent Fremont is a grades TK-12 private school based in Fremont, California, providing students an internationally benchmarked liberal arts and sciences curriculum. Considering joining the BASIS Independent Fremont community? Join our interest list by clicking here to receive admissions updates for Fall 2022.