2014-2015 Grants

First grade teacher Mrs. Jill Beers was awarded a $2,500 grant for a classroom set of 25 Hokki stools. The HOKKI is an ergonomic stool with a convex base that allows movement – rocking, twisting and turning – which increases students’ attention spans and concentration.

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First grade teacher Susan Nocera was awarded a $1,300 grant for books for a school-wide Open Circle Book Club project to support the social and emotional growth of all students at the Davis school. Each classroom teacher will be provided four books to read aloud to their classrooms at selected times throughout the year– –to help students make connections between literature and Open Circle concepts. The goal is to embrace and celebrate the underlying concepts as a school community.

printerSecond grade teacher Pat Flaherty-Dawson was awarded $700 for a printer and supplies to run a school newspaper project. The newspaper will be written and produced by second grade students. The second grade teachers view this as an opportunity to integrate the many forms of writing–informative, persuasive, narrative, and creative–that they are teaching their students and to provide students a broader audience for this writing.

Special Education teachers Elizabeth Larrabee and Christine Shaw were awarded a $3,400 grant for 14 Forte portable word processors to replace outdated AlphaSmarts. The Forte is an assistive technology tool to help students who have difficulty with the writing process. The Forte is loaded with programs and features designed by teachers and specialists specifically to assist and support student writing.

Lane School Technology Integration Specialist Matt Hall was awarded a $1200 grant for 20 Sphero robotic balls and educational packs. A Sphero connects wirelessly and can carry out orders more than 50 feet away from the iPad used to control it. Mr. Hall works with fifth grade students who learn to program the robots perform certain tasks by writing macros. Click here for a video of the Spheros in action.

standing desks

Fourth grade teacher Joshua Myler was awarded a $3,900 grant for a classroom set of standing desk conversion kits and stools. By midyear of the first year of implementation, the standing desks were shown to have made a significant impact for students who struggled to stay focused at the beginning of the year.


English teacher Kelsey Little was awarded a $245 grant to create a comfy
reading lounge in her 8th grade classroom as a way to encourage reluctant readers.

Physical Education teacher Libbey Beinert Hunnewell was awarded a $200 grant for Project Adventure books and games. In addition to using these resources in her own life skills classes, she plans to share these resources with all of JGMS’s teachers with the goal of incorporating Project Adventure activities and experiential learning aspects into every classroom at JGMS.

Bedford High School Robotics and Tech Ed. Teacher John O’Connor was awarded a $620 grant for an ION Air Pro Camera and equipment to mount the camera to the robots that the classes build. His students will be able to see what their robots “see” and use the video in reports of the robots’ performance in different challenges.


Athletics director Keith Mangan was awarded a $800 grant for ImPact Concussion Testing software. This software will help BHS manage student athlete injuries and train faculty and staff to recognize, respond to and prevent school-sports-related concussions.

BHS Science teacher Michael Griffin was awarded a $700 to create a collaborative learning space in the upper foyer area by the main entrance to the school. The project involves the design and construction of two tables and benches based on the periodic table and science-related artwork. By having students help create the two science-oriented tables and benches, they hope to foster areas that will allow students to work on projects in an informal setting.