The Bedford Education Foundation funded sixteen grants in our two 2017-2018 grant cycles, totaling over $25,000.
GRANTS FUNDED AT DAVIS SCHOOL
Davis School teacher Michael Dattoli and the entire second grade team have been awarded a $1,400 grant for Journey Around the World curriculum materials. Each second grade classroom will get new kits filled with various hands-on materials–international children figurines, world landmarks, animals from around the world, and continent puzzles–to help the students better understand different world cultures and regions.
Davis Kindergarten teachers Jaclyn Bentinck-Smith and Stacy Vallely were awarded a $2,900 grant for Screen Free Coding Equipment for all of the Kindergarten classrooms. This is a great way to introduce logic and coding without exposing children to more screen time. Every Kindergarten classroom will receive a Robot Mouse activity kit with an extra programmable mouse, plus a Let’s Go Code activity set. In addition, three KIBO robots will be shared amongst the Kindergarten classrooms.
GRANT FUNDED AT LANE SCHOOL
Lane School Speech and Language therapist Nadia Trant was awarded a $500 grant for an Expanding Expression Tool program (EET). EET is a multi-sensory approach for improving oral and written language, using a systematic, semantic, and hands-on methodology for organizing and describing. EET is a creative and innovative hands-on tool that will help students with their writing, close-reading and speaking skills.
GRANTS FUNDED AT JOHN GLENN MIDDLE SCHOOL
Lynda McGraw and Kimberly Comeiro were awarded a $3,000 grant for materials for the new Innovation and Design Lab at JGMS:
- Cubelets – robot construction kit
- Soldering station – chisel-tip soldering iron
- 3D scanner – uses an iPad to create 3D scans of rooms, objects, and people
- Snap Circuits – circuitry kit
- Lilypad Lab and accessories – sewable microcontroller designed for building soft interactive e-textiles
- 3D printer pen – replaces ink with plastic, which is heated at high temperatures but cools instantly, allowing for the creation of 3D objects
Seventh grade teacher Nicole D’Entremont was awarded a $450 grant for two standing desks for her English classroom. These desks will help students who benefit from a non-traditional seating arrangement to be more comfortable and focused in the classroom. With this grant, the BEF is happy to round out its history of successfully funding alternative seating options.
JGMS 8th grade English teachers Denise Breakall and Peter Jacob-Dolan were awarded a $1,200 grant to bring the Shakespeare Now! Theater Company to JGMS to perform Romeo and Juliet this coming Spring. We expect that this creative and innovative pilot program will resound with students and help many better understand and connect with Shakespeare.
The JGMS Guidance Department was awarded a $1,850 grant for Creating a Mindful Moment Room. The grant will provide resources and curriculum necessary for the complete transformation of Room B241, an alternative setting room in JGMS, often used for in-school suspensions, into a Mindful Moment Room, a safe place for middle schoolers to reconsider their choices while learning to decompress, reflect, and participate in sensory-based activities. This grant will help create an environment more conducive to early adolescent students’ engagement in deep, reflective thought, especially when confronted with social and emotional stress, in the hopes that coping skills improve and translate into a more positive school and classroom experience. We are proud to be a part of this ongoing initiative at JGMS.
GRANTS FUNDED AT BEDFORD HIGH SCHOOL
BHS English teacher Christine Magoon was awarded a $1,600 grant for materials to launch a Using Yoga and Mindfulness program for students in the STEP program, with the goal of offering yoga to the larger BHS population in future years. Ms. Magoon is a certified yoga and meditation instructor. Items funded include classroom sets of yoga mats, yoga blocks, yoga straps, and yoga blankets; mindfulness books; and a children’s yoga teaching certification program.
BHS librarian Jeanne Smyth and instructional coach Kristen Tracey were awarded a $1,750 grant for a 3D printer and a vinyl-cutting machine with accessories for the new Inquiry Lab in the BHS library. This new space will enrich the educational experience for students at BHS by inspiring students to question, think, create, and solve problems.
BHS Chorus & Theater teacher Katrina Faulstich was awarded a $1,400 grant for 4 eight-foot double ballet barres to launch a new Beginner Ballet class at BHS, open to students of all levels and experiences.
BHS Latin teacher Kim Alexander was awarded a $500 grant for a Latin children’s books library, or Bibliotheca Latina. Having students read familiar stories will help reinforce and expand upon their knowledge and understanding of the Latin language in a more modern context.
BHS Robotics teacher John O’Connor was awarded a $1,250 grant for materials that his students will use to use to design, build, and install a solar-powered system for charging the robotics and technology used in his Technical Education classes.
BHS theater director Katrina Faulstich was awarded a $720 grant for Costume and Prop Inventory software for the BHS theater department. The costumes and props used for BHS performances (and eventually JGMS performances) will be organized and catalogued so they are easier to find. Students will also be involved in this effort. The new software should allow the department to reuse more items, share resources with other schools, and spend more time working with students on the creative process.
Art Director Sean Hagan was awarded a $2,800 grant for five DSLR Cameras for a new BHS Digital Photography class, proposed for the 2018-2019 school year. These sophisticated cameras will offer students a much higher level of control, finesse, artistic choice, and creativity in their photography work than the various hand-held devices often used. Mr. Hagan envisions these cameras being used in a multitude of ways going forward, including the potential for high school students to give back to the Bedford community with their photography skills.
BHS English teachers Patti Messenger and Jillian Butler were awarded a $1,000 grant for a Visiting Writers’ Series. This program will allow for students to read selections from several authors and then have these authors come to BHS individually to discuss this work and process in a workshop format. This innovative program will help humanize the work and the writing process as well as allow students to think more critically about writing as a profession.
TEACHERS AS SCHOLARS
The BEF funded a $2,400 for four spaces for Bedford teachers to attend the very popular Teachers as Scholars program. Teachers as Scholars offers content-based professional development seminars led by university faculty for K-12 educators. TAS allows teachers to study a chosen topic in depth, enabling them to bring creative and innovative ideas relating to this discipline back into their classrooms.