Did you know that many children are “musical learners?” Research has shown that children are more likely to pick up complex ideas and improve reading fluency when learning is set to music. Four teachers at Heather Elementary put… Read More
Ms. Core wanted her 7th and 8th grade P.E. students to learn about and monitor their actual activity movement time during class. Thanks to a SCEF Educator Innovation Fund grant, she was able to purchase pedometers for her… Read More
Mrs. Norgaard’s 3rd graders were determined to find ways to increase their physical activity during the school day. After her students wrote a persuasive essay to the principal suggesting improvements that could be made at school, Mrs. Norgaard,… Read More
It’s one thing to learn about Colonial times and the American Revolution by reading history books; it’s another to actually see history in action. Ms. Scannell and Ms. Frick, 5th grade language arts and U.S. history teachers at Tierra Linda, developed an innovative project-based learning (PBL) unit about Colonial America in Williamsburg, Virginia. Williamsburg is an outdoor history museum and town preserved in the time of 18th century America. Tourists can meet the townspeople, tradespeople, shopkeepers, political figures, women and the enslaved who explain their lives and perspectives. Last fall, supported by funding from the SCEF Educator Innovation Fund, Ms. Scannell and Ms. Frick traveled to Williamsburg to film this living history for their classes. When they returned they posted the videos on Google Classroom, a class share site, over the course of a month.
The SCEF Educator Innovation Fund enables teachers to bring to life projects of all sizes. But even the projects funded with small grants can have a big impact on students. When Ms. Flanagan’s White Oaks kindergarten class became obsessed with reading I Spy books she seized the opportunity to turn interest into a project based learning challenge: to create a classroom I Spy book written, designed and published by the students.
Ms. Higginbotham, a first grade teacher at Arundel, used funding from the SCEF Educator Innovation Grant to take her outer space unit to the next level: to the moon to be exact. Thanks to SCEF, Ms. Higginbotham was able to invest in a webcam and a subscription to Nepris, a company that virtually connects classrooms with math and science professionals for interactive discussions. She then transformed her classroom into a makerspace and tasked her students with creating a moon colony. Students worked in small groups to build different parts of the colony, including: living space, a recreation area, space for plants and food, a laboratory, and vehicles.
This year SCEF funds helped place full-time counselors in all six elementary and middle schools. In addition, a $20,000 grant from the SCEF Educator Innovation Fund enabled counselors to roll out a new program called Second Step to all students in the district. The Second Step program is a universal, classroom-based curriculum that focuses on four key areas needed to have healthy social and emotional growth, which include: skills for listening, developing empathy, emotion management and effective problem solving. The goal of the Second Step program is to instill these critical life skills in students now, with yearly reinforcement as they progress to each new grade level.
What parent hasn’t tired of reminding their child to wash their hands? Ms. Peck’s sixth grade science students at Central Middle School are probably doing a better job washing since they completed two innovative experiments on personal hygiene…. Read More
The highlight of Kelsey Murray’s second grade year at Brittan Acres was working on a SCEF-funded Lego engineering project spearheaded by her teacher, Mrs. Corea. Kelsey wrote, “My favorite second grade memory is doing Legos. My friend Sheri… Read More