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2009-10 Grants

2009-10 Innovation Grant Winners:

Latino Leadership Team

Working with counselors from Omni Youth services, a full day leadership team building event will be held to develop a Latino Leadership Committee. The training will include low and high ropes courses. Topics featured include working with others, reaching out to the community, finding commonalities among one another, and what it takes to be a good leader. The group will then work together to provide translation services at evening programs and events for parents. (VHHS-Tiffany Heinlein, Jodi Cusick-Acosta, Rebeca Garcia) Awarded: $1000

Social Thinking Curriculum

Addressing the needs of students with social-cognitive deficits, this program would be introduced at both schools. The Speech-Language pathologist for the district will work with the Special Services social workers at the buildings to run groups that will teach this curriculum to the students.  The grant money would be used to purchase materials (books, posters, DVDs) for both schools. Staff has already attended a seminar on this curriculum.  (LHS/VHHS-Andrea Townsend) Awarded: $1000

Culture, Identity, and Knowledge: Ernesto Mejia student Lunch &Learn and Latino Parent/Student evening Program

This program would cover issues of identity and culture and how they impact our lives. The student portion of this program would be open to all students. The primary audience would be ELL students, students of immigrant parents, and/or students who are immigrants themselves. The keynote speaker, Ernesto Mejia, would deliver a keynote address. Group discussion and activities would follow.  An evening program for students and their families, delivered in Spanish, would discuss issues such as family and the importance of education. (VHHS-Wendy Meister-Louria, Tiffany Heinlein) Awarded: $1000

Orchestra Collaborative Composition Project

Orchestra students will work with a professional composer in multiple sessions during a classroom module on musical composition. The composer will write a piece for the orchestra, involving students in the step-by-step writing processes he uses. He will also listen to, evaluate, and offer guidance for group compositions created by the students. Groups will do creative video recordings of their compositions for CatTube and perform them live at a public concert. (LHS-Jason Heath) Awarded: $1000

Good Eats: The Chemistry of Food

Food chemistry is the study of chemical processes and interactions of all biological and non-biological components of foods. Students will be able to explore, learn and understand the chemistry behind preparing food through various lab activities and demonstrations. By adding food chemistry to topics already covered, the course content will be enhanced and students will be given additional examples of how chemistry is connected to so many aspects of life. The grant money will be used to purchase equipment and food items necessary to provide the instruction. (LHS-Sherri Rukes) Awarded: $1000

Introduction to Material Science Unit

One of the fastest growing college majors, Material Science, encompasses metals, ceramics, polymers and composites. The project will allow the students to examine, test and understand the various types of materials and learn how chemistry relates to other subjects and jobs.  Some of the topics will be additions to the existing curriculum. A separate two week unit will be developed to study some of the materials that have important uses in society but do not fit easily into the current curriculum. The grant money will be used to purchase equipment and materials to provide the instruction. (LHS-Sherri Rukes) Awarded: $1000

Elluminate in the Classroon: Using Synchronous and Asynchronous Virtual Meeting Space as Supplementary Education

Using the software product Elluminate, students can log on as an entire class to a virtual classroom from their home computer in order to receive supplemental education, from review sessions led by the teacher to presentations given by the students themselves. Sessions are conducted in real time online, and then recorded so that students who might miss the session can recall the session at their leisure. Funding would provide licensing for one year in one classroom. This can be considered a pilot program for this type of teaching. (LHS-Meredith Tarczynski, David Widzisz) Awarded: $1000

Safe Navigation: G.P.S. Units (Go Places Safely)

The Driver Education Staff would like to utilize portable GPS units to enhance instruction. Students will be taught how to use the technology safely and how to utilize features that can help in case of emergencies. The units will also enhance classroom projects related to trip planning and map reading skills. The grant money will be used to purchase 3 Garmin Nuvi 1250 units. (LHS-Bryan Wilcox) Awarded: $750