The Education Foundation is very happy to announce that four MSAD #22 projects were awarded mini grants, totaling $939, this fall. The funded projects are highlighted below.
Masking Making Art and Art History Project for Smith, Wagner, and McGraw Schools
This project expands an already existing program using mask making, cultural, and art activity kits at multiple grade levels to educate students in multiculturalism, teach them about art throughout history, and engage them in hands-on, creative work by making their own masks.
Art teacher Mary Ann Hennesey Ashe, who applied for the grant, said “I teach art lessons through Art History and learning about various world cultures...These products will be used in many ways at many grade levels. I… have been using the Math Art Projects in my Art Club, and have plans to incorporate several of those projects into classes as well.”
Individualized Learning “Café” for Smith School
Smith School 4th grade teacher Jessie Gower is using mini grant funds to pay for three annual subscriptions to “The Daily Café,” an online learning resource that supplements teaching programs in literacy and math. Teachers involved in the project have already had some professional development work using this material and have visited other districts that are integrating individualized approaches, which align with the goals of Mass Customized Learning, an innovative system being considered in our District.
Kids Love Rain: All-Weather Gear for Weatherbee School
A mini grant for Weatherbee School obtained by 5th grade teacher Susan O’Brien helped purchase children-sized, 100 % guaranteed, L.L. Bean rain pants for students to use for outdoor learning, even if the weather doesn’t cooperate. School ownership of the rain gear will help to avoid cancellations or postponements of valuable field trips due to weather (an all too common mishap).
American Sign Language Mentors for Hampden Academy
Thanks to a grant, American Sign Language (ASL) students at the high school will learn sign language with the help of non-hearing mentors. ASL teacher Donna Casavant, who applied for the grant, said that working with people from the non-hearing community adds invaluable perspective, engagement, and real-life learning for ASL students.
“It is so exciting that the Foundation provided funds for mentors for the American Sign Language program,” she noted. “It is a unique language, and like any other language, exposure to native communicators is extremely helpful for new language learners.”