The grant program is designed for and available to teachers and administrators in the Somers elementary, middle and high schools. Each grant application is coordinated by the school administration and is forwarded to the Foundation. A Grant Review Committee thoroughly examines each application and makes recommendations to the Board of Directors for a final decision.
For additional information about Grants,
please visit our History Page and also our About Us Page
· Traditions of Chinese Acrobats (MBA)
This grant will enrich the students’ lives, exposing them to arts in another culture by
presenting a solo acrobatic performance. The performer will point out connections to Chinese art and culture and explains some rituals of the Chinese New Year and teach the audience some basic Chinese phrases.
· Rockin’ Readers (SES)
This grant will establish a new section in the SES library where books that connect to music and performing arts are featured. All students at Somers Elementary attend both music and media every week. These books will facilitate cross curricular connections, foster a love of reading, enhance student understanding of our music curriculum, and enable students to continue learning outside the classroom and at home with friends and family. The grant provides for shelving to house the books and many new books to populate the shelf.
· Gallery Wall Project (MBA)
One way to motivate students is to let them see their own work and that of their peers on public display. This project will provide the frames to attractively display every student’s artwork throughout the halls of MBA. This will enhance the personalization of the learning environment, beautify the hallways, and allow students to share their talents with peers and staff.
· Enhancing WIN services (SHS)
The WIN program steps in to help students with learning gaps and skill deficits. The grant will provide a white board table, on which students can try out ideas, make easy corrections, and experiment freely. New furniture will encourage participation and collaboration and allow for individual attention when needed.
· Enhancing the Reading Environment (SES)
This is an additional way to encourage students to read and reflect by providing temporary outdoor seating in the enclosed courtyard at Somers Elementary. It will provide more space for students to read on their own in a quiet setting.
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· Smart Pass for Somers High School (SHS)
This software uses student chrome books to issue, approve, and track student pass usage. This will first provide data on the extent of any problem of over-using passes and significant loss of learning time. It will also provide data on who is using passes, how often, and with whom, so that steps can be taken to intervene where appropriate. This is all done with very little teacher time wasted on enforcement or checking up on students. Instead of rules that hamper all students, those who simply need a pass and those with an unhealthy or illicit motivation, this system would allow for a precise response affecting only those who are operating outside the rules.
· Exploring the World beyond the Classroom (SES)
This grant will establish a fund for visual field trips, aligned to curriculum content, that connect students to real world experts. For example, as students are learning about weather, they can explore how the sun affects our Earth’s weather with an interactive experiment comparing hot and cold air with experts at a science center in Colorado. We are already equipped with the technology to make connections with National Parks, museums, laboratories and many other sites. This grant will fund those connections, bringing students virtually to the site where they can interact with experts at the site. The STEM leader will work with classroom teachers to connect students to those real-world experts.
· Multimedia Communications Class Studio Upgrade (SHS)
Multimedia class at Somers has been using old equipment that severely limits what they can produce. This equipment upgrade will give the production a more modern feel and better prepare the students for real world broadcasting. The equipment would also allow the class to record in a single take with less editing, which in turn would provide more time for interviews and highlight stories that would bring together the SHS community.
NOTE: These Educational Grants amounted to $22,545. Additional Professional Grants totaling $3,471 were awarded this semester bringing the Total Semester Grants to $26,016.
This grant will fund the inclusion of a maker space in the Mabelle B. Avery media center. Maker spaces encourage students to brainstorm, design, and create virtually anything they can think up. These spaces provide students access to tools, machines, and materials which they may not have an opportunity to experience otherwise. They promote curiosity, innovation, experimentation, and entrepreneurship, and have the potential to awaken new interests and influence career paths. The addition of a maker space to the MBA media center will allow students to learn skills, like sewing, knitting, and designing, and to use machines, like 3D printers, sewing machines, and laser engravers, in a safe and supportive environment.
Students in the club will choose the books to read from among those nominated for the Nutmeg Book Award. They will then all read the same book, supplied by the Book Club’s advisor Ms. Lipman, and discuss it after. The Nutmeg award nominees are chosen by Children’s Library Specialists and School Media Specialists from among the new publications in young adult literature. The grant ‘s goal is to encourage students to read the best in young adult literature and discuss it with it their peers, helping to foster a reading culture in the Middle School.
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One important student assignment in Architectural Design classes is to design a custom home. Once students have completed their design, they will be able to use the Virtual Reality headsets purchased by this grant to walk around in and explore their custom designed home, finding how it feels and looks. The immediacy of this feedback can motivate students to expand their learning. •
NOTE: These three Educational Grants amounted to $13,578. $3,786 was also granted for Professional Development, bringing the total expended this semester to $17,364.