Sandi Taylor: Volunteer Teaching in India (2015)
Amount funded: $2,953.67
March 2014
Grant Recipient - Sandi Taylor // Transformative summer travel experience volunteer teaching English in India.

Poetry Out Loud
Amount funded: $200.00
February 2014
Grant Recipient - Deb Covell // Event registration for qualifying student to represent the District.

Digital Textbook Creation
Amount funded: $2,890.00
February 2014
Grant Recipients - Mitch Major, Sharon O'Connell, Jim Ryan, Julie Spinelli & Lori Usifer // The Middle School social studies department worked with the library media specialist to create a digital social studies textbook. In this digital age, it seems natural that students and teachers would want digital textbooks to enable them not only to read pages of descriptive text but to access multimedia, to receive announcements from teachers and learning partners and to create interactive learning experiences. This allows students to have access to textbooks on a tablet either at home or at school.

Engineering is Elementary
Amount funded: $2,276.00
February 2014
Grant Recipients - Erin Brown and Brian Cohen // A 2011 study found that students are deciding as early as second- and third grade whether they like, and think they are good at, math and science. Other studies suggest engineering activities help build classroom equity. The engineering design process removes the stigma from failure; instead, failure is an important part of the problem-solving process and a positive way to learn. Equally important, in engineering there’s no single “right” answer; one problem can have many solutions. In addition to building these 21st century skills, engineering activities call for students to apply what they know about math and science. And, because engineering activities are based on real-world problems, they help children see how math and science are relevant to their lives. This grant will bring more engineering units into State Street Intermediate School, giving our students the opportunity to develop and nurture both skills as well as a love for math, science, technology, and engineering.

Newton’s Hovercraft
Amount funded: $536.00
February 2014
Grant Recipient - Richard Allen // Students discover the joy of Newton’s laws with this 40" wide hovercraft. Newton’s first law of motion says that an object at rest tends to stay at rest and an object in motion stays in motion. However, on Earth there are other forces all the time, friction being the most ever-present. Because of these forces, it’s difficult to show kids just what Newton meant. With the assistance of the Hovercraft, students will feel for themselves.

21st Century Digital Data Collection
Amount funded: $9,009.00
February 2014
Grant Recipients - Dan Kurzen and Matthew Slauson // In today’s STEM-driven society preparing our students to use 21st century sensors and interfaces for precise, real-time data collection is imperative. Doing so will allow students to collect data, often at sample rates of thousands per second, and watch the data be graphed in real-time on a computer that is designed to work hand-in-hand with the sensors and interfaces. Such accuracy allows students to obtain more precise experimental results and do so quicker, which gives them more time to focus on data analysis and drawing conclusions. This grant will provide our high school physics and technology classrooms with Vernier sensors, interfaces, and software.

3D Printer
Amount funded: $27,976.00
February 2014
Grant Recipients - Matthew Slauson, Scott Stagnitta & Rob Tuttle // Wikipedia describes 3D printing as a “process of making a three-dimensional solid object of virtually any shape from a digital model. 3D printing is achieved using an additive process, where successive layers of material are laid down in different shapes.” This process is used in many fields, from manufacturing to architecture. Providing our students with early exposure to this technology will give them an understanding of real-world applications and give them a significant advantage with college readiness. This grant will fund the purchase of a Stratasys uPrint SE printer.

Robotics on the Move
Amount funded: $19,075.00
September 2013
Grant Recipients - Seth Benjamin and Scott Stagnitta // For the last 6 years, Skaneateles middle school students have experienced and benefited from a unique learning unit involving robotics and computer programming. The program, originally funded by a grant from the Allyn Foundation and then two additional grants from SEF, has been wildly successful and popular with students. Interestingly, the original Lego NXT Kits purchased 6 years ago have actually become less challenging for 8th graders over the years. In fact, the authors of this grant recommend that the Lego NXT Kits be shifted to the 5th grade, introducing students to robotics and computer programming at an even earlier age. Chromebooks were purchased to provide classroom portability and support the NXT software. Subsequently, this grant also provided funding for new Lego EV3 Robotics kits to be used in the 8th grade. This grant will fund curriculum development hours for both programs.

Engineering is Elementary
Amount funded: $4,609.00
September 2013
Grant Recipients - Mary Arnott and Brian Cohen // Educators are realizing that for students to develop a real passion for STEM-related studies and careers, their interest must be sparked at a very early age. Recently, Waterman School created a STEM laboratory to provide an opportunity for students to explore and learn STEM-related concepts. This grant funded additional resources to expand the laboratory, specifically adding Engineering is Elementary units, created by the Museum of Science in Boston.

Literacy For All
Amount funded: $1,000.00
September 2013
Grant Recipients - Diane Stellmack and Sue Vanderpool // Everyone understands the importance of obtaining literacy skills in primary school and the use of early intervention programs if students need help. Staying current with new and effective strategies and techniques is important to all teachers who are responsible for this critical developmental skill. This grant provided partial funding for four Waterman reading teachers to attend the 24th Annual Literacy for All Conference. Participants attended workshops covering a wide variety of topics including Common Core Standards, Kindergarten Literacy, Technology and Literacy, Literacy Coaching, Guided Reading, Comprehension and others.

Haiku Seed Project
Amount funded: $5,140.00
September 2013
Grant Recipients - Mitch Major and Lori Usifer // A new and powerful paradigm shift is being tested with great success around the country. It involves “flipping” the classroom to provide the “lecture” at home and the “homework” in the classroom. By allowing teachers to focus on the hands-on learning and practice, they can provide superior individualized instruction. Along with this new approach comes an increased use of technology and social media style tools to communicate between teacher and student. This grant will purchase 500 subscriptions ($5000) to Haiku, the powerful online learning environment. An additional up to 200 subscriptions ($2000) may be tested in Phase 2. If the seed project is successful, the school district will budget for the annual student subscriptions after the initial one year seed period.

Mariachi Music for Fiesta
Amount funded: $600.00
September 2013
Grant Recipient - Heather Buff // Every year, the fifth grade has a social studies unit of study covering Latin America and Mexico, which culminates in a “Fiesta Day Celebration”. During “Fiesta” students are exposed to the culture and traditions of Mexico. This grant will fund the Marcos Santiago and Los Arpegios; a Mariachi Trio from Rochester, New York to participate in the fiesta celebration by providing music during the fiesta luncheon, classroom workshops and a formal concert at the end of the day. This opportunity will enrich the experience of our students by bringing them in direct contact with the work of traditional Latin American musicians and instruments.