Middle School Book Room ($7,923.88) (Sara Stofik, Middle School Reading Specialist) - The grant consists of the establishment of a school-wide book room to better meet the diverse, independent reading levels of all students in grades 6-8. It will contain 2,628 fiction and nonfiction books ranging in a variety of reading levels. Language Arts teachers will be able to use the book room to supplement their classroom libraries during specific units of study. Additionally, Science and Social Studies teachers will be able to use the book room to supplement and diversify reading materials within their classrooms. As a result, students will have access to more books, which bolsters independent reading and opens the doors to new experiences, time periods and ideas through books. MTFEE awarded a grant last fall to the Elementary School to establish a book room in that building, which has been successful with its staff and students.
STEAM Pro Library Mini Lab ($3,697) (Jo-Ann Trifiro, Fourth Grade Teacher; Beth Topinka, Fifth Grade Teacher; Michelle Falanga, Gifted and Talented (K-8)) - Mrs. Trifiro recently received a $500 STEAM classroom grant from FirstEnergy, with which she purchased littleBits ® deluxe kits for her students to get a hands-on experience learning electronics. MTFEE's grant award will expand the possibilities of that grant and reach more students within the Elementary School. The grant consists of a littleBits ® Pro Library, which is an expanding collections lab of color-coded, modular electronics that snap together magnetically. This "library" will allow elementary school students the ability to design and build their own electronic inventions using the engineering design process. This will enhance the district's STEAM initiative and further prepare its students to actively engage in shaping the technology of the future. littleBits ® Pro Library provides an extensive way to learn and prototype with electronics. The electronic modules range from the very simple—such as power sensors—to complex, wireless programmable components that promote hands-on learning and exploring. Students will also have the opportunity to utilize the district's rapid prototyping tools, such as 3D printers and laser cutters, to create realistic prototypes.
Collaboration, Creativity and Learning with LEGO ® s ($1,970.52) (Marian Peck, First Grade Teacher; Shannon Bell, Art Teacher (K-5)) - The grant consists of a 42'x50" interactive LEGO ® wall with over 6,000 LEGO ® bricks to aid in instruction, creativity and STEAM lessons. The wall will serve as a STEAM lab for teachers and students to use, as well as an indoor recess option and lab for Gifted and Talented. Students can use these bricks in areas including math, STEAM and visual arts to plan, investigate, design, create and revise—all essential skills for problem-solving and creativity.