The Bridgman Foundation for Educational Excellence has $5,000 to award in new grants during the 2020-2021 school year. Grants are awarded to teachers for the purpose of supporting curriculum enrichment and enhancing the learning experience.
Grants may submitted at any time and will be reviewed and responded in accordance with the current year's process schedule.
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The Foundation continues to enhance our children’s futures by providing them with a variety of learning opportunities.
One recent grant funded Elementary School Garden that teaches students about the soil and how to grow and prepare nutritious food. Appreciation of where our food comes from helps support our local agricultural economy. Learning about nutritious foods helps support a healthy life style.
Another grant funded the middle school STEM lab that has fully engaged students. They love learning about and using an array of technology tools. All students use the lab in a rotation similar to other selected partial year courses. Students choose a project, work in small groups to conduct research, problem solve, and present their finished products at the end of the 10-day class. In the future, the Bridgman Foundation for Educational Excellence will work with the school district to explore new and exciting options to expand STEM learning opportunities in all the district schools.
Digital Cameras/RMS (R. Marfia)
RMS has a No Cell Phone Policy that supports students’ concentration in learning and social interaction. The digital cameras provide students “legal” photographic equipment for various art projects. They learn how to take high quality photographs of their finished artwork, create digital art portfolios, and learn about a variety of art professions that use photography. The cameras will also be used in the production of the school’s yearbook.
Learn more at glowforge.com
STEM LAB Equipment/RMS (K. deBest)
A Glowforge design and laser engraving system and a new 3D printer, capable of printing multiple colors at a time, are new technology equipment used in a variety of businesses. The equipment provides students with learning opportunities well beyond those in a normal classroom to design, measure, edit, and produce multiple projects.
Artwork Display Rails/RMS (R. Marfia)
The display rails professionally and securely show artwork in approved areas around the school. They replace securing artwork to walls using painter’s tape that often wrinkled student work and did not hold artwork securely to the walls. Students love seeing their work displayed and enjoy discussing it with their peers. It helps them envision other work displayed in the public realm. Curating artwork also fulfills part of the visual art curriculum.
String Art for Advanced Geometry (A. Veldman)
This project enhances student understanding of geometry, first by using paper and colored pencils and then by applying that knowledge to create string art on wood planks. Students apply learned content in a creative way that is motivating, challenging, and memorable. Finally, it fulfills common core state standards for Advanced Geometry.
Kagan Activities/Book and Higher Level Thinking Cards/RMS (K. Wells)
The Kagan methodology book and cards for 8th grade science and social studies classes help to create a secure learning environment and increase student engagement and co-operation, as well as add more variety to current class activities. The Higher Level Thinking cards help students to think critically and creatively about content being studied.
Specialized Keyboard/RMS and BHS Band (C. Reppart)
The Harmony Director is a specialized keyboard to teach specifics about tuning, intonation and harmony through comparative learning. It helps teach intonation in a way that is impossible with a conventional keyboard and will take the band to the next performance level.
History Book Library/RMS Social Studies/ELA Integration (M. Foxworthy)
Fiction and nonfiction history books for 6th grade help deepen students’ knowledge of social studies concepts as well as increasing reading levels, thus supporting the school improvement reading goal for the 2019/2020 school year. Books are assigned reading and then discussed in book club format.
Handmade Sketchbooks/High School Art (R. Marfia)
Various art materials for grades 9 – 12 to create, maintain and use individual sketchbooks, including final binding and followed by creation of a digital version. Sketchbooks provide a place, where over time, students can practice, experiment with tools and techniques and see progress in their technical skills and processes.
Garden/Middle School (M. Payne)
Phase 2 of “spade in the ground project” to create a 20’ by 20’ garden at RMS and continue work towards its goal of making gardening and healthy eating a permanent part of Bridgman Public Schools. The school’s Garden Club will also create educational signage for all plantings.
Adjustable Desks/Elem. School Special Ed
Three standing adjustable desks to assist students with ADHD or other attention issues to focus by allowing them to stand during instructional time or when completing tasks, resulting in better learning and fewer discipline issues.
Qball Microphone/Elem.School (N. Foxworthy)
Thirteen Qball microphones for 13 teachers. The Qball (ball with interior microphone) is a progressive, action-oriented learning tool that engages and encourages participation of all students. This learning tool promotes personal interaction and strengthens inclusion. Students use the device to answer open-ended questions during a guided discussion. It helps teachers assess students’ knowledge of the common core and enhances social and emotional growth.
5th Grade Stand-Up Desks
A previous grant for 4 stand-up desks proved extremely beneficial in one 5th grade class. Funding for additional stand-up desks provided each of the three 5th grade classrooms with this flexible option to stand. Students who need help focusing or just need a chance to stand rather than sit, have shown marked improvement in behavior and learning.
Screenagers/Internet Safety Video (K. Haskens)
A documentary film to be shown at a Parent/Community forum provides information to parents and students on how to safely navigate the digital world and find balance in accessing and using technology.
Stem Library (J. Klunder)
A library of various STEM oriented materials that are reusable and can be integrated into all grade level reading classes in support of STEM principles and skills. The idea is to provide a natural progression to the Middle School STEM Lab.
Cultivating Creativity (Green)
Replacement display cases in the bus hallway for art in the elementary school encourages positive feedback among students and discussions about art and creativity. It also meets the Michigan State standard for art display of all grade levels throughout the year
Animation in Art (J. Bender)
Building on students’ STEM rotations, 6 th grade art class students will use iPads and software to create stop motion animation videos after storyboarding and preparation with analog props. It also will employ the team work and communications skills used in the STEM Lab.