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2019-2020 Grant Awards

2019-2020 Princeton Education Foundation Grants

Elementary School

Powerful Poetry for the African American Read-In: PHS, JP: Dr. Joy Barnes-Johnson, Dawn Henderso

Students will have the opportunity to interact with poets by listening and engaging with poets during the Read In on Saturday as well as at their schools on the Monday after the Read In. 2020 marks the 30th anniversary of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) national initiative to make literacy a significant part of Black History Month. This community-wide event is an invitation to begin African American Cultural Heritage Month in our community. This program hope to cultivate an awareness and love of texts that celebrate African American themes, authors and stories for all levels of literacy, ages and cultural experience.

Coding with Codesnap: CP, JP, LB, RS: Linda Morris, Lora Hobart, Jordan Ullman, Jessica Saide

Teach coding with SAS software through Codesnaps/Curriculum Pathways, a block-coding format and Sphero SPRK+ robots, to elementary students district-wide. This program will further the introduction of coding into the elementary curriculum in an age-appropriate but impactful way.

Flexible Seating: CP: Marian Figueroa-Toro

Brick Based Coding: CP: Yaimee Herrera

Offer life long learners engaging, hands-on experiences where they explore core STEM concepts and link them to real-life phenomenon. Through the use of Lego’s WeDo 2.0, students will deepen their understanding of science and engineering concepts through a brick based coding system where iPads are integrated into their designs. The results will be students who are more knowledgeable in coding, the engineering design process, standards-based science concepts (Energy in 4th Grade), as well as critical 21st Century skills for success and enhanced problem solving and collaboration.

Buddy Benches: CP: Elizabeth Stefee-Marmo

Our goal is to promote kindness, inclusion, friendship, and a sense of connectedness within our school community by purchasing Buddy Benches for the playgrounds at Community Park Elementary School. A Buddy Bench can be a small, safe haven for students who are feeling emotional, lonely, or those who may not have the skill-set or the confidence to ask a friend to play or join in on an activity. The Buddy Benches will give their classmates a clear visual signal that they are seeking a positive social connection.

Coding Basics to Increase Sight Word Recognition: JP: Christine Moreyra

Use EVO Ozobots to increase basic coding skills, sight word recognition, and to deepen reading comprehension of students in the first grade classroom. When learning new sight words, students will select a code for the robots perform based on the sight word they are learning. With a new way to engage and reinforce the memorization of sight words, an increase in word retention, reading skills and attentiveness is expected.

Expanding Digital Library in Special Education Program: LB: Kristen Greenberg

Offer struggling readers a digital device, Amazon Kindles specifically, allows them to look like their peers while they are practicing at an appropriate level. Being able to offer a digital reading device is also appealing to students who are already struggling and reluctant to pick up a traditional book. Building a substantial digital library offers students enough choice at a variety of levels to build their reading skills.

Wilson Reading System: LB: Christine Morabito

Wilson Reading System provides systematic instruction for students struggling to read and spell. The LB teachers have significant experience in multisensory instruction and these materials would enhance what is in place and allow for better transitions to the next grade level. Will allow the special education teachers to provide a more enriching multisensory experience.

Social Emotional Learning Boost: RS: Ben Samara

This grant will support learning throughout the school by promoting a safe, happy and healthy school environment. It will also support the school-counseling curriculum specifically, and social-emotional learning throughout the school, by providing the counselor, teachers and aides with resources and material to assist students with friendships, conflict and social-emotional development.

Apple TV for Autism Classroom: RS: Kelly Bunero

With the use of an Apple TV device, students may learn how to share and explain information that they are working on and give “presentations” to their peers (social skills, speech goals, academic and IEP driven goals). Another major goal for the Apple TV is staff training. This year Riverside Special Education are trying to implement a self- regulation monitoring program across our autism program and in certain general education classes. This TV would be used to have staff mirror work from their apple devices for quick shares, presentations, examining student behaviors in classrooms, as well as many other excellent training tools available.

Access to Indigenous Texts: RS: Liz Lien

The goal of this project is to provide more #ownvoices Native American resources into the hands of students and teachers in order to provide authentic windows into the current lives and the histories of this diverse group of peoples than our curricula and supporting resources currently provide. This will further the goal of combatting stereotypes of indigenous peoples to which children are exposed (from sports team mascots to relegations of these cultures to a place in the past).

Instrumental Collaboration: RS: Kristen Schenck

The goal of the elementary instrument collaboration is to foster musical independence as well as inclusive collaboration. By having students on their own melodic instruments, they develop ownership over their musical ideas and the creative process. Students will be able to improvise, create, and collaborate with greater ease.

John Witherspoon Middle School

Cardboard Boat Regatta: JW: Janet Gaudino, Matthew Halfacre, Paul Merritt

The JW Cardboard Boat Regatta has become one of the most beloved and celebrated events at John Witherspoon Middle School. This activity is designed to demonstrate the practical application of science and technology and help meet the engineering expectations of Next Generation Science Standards. This year’s race will require the development of a 4‐passenger craft that can sail across the pool through three different race events. Students will continue our partnership with Civics, focusing their design and theme around a US Port City.

Prusa 3D Printers: JW: Randolph Casey

The Prusa 3D printers would allow students in this classroom to 3D print their designs created in Sketchup, a 3d design software. 3D design is taught in the STEM Robotics class at all grade levels, 6th, 7th, and 8th grade. Students often work on designing houses, bridges, and a variety of other designs. The Prusa has a larger print bed, quieter build, and great quality. The addition of these updated 3D printers will provide more opportunity than the current printers for these students to 3D print their designs and practically apply their coursework.

Electronic CO2 Dragster Raceway System: JW: Matthew Halfacre

Purchase of an Electronic CO2 Dragster Raceway System. This Raceway System will be used during the conclusion of the 7th grade Design and Engineering CO2 dragster unit., and allows for a controlled and systematic launching of the student’s created projects. The system will be set up in one of the hallways at JW during the race periods, allowing for the cars to travel the 75 feet that they need to complete a race. On race day the students will be paired off and raced head to head. The ability to have a simulated real-world race allows for a more engaging and impactful conclusion to the project.

Flexible Seating: JW: Jennifer Simon

Modify existing furniture, and acquire new furniture that will help provide flexibility in lessons and class activities, as well as allow for student choice in their workspaces within the special education science classroom. In addition, provide space to accommodate large club activities and wheelchair use.

LGBTQIA+ and Intersectionality Educational Resources and Materials: Thomas Foley, Jennifer Simon, Adam Rothschild,
Vanessa Bernal

Intersectionality emphasizes that people belonging to multiple minority groups are more susceptible to discrimination. The most effective way to decrease discrimination and assure equity and inclusion is to educate others. This project seeks to educate students and staff about systems of oppression and about the challenges that those who hold minority identities face, including racial and ethnic minorities, LGBTQIA+, and those with disabilities. This grant will broaden the spectrum of resources and educational materials available to students and staff on these issues, and will allow the JW counseling department to further educate the JW community.

The Wheels in the Art Room: JW: Claudia Luongo

Purchase of a pottery wheel for Visual Arts classroom that will increase the abilities and interest in ceramics and provide for the development of more hands-on technical skills.

Princeton High School

Powerful Poetry for the African American Read-In: PHS, JP: Dr. Joy Barnes-Johnson, Dawn Henderson

Students will have the opportunity to interact with poets by listening and engaging with poets during the Read In on Saturday as well as at their schools on the Monday after the Read In. 2020 marks the 30th anniversary of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) national initiative to make literacy a significant part of Black History Month. This community-wide event is an invitation to begin African American Cultural Heritage Month in our community. This program hope to cultivate an awareness and love of texts that celebrate African American themes, authors and stories for all levels of literacy, ages and cultural experience.

True Crime Novel Critique: PHS: Alexis Custer

Purchase of various non-fiction texts that will be used in the classroom to help reinforce skills and themes taught in the course.  A culminating project will be assigned at the completion of the selected texts. Additional lab materials for the course will also be purchased with the provided funding. 

Homeroom Re-Boot: Steffanie Shoop, Angela Siso Stentz, Jessica Baxter, Angel Fuentes-Pesquera,Alexis Custer,Janine Giammanco, Kristina Donovan,Stacey Palant, Mridula Baja, Nipurna Shah, Julianna Krawiecki, Jen Bigioni, Kristina Hayda, Carly Misiewicz, Valerie Rodriguez,Cynthia Bregenzer, Douglas Levendowski, Kyle Pugliese

The goals of this project include creating a positive school climate through intentionally building school community. Lessons have been created that scaffold the goals of creating a Community Homeroom Time. Every lesson has a pedagogical justification rooted in accredited research that supports the idea that establishing connections is paramount to student wellness and success. By creating a homeroom program that not only builds communities, but is also a starting point to help address student wellness by incorporating restorative practices, is the primary goal. Activities that work towards this goal will include community sharing circles, exercises in gratitude, teaching authentic mindfulness and social and emotional learning through authentic peer interactions.

Professional Artist Workshop: PHS: Judy Buckley

The unique opportunity to share creative aspirations with, ask questions of, learn techniques from and be inspired by a professional artist. This workshop will focus on oil painting techniques and topics such as: approaches to composition in drawing and painting from observation such as gesture, tonal design, proportion and atmospheric color harmony and observational painting as a practice and a source for other work.

Virtual Business Accounting: PHS: Ashley Nussbaum

Virtual Business – Accounting brings accounting to life by letting students learn accounting on a business THEY run. With the online simulation, students are more vested in the numbers, and learning the fundamentals of accounting, because the numbers come from a business the students are running. This simulation is ideal for teaching accounting, forensic accounting, managerial accounting, finance, and introduction to business.

Farm to Classroom: PHS: Oren Levi

The goal of this project is to create an empowering and engaging farm-to-table cooking program for high school students that builds momentum for establishing new food science coursework at the high school level. Activities include five-senses, hands-on lessons in the garden, in the kitchen and at the table, with contributing lessons from professional chefs and an edible gardens educator. The program will result in student empowerment, equity, applied learning in STEAM and beyond, sustainability education, and community awareness.