Small Grants Spring 2019

NEF Small Grants to Teachers

Spring 2016

The Board of the Northampton Education Foundation approved funding of $30,774 to 11 applicants in the Small Grants Program for the Spring 2016 cycle.

S16-1  Kindergarten Outdoor Classroom, Year 1                                                         $2500


Andrea Egitto, Michelle Smiarowski, Lisa Lebeau, Bill Owen           

This grant supports creation of an outdoor STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) activities space available to all kindergarten students.   Children will explore the concepts of water flow using tubes, funnels, mills, and landforms, and design and construction with varied materials such as natural blocks, logs, ramps and arches. While open to all students, the space would be of particular value to individual students who need a break from the routine of the day and will use the space while working with the guidance counselor or the special education teacher. This space will complement Focus K2, an integrated approach to play, for which teachers are being trained.


S16-2  Florence Heights Community Engagement Project, Year 2                         $2250


Rachel Ellis

This grant supports continuation of a community engagement and literacy program at the Florence Heights housing complex.   Once a month, for one hour, from October 2016 – June 2017, teachers will engage children and their families in an activity such as partner reading of a book the child can take home, playing math games and journaling.  This project aims to strengthen the connection between these families and Ryan Road school.


S16-3  Leeds School Community Outreach Program, Year 2                                   $2500 Heide Eriksen, MaryJo Nagle, Leslie Macutkiewicz, Lisette Rodriguez

This project is designed to create a supportive educational collaborative between students and their family’s from Meadowbrook Apartments and Leeds Elementary School. The purpose of this proposal is to build an onsite teaching community that strengthens student/family learning in content areas such as reading, math, technology and art. Twice a month for 6 months (11 sessions) between October 2016 and April 2017, a team of educators from Leeds Elementary School will work with students and their families for two hours at the Meadowbrook complex in the areas of Lego Robotics and keyboarding, Literacy, Math and Art.                                                                                         


S16-4  JFK Technology Conference 2016, Year 2                                                         $1925           


Dinah  Mack, Molly McLoughlin, John Crescitelli

JFK Middle School will sponsor a two-day intensive technology conference open to faculty and staff. Participants will be trained on all aspects of Google and move beyond Google apps to explore the many free resources currently available to develop their curriculum. With access to the support and guidance of the conference facilitators, participants will be asked to utilize what they have learned to complete a culminating project that they will implement in the 2016-2017 academic year.


S16-5  Theater Outreach, Year 1                                                                                      $3000


Stephen Eldredge

The NHS Theater Outreach project will work with a consultant to involve students from every part of the theater program in developing productions that can tour and perform for other schools in the district, community organizations (such as the Northampton Senior Center), and in statewide Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild (METG) competitions. The grant will support membership in the METG, which will also provide study and audition opportunities.


S16-6  3D Modeling/CNC STEAM Bootcamp, Year 1                                                    $2999


Jeromie Whalen

Partnering with individuals from the UMass College of Engineering and Computer Aided Design (CAD) Club, this project will offer a 4-week workshop for students to introduce them to 3D modeling through the use of Autodesk Fusion360 CAD software. The workshop culminates with the printing of students’ 3D and CNC models.     


S16-7  Math Recovery Book Group, Year 2                                                                   $3500           


Mary Cowhey, Beth Brady, Tasha Rimany, Kate Natale

This grant support year two of a Math Recovery book group, using the book Teaching Number in the Classroom with 4-8 Year Olds by Robert J Wright et al, to support teachers who will get trained in Math Recovery in September 2016. Participants will read, try out activities together, make teaching materials that teachers can take, go back and implement these in our classrooms, and reflect on that teaching and learning.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

S16-8  Arts Integrated Curriculum Enhancement Language Learning Disabilities Students, Year 1                                                                                                                $2850           


Michelle Carr-Mal, Deb Willis

Arts Integrated Curriculum Enhancement (AICE) is a targeted arts integration literacy curriculum specifically designed for students in grades 1-5 in the Language Learning Disabilities (LLD) program in the Northampton Public Schools. Teachers and students will work with Enchanted Circle Theater (ECT) to implement two projects: Reading Alive: a workshop/performance designed to engage children and family audiences in dramatic readings and language-rich arts activities as strategy to introduce the children to story-theater and dramatic word play; and From Page to Stage: Using a storybook as a jumping off point for both academic and social learning, students embody the story physically, explore domain specific vocabulary, engage in read aloud skills, and investigate concepts such as character, setting, and plot.


S16-9  Life in a Changing Climate, Year 1                                                                       $4500


Kate Parrot, Dan Moylan

Science teachers from JFK Middle School and Northampton High School will partner with Mass Audubon’s Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary to bring engaging, hands-on, and standards-based lesson on climate change to our students. Students and teachers will about climate change and its impacts on the local and global environment, along with empowering students to take action in their homes and community.


S16-10 Development Techniques for Students with Severe Sensory Challenges,

Year 1                                                                                                                    $3250           


Linda Mondschein, Gina Roman        

This grant supports creating a program for the growing number of students at NHS and JSS who have severe sensory challenges through training on sensory integration techniques for ESPs and special education staff. And creation of “sensory rooms at each of the three schools. Staff will use these spaces to work with each student to design strategies for dealing with severe sensory overload/or under-registration, and help them gain independence and life skills in these areas.


S16-11 Garden Club, Year 1                                                                                             $1500

NHS+Smith Voc

Madge Evers  

This grants supports the after-school Garden Club at Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School (SVAHS). The club will introduce gardening to high school students and foster responsibility to and a deeper understanding of the environment. Using the SVAHS resources, including a greenhouse and a large garden site on agricultural land leased by the state to the school. Students will learn about soil structure and health, seed propagation, plant cultivation and care, and the importance of irrigation. Weed and pest management without the use of chemicals will be practiced. The garden site will allow students to take temporary ownership of a garden plot and experience the magic and rewards of growing vegetables and flowers.