Announcing our Fall 2018 Grant Winners!
Kindergarten Light Lab Kits (Rowe School)
Grant applicants: Deborah Landry with Laura Elder and Karen Bradford
Every kindergarten student in Yarmouth will become a scientist and have the opportunity to explore and study light in an exciting way. This grant will provide a light lab kit to all seven of our kindergarten classrooms. The kit will include lenses, prisms, and a colored light ray box. They will use mirrors and flashlights too. Students will discover light is needed to see objects in the dark, light can travel through and also bounce off certain objects, light can bend, it has many colors, and light also has energy. This will become an innovative science unit for our youngest learners every spring.
Growing Our Brains (Rowe School)
Kindergarten students at Rowe School are learning about Growth Mindset, and the importance of working hard to solve challenges, working as a team, being kind, and never giving up. This grant will create “grow your brain” stations in every kindergarten classroom. These stations will include special Lego machine kits and beginner robot kits and accessories. Young students often learn best through play, and they will use these tools and toys to solve problems, work as a team, build social skills, and have fun. It will help them better understand the concept of Growth Mindset.
Grant applicants: 3rd Grade Teachers
A makerspace is a community destination where students can create, solve problems, and work as a team. This grant will provide a makerspace in all third grade classrooms so children can learn through creation. Teachers are always looking for new ideas to incorporate into their lessons, beyond the traditional lecture-style learning. These incredible STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics) carts will allow students to come up with ideas for projects, learn that ideas may not always work, and failure is ok – just keep trying! These carts will give students everything they need to put their STEAM skills into action as they invent, innovate, and discover with tools, tubes, gears, wood supplies, robots, and robotic kits.
Staff and Student Mindfulness (Yarmouth Elementary School)
This grant is designed to improve student and staff wellness at Yarmouth Elementary School. Mindfulness is the nonjudgmental awareness of the present moment. It helps people of all ages respond calmly to situations, improve mental health, and cope with stress. YEF will help bring a mindfulness workshop to YES educators. The workshop will give staff an introduction to mindfulness and share how it can be incorporated into classrooms. A mindfulness coach will lead the staff workshop but will also spend six weeks at YES visiting all classrooms. The coach will help students practice mindfulness, focus their minds, and have compassion for others. Teachers will be able to observe and learn as well. This innovative approach to wellness will have a positive impact on students and staff.
Grant applicants: Deborah Landry with Kate Parkin
A wireless weather station is coming to Yarmouth Elementary School, and all Yarmouth schools will be able to gather weather data from this device. Many grade levels study weather. Fourth grade, in particular, will use this weather station as part of their earth and space science curriculum. It will send real-time data to indoor devices so students can monitor temperature, rainfall, wind speed and direction, air pressure, and more. This weather station can also link to other stations around the world so students can study weather and climate from regions across the United States and beyond. It will help them learn how to gather and sort data, make predictions, and use weather tools. It will teach them about major weather events happening around the world, and it will show them how weather impacts their daily lives at home.
Wind Firefly (Yarmouth Elementary School)
Grant applicants: Deborah Landry with Kate Parkin
Third graders learn about many types of energy, and this grant will allow them to investigate how energy transfers from one object to another. They will also study how energy can change forms. This grant will introduce them to a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) challenge demonstrating how wind energy can produce electrical energy and, in turn, power a light. YEF will provide 22 mini wind turbine kits, and student must work with them to create a successful design. This grant also provides each third grade classroom with the children’s version of the inspirational story “The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind” so teachers can incorporate this book into the unit as well.
Fossil Labs at YES (Yarmouth Elementary School)
Grant applicants: Deborah Landry with Laura Wetmore and Kate Parkin
Third and fourth grade science lessons will be enhanced thanks to a YEF grant that funds an incredible collection of fossils. This new collection will help students understand the history of our planet, learn about habitats, work with maps, and discover how landforms and environments have changed over the years. They will observe and measure fossils to determine when the organism lived and compare them to living creatures today. Students love to hold real fossils and are much more engaged in the subject matter compared to when they read about fossils in a book or online.
Grant applicants: Chris Wentworth and Karin Ney
YEF is excited to provide hammocks and slacklines for Yarmouth Elementary School. This grant allows students to explore different ways to regulate their bodies and minds during their outside time. The school offers team sports and playground equipment at recess, but some students can find those options challenging and overwhelming. This grant gives children a space where they can unwind, refocus, and recharge in a different way. Children can work on building strength and balance, or enjoy a calming swing in a hammock.
Grant applicants: Jay Harrington with Rich Smith, Marti Jo Shaw, and Karen Jagolinzer
Get ready for a fun family night out at Harrison Middle School, and the evening will be all about math. This grant will bring famous mathematics educator and math game developer Greg Tang Jr. to Yarmouth. He will spend time conducting math workshops with fifth grade students, provide professional development for teachers, and host a math night for families. The night will be filled with fun math games and challenges for students, staff, and families. HMS hopes this event will inspire a love of math while giving students another opportunity to share their learning with their families.
Grant applicants: Morgan Cuthbert with Janice Medenica and Tate Gale
Seventh graders learn about organism life cycles and also marine ecosystems. This project brings both of those topics together while connecting students to their community. Students will learn about kelp. Kelp is a type of seaweed that increases oxygen levels in the ocean. Students will work to start growing kelp in classroom water tanks and be able to observe the process in their classroom for four weeks. From there, the school will give these new kelp lines to a local kelp farmer so they can continue to mature and help clean the waters of Casco Bay. Students will help harvest the kelp in the spring so they can witness the entire kelp life cycle. This will be a fantastic hands-on science lesson that will also help our local environment.
Investigating Dog Genes (Yarmouth High School)
Grant applicants: Elise McCormick with Hannah Grant, Abi Thornton, Kim Fuller, Deborah Landry, and Catie Wooten
AP Biology students will have the unique opportunity to study the DNA of dogs. They will collect saliva samples from their beloved family pets and use innovative technology and equipment to discover why dogs look the way they do. This opportunity will help students understand the technology and tools that biologists use in the real world, they will use the scientific process of trial and error, and it will help them understand genetic testing in humans as well.
Grant applicants: Marita O’Neill with Abby Hill, Jack Vigue, and Winnie Leahey
Director and acting coach Al Miller of the Brunswick Theater Project will assist students as they study Hamlet. They will work together to create a Hamlet iMovie. Students will read and discuss how Hamlet speaks to them as people living in the world today. They will then choose directors, assign characters, create scenes, pick costumes, and eventually film their portrayal of the play. This project-based learning opportunity with a local theater expert will help students have a better understanding of Shakespeare.
Heart Rate Monitors in Psychology (Yarmouth High School)
Grant applicant: Sarah Carrigan
Psychology students will study how the body reacts to the environment around it, and this grant will provide heart monitors for the class. Student will collect data and be able to see what role stress, exercise, and emotions have on their heart rate. These monitors can also be used as sleep trackers so students can track their sleep cycle and see what impact the proper amount of sleep has on their bodies. The connections that students make between mind and body will be used to inspire healthy habits inside and outside of school.