Spring 2021 Grants
YEF is pleased to fund a learning trip to Boston for the Yarmouth High School Black Student Alliance. The trip will be dedicated to exploring African American and Black history and culture. It will be an opportunity to celebrate the many contributions of the Black community, as well as look back at New England history from the perspective of a person of color. The Black Student Alliance was formed at YHS in October of 2020. This grant will impact its 20 members.
YEF is thrilled to bring working artist and climate scientist Jill Pelto to Harrison Middle School. She believes communicating about climate change is vital in helping more people understand how the world and their own community will look in the future. Pelto spent years studying glaciers in Antarctica and the northwestern United States. From there, she developed an innovative classroom curriculum that combines artwork with scientific data. Her lessons integrate art, science, language arts, and math – offering something for every kind of learner. Jill Pelto inspired learners at Yarmouth Elementary School in the Covid Spring of 2020, and this latest grant will now impact every 7th grade student at HMS.
Fall 2020 Grants
Spanish Conversation Immersion (Yarmouth High School)
Grant applicant: Vicky Kahan with Arabella Solari, Jack Vigue, and Mary Psyhogeos
YEF is thrilled to fund a unique world language opportunity for more than 50 students at Yarmouth High School. This grant will connect Yarmouth students with Spanish-speaking women in Guatemala through Project Olas. “Olas Moms” are women living in Guatemala City who are trained to help Spanish students improve their language skills and cultural competence. Each week, students will meet virtually with their “Olas Mom” for Spanish conversations and a closer look at what life is like in Guatemala. These sessions are facilitated by a Yarmouth teacher, as well as a member of the Project Olas staff. This initiative will allow students direct access to another culture in a creative and exciting way.
Antiracism and Bias Trainings (Yarmouth High School)
Grant applicant: Sarah Harrington with Amy Bongard, Justine Carlisle, Meghan Casey, Vicky Kahan, Amelia Kostin, Marita O’Neill, John Russell, and Leila Tati-Pambou
This YEF grant will provide professional development opportunities for Yarmouth High School staff – and students – that focus on antiracism and confronting bias. The grant funds several opportunities to work with a nationally-recognized group of educators that stress the importance of letting Black people, Indigenous People, and People of Color lead the antiracism work, especially in school districts with little diversity. These added learning opportunities will build on the work of the Yarmouth School Department’s Equity Task Force and its work with Maine Intercultural Communication Consultants and the Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine.
Emergency Covid Grants
Outdoor Classrooms (K-12)
Grant applicant: Dr. Dolloff and school principals
YEF is pleased to fund outdoor classroom space for our entire school community. This grant will impact every student in the Yarmouth School Department. We have funded large tents and awnings outside all school buildings, and we also purchased hemlock tree stumps and folding chairs for seating. These outdoor spaces will allow for mask breaks, lunch breaks, and an innovative classroom setting for students K-12
Covid restrictions mean all of the cozy area rugs and hard-to-clean comfy chairs in Rowe classrooms are now in storage. YEF is pleased to fund stadium chairs for every kindergarten and first grade student. These chairs are easy to carry and easy to clean. They can be used inside and outside, and they even have a fun pocket to hold favorite books. YEF is also funding fidget and sensory toys for our youngest learners as well. Waiting in line to wash hands, staying six feet apart, and keeping hands off friends is challenging for this age group. We’re happy to help support Rowe School in this important way.
Speech Language Intervention (Rowe School & YES)
Grant applicant: Jenny DiRusso
Yarmouth educators are looking for innovative ways to connect with special needs students during this pandemic. This YEF grant will be helpful, especially in remote settings. Story Champs is a language intervention program that will help teach students the skills needed for age-appropriate speaking, reading, and writing skills. It will help students who receive language-based intervention services such as speech/language, special education, or English Language Learner instruction. Unlike many language intervention programs, Story Champs utilizes stories and activities that are available for both remote and in-person learning. This program will be utilized by all K-4 students receiving speech-language intervention.
Math Intervention (YES)
Grant applicant: Lauren Scribner
Yarmouth Elementary School will have a new tool to help students with special math needs. Providing extra math help in a remote setting can be especially challenging, so YEF is launching the innovative Moving with Math program for grades 2-4. Moving with Math includes specialized printed and virtual materials. It includes individual math tool kits that can be brought home on remote learning days. This allows educators to meet special education academic needs across various platforms, which will be the key to a successful year of learning.
Classroom Microphones (YES)
Grant Applicant: Elke Tate
YEF will provide wireless microphones and voice amplifiers for Yarmouth Elementary School. These lightweight devices will help project teacher voices through masks and over construction noise. These are a proven tool to help students distinguish sounds, tune out distractions, and concentrate on what’s happening in class. These microphones benefit all students but are especially helpful to English Language Learners and students with ADHD, learning challenges, or hearing difficulty. We are excited to pilot this program to see if these devices are a good fit for all teachers this year and beyond.
Microscopic Engineering (HMS)
Grant applicant: Morgan Cuthbert with Tate Gale, Janice Medenica, and Michelle Raber
Seventh grade students use classroom microscopes to study life science and explore things they can’t see with the normal eye. Students would normally share microscopes, but this year, that presents a challenge. Thanks to this YEF grant, students will engineer and build their own digital microscope. This project will allow every student in the classroom and at home to have their own microscope when needed. Seventh graders start a unit on cells in October, and this Covid grant will allow all learners to have microscopes in time for studying cell structures.
YEF is pleased to help purchase the innovative Moby Max math instruction program to assist with hybrid and remote learning at Harrison Middle School. This will be helpful in situations where students are in different places – both physically and with regards to the curriculum – and it will act as a bridge that connects students to current content and practice problems. Student absences are beginning to climb as we enter the colder season and getting work to the students (with clear directions) is a challenge. Students can use this platform to easily supplement their math work outside of school as they learn from home.
Math Manipulatives for Remote Learners (Rowe & YES)
Grant Applicants: Katie Caron, Aimee Davis, and Laura Wetmore
Some of our incredible educators are in uncharted territory as fully-remote teachers this school year. After working with students remotely for a couple of weeks, they quickly realized students will need math tools in their hands to help enhance learning at home. The remote math program is very thorough, but the learning is all digital. Our youngest students, especially, need tools to learn instead of just looking at a screen. YEF will assist in funding math items such as base 10 blocks, snap cubes, write and wipe clocks, and more. Items will be made into math packages for remote learners at the K-4 level.