2013 Fall Mini Grants

“Girls in the Run Program” submitted by Kellie Stern  – Alice Gustafson School


This program was previously funded for H.C. Storm School and includes 3rd – 5th grade girls.  It combines training for a 5K running event with lesson plans to promote positive mental, physical, social and emotional health and meets after school twice a week for an hour and 15 minutes in the spring.  The lesson format consists of a “check in” to see how each girl is feeling, a game in which the topic of the lesson is incorporated, warm up and stretching, running, cool down and each session ends with a cheer and a healthy snack.  The girls participate in a group 5K running event at the season’s conclusion.  Completing the 5K will give the girls the self confidence that comes from accomplishment as well as a framework for setting and achieving academic and personal goals.



If Peter Pugmill Processed a Pile of Pretty Pottery, how much Pretty Pottery could Peter Pugmill Process? submitted by Dawn Zalkus – Batavia High School


The Art Program at Batavia High School currently uses modeling clay for classes.  During the process of making clay (ceramic) projects, approximately one-third of the clay is discarded as it becomes dry or filled with air pockets through student use and is no longer usable after one use ~~ approximately $750 of discarded clay.  A Pug Mill is a machine that recycles the clay by rehydrating and removing air bubbles, and the clay becomes good as new.  Approximately 200 participants in the spring of 2014 will be taking art classes.



Incorporating Technology Within the Classroom submitted by Carol Autenrieth – Hoover-Wood School


Funding would provide for the purchase of a Mimio View, or document camera.  This technology in the classroom setting enhances learning by projecting materials onto the white board.  This technology aids in instruction and provides a visual learning tool to increase student achievement and involvement as well as allowing students to collaborate and communicate with each other.  Approximately 70 students in the current fifth grade and future fifth graders will benefit from this technology.



Incorporating Technology within the Classroom submitted by Julia Murphy – Hoover-Wood School


See above description.


Enhancing Student Engagement with the Mimio View submitted by Todd Swanson – Hoover-Wood School


See same description.




Counseling Academically at-Risk Students due to Excessive Absences Utilizing Data with Chromebook submitted by CaraLeigh Heidgen  – Rotolo Middle School


This project focuses on the at-risk population at RMS by targeting students who are academically unsuccessful, have been absent 5% or more days, and/or have 3 or more office discipline referrals.  These students will have also shown minimal to no progress in lower tiered interventions.  By purchasing 2 Chromebooks to utilize for SIG (Social Academic Intervention Groups) which is part of the ASCA (American School Counseling Association) model, this would emphasize data driven decisions and research based interventions.  The department would be offering tier 2 groups (SAIG) to at-risk students in all grade levels by focusing on building skills and other SAIGs may focus on issues such as social skills, organizational skills and/or respectful behavior.  Funding would provide for the purchase of two Chromebooks. 



Chromebooks for Counseling At-Risk Students with Discipline Referrals submitted by Julie Webb – Rotolo Middle School


See above description.



Utilizing Chromebooks to Supplement Social Academic Intervention Groups for Academically At-Risk Students submitted by Julie Neece – Rotolo Middle School


See same description.



Rekenrek submitted by Jodi Bird, Jennifer Torgerson, MaryAnn Weidner, and Lisa Casbarian – H.C. Storm School


Funding would provide for the purchase of Rekenreks to support their goal of increasing math knowledge at the first grade level as well as the idea of differentiated learning in their classrooms.  Rekenreks provide a visual and kinesthetic model that encourages children and solidifies their understanding to build numbers in groups of five and to use doubling and halving, and to count on to known relationships to solve addition and subtraction problems. Since there are students who need additional practice, above and beyond that of their peers to master these concepts, Rekenreks offer visual pictures for the young learners.  All H.C. Storm first grade students will benefit from using the Rekenreks



            Can You Hear Me Now? submitted by Holly Deitchman –   Batavia High School


Batavia Access Television provides equipment and support to BHS broadcasting students. Real-world experience is found in and outside of the BATV Studios.  Inside the studio, BATV provides the students with intercom communication tools that connect the Control Room Director to the Floor Director and the Camera Operators.  That intercom system includes headsets with microphones that are hard-wired to a junction box inside the control room.  As for field productions, BATV has the same crew positions, Director and Camera Operators, but not the same equipment.  The studio is hard-wired for communication, it is not portable because the camera operators are a farther distance away from the director with the director in a press box or sound stage, while the camera operators are either on the field or on the performance stage.  This scenario eliminates the ability for the director to communicate with the camera operators. Approximately 70 students per semester or 140 per year will participate in the broadcasting classes and this equipment will impact 1,400 students at BHS over 10 years.  The award would purchase a set of (8) two-way radios to use in the field productions throughout the community.




Collection Connection: Teaching Students How to Access Public Library e-books & Audiobooks with Their iPads submitted by Daniel Russo – Batavia High School


Students have been effectively taught how to connect to the book and database collections provided by public libraries.  Usage statistics clearly show a marked increase of research activity during school months because students are instructed in the use of these resources.  Collection Connection will focus on teaching students how to access two additional collections: e-books and downloadable audio books from their personal devices, therefore making the process easier. All high school students have the potential to benefit from Collection Connection.  Funds received will purchase an iPad 4, protective case and budget for apps.



Bring the Blocks Back! submitted by Amanda Karasinski and Jane Boss – Hoover-Wood School


Children used to play with blocks in early elementary grades.  This was built into their day as “free play” or “choice time”.  Educators now lament that there simply is no time for block play any more.  The goal of this project is to use block play to facilitate social/emotional and expressive language growth in children identified for the SEAL (Social-Emotional-Academic Learning) Program, Primary level. Children identified for the SEAL program have a variety of disabilities that often interfere with socialization, emotional regulation, and expressive language across academic areas.  Blocks are a valuable learning tool.  Students participating in this project will be in the SEAL Primary classroom; grades K - 2.


The Sky’s the Limit submitted by Monika Hubble and Lynn Swider – Rotolo Middle School


Funding would provide for purchasing sky image replacement light panels installed in the windowless spaces at RMS.  These panels will be replacing the current light panels in the windowless math skills class and sixth grade hallways.  These sky image ceiling panels give the enclosed space a sense of openness and the feeling that there is a skylight in the room.  This request is a continuation of a mini grant awarded in 2012 and this environmental enhancement did benefit students in the enclosed spaces of the computer lab, therefore, this would benefit student’s performance in math support classroom and improve behavior in hallways.  Grades 6-8 students will benefit from the sky panels in math skills class and all 6th grade students (500+) and staff using hallways.



Scholastic Arts Classroom Magazine submitted by Katherine Cessna and Jenna McKnight – Rotolo Middle School


This award would provide a year-long subscription to Scholastic Arts Magazine which will provide art and literature within the classroom.  This purchase will include thirty copies of this magazine along with a teacher’s copy that includes thought-provoking questioning and project ideas related to the monthly subscription. These magazines would assist in literacy goals as well as thought-provoking and higher level thinking questions included in the magazine that would be used in the class.  Students will routinely read within the art room and this would promote literacy and critical thinking while inspiring creativity.  Grades 6 – 8 will be participating in this proposed project or approximately 900 students will benefit from the magazine.




Heard a Good Book Lately? Submitted by Jamie Schumacher – Rotolo Middle School


This project focuses on the needs of readers who benefit from hearing a novel read in addition to seeing the text itself.  Audio books would be purchased for the classroom, and students can choose to listen to them while following along in the novel.  The novels purchased will be high-interest selections at the 4th – 6th grade level and targeting below-grade level readers.  Participating in the project will help students improve reading comprehension and reading fluency by giving them access to literature at their instructional level.  Pairing audio with reading the text improves vocabulary so students will hear unfamiliar written words pronounced correctly which will help them understand the story better.  Various titles from two different sources will be purchased for a total of 13 audio books.


Batavia Foundation for Educational Excellence:

PO Box 1003

Batavia, IL 60510


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