OAKHURST — Sierra Oakhurst Kiwanis recently awarded fifteen mini-grants to local schools for art, music, science and math supplies, and learning tools that are not covered in the general school budget. The mini-grants funded total $9,802. Schools are listed in alphabetical order.
Chawanakee Academy teacher Becky Cairns was awarded a mini-grant to cover costs associated with the schools theater program, including props, scripts, programs, royalty fees, wireless microphones and other necessities needed to stage production. Their request was granted and the department plans to purchase supplies for backdrops and costumes, enabling students to take on responsibilities including those of actors, directors, stylists, stage crew, and more. The school is currently in its eighth year of a drama program available to students K-12.
Chawanakee Academy lead teacher Lana Jackson requested funds to facilitate participation in the First Lego League Waste Wise program, where students will learn to look at trash in a new way through researching their topic and building their findings and solution out of Lego blocks. The mini-grant was awarded to purchase a base Lego kit specially designed with activities to enhance the program, which will benefit Chawanakee students K-8.
Coarsegold Elementary and Rivergold Elementary schools will benefit from the grant request of music instructor Cristel Biasell, who received funds for annual maintenance and repair of band instruments at both schools. The mini-grant will benefit all music students at Coarsegold and Rivergold.
Coarsegold Elementary kindergarten teacher Hilary Campbell wanted to purchase a Promethean interactive whiteboard she can use with existing flipcharts of alphabets, numbers, sight words, holidays and social skills. This mini grant is expected to encourage learning for approximately 25 young students each year for a decade.
Coarsegold Elementary students in fifth grade will appreciate the request of teacher Tracey Duncan, who received a mini-grant to facilitate at least five art projects including clay sculpture, geometric string art, Origami art, watercolors and paper crafts. The gift from Kiwanis will enable the school to purchase all the supplies needed for the class.
Coarsegold Elementary teacher Mindy Gresham asked for and received funds to purchase jump ropes for the entire student body of 480 students, and they’ll be jumping for joy as the school promotes healthier lifestyles through exercise.
Coarsegold Elementary teacher Kimberly Lawson made a request for an HP LaserJet Pro 400 color printer and ink cartridges and art supplies to create a memory book for each kindergarten students, and received a mini-grant that will benefit 150 students as well as on-going use of the printer.
North Fork Elementary math and science teacher Katie Kelly intends to purchase an atomic structure and chemical reactions unit to enhance the outdated curriculum. She received a grant to buy four periodic tile sets and three atom building games to be used for many years to come.
North Fork Elementary‘s entire student body of approximately 270 students will benefit from the request of fine arts specialist Robyn Flory, who received funds to maintain the fine arts program and continue the three plays that are produced throughout the school year.
Oakhurst Elementary received a mini-grant at the request of Principal Kathleen Murphy, who plans to purchase specific art materials including watercolor paper, paints and oil pastels to be used in the school’s art program provided by local artists. The award will enhance the education of 172 students in third, fourth and fifth grades.
Oakhurst Elementary educational coach Robin Ward received a mini-grant to purchase mosaic kits that will help 45 students to understand and apply skills through hands-on discovery in geometry.
Oak Creek Intermediate and Wasuma Elementary schools have received a grant requested by instrumental music director Francisco Marquez, to purchase new beginning instruments, new music, and for annual maintenance and repairs of the school band instruments. It’s anticipated that this award will affect countless students over several years.
Spring Valley Elementary middle school students will benefit from the purchase of additional art supplies requested by teacher Kim Boatman. About sixty students will participate in the newly created after school art program.
Wasuma Elementary teachers Nicole Star and Elaine Alger requesting funds for a program that consists of drawing lessons, perspective, and composition, as well as art history. The mini-grant provides resources for the program, previously funded by the Parent-Teacher Club, open to all fourth and fifth grade students at the school.
Wasuma Elementary teacher Heather Archer received a mini-grant to replenish lab equipment and add supplies that relate to the new science standards, for the benefit of more than a hundred students every year.
The total funded by Oakhurst-Sierra Kiwanis mini-grants for 2015 was $9,802.
Submitted by Jeanne Cochran, Oakhurst-Sierra Kiwanis