Grantee Discussion: Did you continue your grant project after the funded year?

After you completed your Student Achievement or Learning & Leadership Grant project, were you able to successfully continue the work beyond the funded year? Is so, why were you able to continue? To what would you attribute your success? If not, what were your primary challenges?

Share your thoughts below.


Kara Clatyon
April 19, 2012 @ 10:03 AM
I have been able to continue work on my grant beyond the funding year to attend the National Association of Media Literacy Education biennial conference. Since attending, our school has implemented a Not In Our School (anti-bullying) program, our media literacy units are much more solid and adhere to ISTE standards. In addition, I have provided three days of inservice to a group of teachers in the Battle Creek School District.
Julie Raynor
April 19, 2012 @ 10:10 AM
We have been able to continue our project: Camp Shout Out, for young people who stutter, speech-language pathologists, and graduate students. Not only have we been able to continue this project, but we have also been able to expand. For the 2012 session we have participants coming from all over the United States, Canada, Guatemala and even New Zealand. We have receiveing a tremendous amount of press and local support. We have been able to collarborate with other school districts, Universities and the Stuttering Foundation. For the 2012-13 school year we are providing a 4 day inservice about working with young people who stutter for our West Michigan speech and language pathologists.
Deborah Alcorn
April 19, 2012 @ 10:14 AM
I have been able to continue my grant beyond funding because I have implemented what I learned in class into my teaching. I have incorporated more hip-hop and spoken word into my curriculum. Additionally, I have made stronger connections with a local spoken word group and they wrote a grant to give a ten week workshop to at-risk students at my school, which is going on right now. The students spend two hours a day twice a week after school working on performance poetry and they will earn a credit for creative writing if they complete the program. Additionally, one of my students is in the process of qualifying to attend Brave New Voices this summer and I think my commitment to spoken word has been part of that process. I hope she qualifies!

I think that the class I took truly made a difference in my teaching and I thank you again!
Nicole Titus
April 19, 2012 @ 10:43 AM
Our grant supported a study group for mentor teachers to investigate the benefits of using co-teaching models with interns (student teachers) within our Professional Development School (PDS) partnership with Penn State. Co-teaching continues to be a critical element in our PDS. It has shown to be a way for interns and mentors to learn and reflect on their practice. It also benefits the students by lowering the teacher-student ratio, bringing two perspectives to the classroom, and being able to do more complex classroom lessons. Two years after the grant our co-teaching study group has grown to include interns and professional development associates (student teaching supervisors) into the conversations.
Caroline Hay
April 19, 2012 @ 10:59 AM
Unfortunately, the class for which I received my grant was cut last Spring, but in the interim I have been using the training I received and additional materials I was able to purchase to continue developing curriculum. Throughout the year I have been in talks to bring back the class for next year ("Race in the 21st Century") and things are looking very positive, so I hope that next year I will be using all that I was able to learn through the grant and the new curriculum I was able to develop with students again.
Kelly Boutin
April 19, 2012 @ 12:55 PM
We are so fortunate to have been able to keep our grant project going since being awarded the NEA grant in 2009. We used the grant to initially purchase the Lexia Computer Reading program for our at-risk readers for use during our after school reading program and during the school day. We have great success with this program strengthening our students phonological/phonics skills.
Lisa Wiggins
April 19, 2012 @ 1:06 PM
The Learning and Leadership grant was successful in providing our district a springboard in which to create a culture of professional, collaborative learning in the areas of literacy learning.
We continue to provide professional development opportunities including working with a literacy consultant, collaborative planning, book studies and attending conferences.
Strong district leadership and a knowledgeable, highly committed staff have lead to our continued growth and progress. It has been amazing to see the impact this has had on our students. The way they approach literacy AND learning is amazing!
Sergio Villegas
April 19, 2012 @ 1:27 PM
This first year of grant work has only been the beginning as my project involves a significant learning curve on my part before I can successfully share with my students.

For the first time in our districts history we are offering college prep physics to language learners, and for all my best intentions I have spent much of the year falling on my face given the challenging content combined with challenging population. I have had recent breakthroughs in altering lesson delivery through to an online format using some of the tools purchased through my grant. the EL population response was out of this world, they loved the opportune to work individually on compters and assess themselves, then come to me in small groups for targeted support.

I am only saddened (for this group) that it took me 6months to figure out what they needed. I cannot imagine how much better I will be at sharing this culture with next years students as well as with other teachers in my district.

Thanks NEA, Jesse, et al

Rosie Nedry
April 20, 2012 @ 8:17 AM
The NEA Foundation Grant we received was used to build a greenhouse for outdoor and environmental education. Sadly, due to budget cuts, our school was moved to a different building, and the greenhouse has deteriorated. I still have classroom materials that I have incorporated into other classes, and will continue to emphasize the importance of being a good steward of our environment.
Teresa Staton-Soliman
April 24, 2012 @ 5:45 PM
I loved my NEA Grant for Kindles! We are so excited because we are able to continue using them with our students this year and we were even allotted more funds from PTO to help us buy more books for the teachers to use! The students love them and beg to use them. We are piloting one in first grade with all the new additions to the Kindle Picture book library for kids 5-8. The kids in first grade were beside themselves with excitement! Grades 3-5 students can't wait for the teachers to allow them to use their Kindles! Thank you again NEA for helping us! Without your grant our kids would not have such great technology!
Julianne Evangelista
April 26, 2012 @ 7:04 PM
The funds from my grant was used to buy materials to build sensory motor learning kits for the 3 elementary schools in my district. These kits provide hands on learning opportunities for kindergarten students who need extra support. The materials provide a multitude of learning opportunities in early literacy, math and handwriting- all geared towards the common core standards. They will be used year after year by teachers, para professionals and parent helpers to provide a multi- sensory learning approach for "at risk" students. THANK YOU!
Travis Anderson/Laura Fitzpatrick
May 4, 2012 @ 2:20 PM
The NEA Foundation grant we were awarded was used to purchase several iPod Touch devices, a Macbook computer, and applications for student learning through the use of iPods. With these tools, our students were able to use hands on technology to enhance classroom concepts. As a result of these new technologies added to our elementary school building, student achievement scores were higher compared to previous years. Our new iPods have been able to be designed for specific curriculum areas and for academic intervention times for students who experience learning difficulties. Our building goal is to continue adding new applications and using our new tools to continue raising student achievement with the use of iPods. Thank you NEA for giving our school the ability to purchase technology tools.
Lisa Hilberg
May 7, 2012 @ 2:10 PM
Yes, we will be able to continue our project into future years! Teachers and administrators with our school district were trained on how to use the Charlotte Danielson teacher evaluation rubric. This training will allow us to share this knowledge with future teachers in our school district.
Celeste Crsue
May 18, 2012 @ 6:39 AM
Yes, our project will continue. The NEA Foundation funded "Kindles in the Classroom" where we purchased 27 Kindle Touch machines for 3 reading labs. The students love the technology and can use the machines for the foreseeable future. We are so appreciative of the NEA Foundation - thanks is not enough.
Leslie Parker
May 18, 2012 @ 10:44 AM
Over the past three years, Fox Road has "rebuilt" its bookroom to provide our teachers with a rich resource of guided reading materials for literacy instruction. Along with our NEA grant, we used an additional $10,500 of grant money to purchase over 300 6-packs of guided reading texts for our school's bookroom. In addition, our school's Title I program donated over 400 6-packs of guided reading texts for school-wide use. With the assistance of our media specialist and her staff, all of these books have been catalogued and are part of our school library's collection. Over the past year, the media staff has updated the bookroom collection by removing outdated and damaged books. These books have been given to teachers for their individual classroom libraries.
Fox Road is truly grateful for the NEA grant that assisted us in creating this great literacy resource for our teachers. Thank you!
Erica Kogel
May 25, 2012 @ 3:36 PM
At Hayward Elementary we were able to use th NEA grant to purchase 8 iPads and many applications (apps) to promote speech, language, and social development. These tools can be use indefinitely with future students and addition applications purchased for a fraction of he cost of instructional materials. This grant allowed us to invest in equipment that will be used for years to come!
Cynthia Lake
May 30, 2012 @ 8:41 AM
I did win a grant from the NEA foundation to initiate a Project called "Imagine Mars". Since the grant did not arrive until second semester, I was able to stretch the dollars into next fall when the project will come to fruition. I intend to further engage the the students who were exposed to the project this year, and have since received additional instruction in advertising, product development, illustration, and fine arts. All of my new students will benefit as well, as they join the Project. During the summer, I will meet with outside providers to set up a series of further interactions with my students. The grant not only afforded much need funds for supplies; it enabled the students to create 3 d and 2d models as evidence of their problem solving and innovative thinking regarding the needs and differences between our world and a utopian "Martian world".

1. Grant $ provided funding for instructional materials (we always need MORE in the visual ARTS)
2 Grant afforded my students the opportunity for expanded experiences and deeper investigation of an idea, exposure to career choices and empowerment to imagine freely.
3. Grant augmented lessons that focus on problem solving, creative thinking, innovation, integration of curriculum/ ideas, and spawned reflection that led to alternative solutions.

After the initial roll out of Imagine Mars, I feel that we are midway though the process. We are linked to various local institutions and non-profits in the arts and sciences, and local artists, staged to work with students next year. The landing of the Mars Rover will facilitate/ inspire their thinking as students see the Imagine Mars project focusing on REAL problems to solve. So far, The Never Before Seen nature of their solutions even inspires professionals. One of the student's art works, (created due to funds from the NEA grant), will be on display at the City Hall for a year.

I absolutely recommend that teachers consider applying for the NEA grant. The process engaged me in problem solving, the development of innovative instructional strategies, and led me to connect to local institutions and entities who might otherwise not have interacted with my students. As a life long learner, I am delighted to find out more about my world and other environments. I am always in pursuit of discovering ways/ experiences that help students learn and retain information, in order to bridge concepts that ultimately define their own world view.
Additional funding is ALWAYS greatly appreciated. Thanks to the NEA Foundation for the grant to inspire creativity.

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