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Spring 2014 Gripp Grants Awarded

For the 2013-2014 school year the Foundation has awarded over $30,000 in Gripp Grants!  And, this year all six D39 schools received at least one grant to expand, enrich and complement the curriculum. Four grants were approved for the spring grant cycle.

Parlez vous francais? Highcrest’s French teacher, Katie Fox’s students will be able to develop vocabulary, grasp story meaning and flow with new French fairy tale books purchased with her Gripp Grant.  Using familiar tales will give students confidence, a frame of reference and enhance the foreign language reading experience.

“Recess is a time for fun, but it isn’t much fun for kids who feel left out or lonely”. Ms. Belconis’ 5th grade class at Highcrest read that quote in a Scholastic News magazine article from a boy who came up with the idea for a “Buddy Bench”. The class submitted a grant and now HMS will have two Buddy Benches on their playground where kids can sit if they aren’t feeling included and others will know they want to talk or play. The benches can be for someone who needs a friend and for someone who can become a friend. They are a great tool for teaching empathy towards peers.

Romona’s playground will have a new Gaga Ball arena next fall thanks to a Foundation grant. This game is a form of dodge ball, played in a wooden, octagonal-shaped arena, that everyone can play. Gaga Ball will give the students another organized game to play at recess and in PE class.

Multimedia books offer additional benefits that print books can not including note-taking and highlighting abilities, a dictionary, read-aloud features, follow-along text highlighting and year-round 24/7 accessibility from home of school.  Romona library will have a new multimedia book collection using funds from our fourth Gripp Grant this spring. The collection will include eBooks, interactive eBooks and digital audiobooks.

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