K-5 STEM Classroom grants seek to promote the equitable access to and increased quality of STEM programs in elementary schools in order to better prepare students for a career pathway to success in the New Nevada. This grant program aligns with three key strategies identified in the State STEM Strategic Plan.
- To increase the use of hands-on, evidence-based, experiential STEM learning in grades K-5.
- To increase the percentage of elementary schools that teach science three-plus hours per week.
- To increase interest in, awareness of, and achievement in the subjects of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in grades K-5, particularly amongst demographic groups that are traditionally underrepresented in STEM.
K-5 STEM Classroom grants are micro-grants of up to $1,500 targeted at elementary educators to purchase small classroom equipment for innovative and creative STEM projects that align with classroom instruction and increase students’ exposure to STEM.
Bordewich Bray Elementary School, Carson City School District, was awarded funding for Desert Research Institute (DRI) Snow Collection Kits and will assist in turning students and families into citizen scientists who are directly participating in snow science data collection and research in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. STEM educators at DRI will provide each grade level with a workshop to introduce the STEM research project. Each family in the school will receive a Snow Collection Kit. The kit contains an Easy Macro Lens, black felt snow crystal capture card, and thermometer. Families will use their own smartphones to take pictures of freshly-fallen snow crystals, then uploaded into the Citizen Science Tahoe mobile application in collaboration with UC Davis. Teachers will incorporate this data into classroom science lessons on weather and research.
Oasis Academy Public Charter School was awarded funding for a Hydro Geology Stream Table for the fourth grade. The stream table provides students with an excellent means of familiarizing themselves with the major processes of earth sculpture. With the help of the stream table, it is possible for students to see landforms that they would not have a chance to observe in the field. In addition, it gives them the unique opportunity of creating and witnessing the natural geological processes that are too slow to experience in reality, making it a valuable laboratory tool in teaching physical geology. Students will be able to simulate and observe the stream process, mass wasting, the formation of coastal features, the action of glaciation, and the structural deformation of the earth’s crust.
Mark Twain Elementary School, Carson City School District, was awarded funding for Robotics & Coding. This project begins with the STEM Coach providing in-class robotics and coding lessons to at least 75% of kindergarten through fifth grade students. The classroom teachers will have the ability to check out the robotics kits from a STEM activities library created with these materials. In the fall of 2018, the STEM Coach will also provide an opportunity for students to participate in an after school Robotics Club.
Bordewich Bray Elementary School, Carson City School District, was awarded funding for STEM supplies for their Autism Program. The K-2 Autism Program previously had no STEM kits or supplies. These kits, curriculum and other hands on items will be used to spark the interest of students in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM). The selected items are geared to meet the varied range of interests and ability levels of the students in this program.
Fernley Elementary School, Lyon County School District, was awarded funding for ROK Blocks. The ROK Blocks is a kindergarten educational program which includes a plethora of elements: blocks, mats and plan sheets. This educational curriculum has been designed to engage students' minds, eyes, and fine motor skills, as well as boost an understanding of core STEM competencies. With this hands on STEM curriculum of ROK Block, students will build confidence, their curiosity, attentiveness, and persistence; which in turn will strength academic readiness and success.
Spanish Springs Elementary School, Washoe County School District, was awarded funding for FOSS Weather & Water Kit to focus on weather, water and atmosphere. Students learn about atoms, molecules, states of matter, climate, precipitation, evaporation, condensation, currents, convection, energy transfer, solar angle, radiation, meteorology, density, weather tools, and record daily information based on our weather. The kit includes a class set of student textbooks, materials for experiments, teacher's guide, and online access to videos/resources.
Sepulveda Elementary School, Washoe County School District, was awarded funding for FOSS Weather & Water Kit to provide students with all the materials and instruction needed to meet the NGSS and the NVACS. This kit covers the factors that interact and influence weather and climate on Earth. Students will study weather, the water cycle, climate and the effects on humans in the environment.
Peavine Elementary School, Washoe County School District, was awarded funding for a FOSS Next Generation Energy Science Kit to be shared between two fourth grade teachers to support their science instruction. This kit will provide students the opportunity to conduct controlled experiments while investigating electricity and magnetism. Both teachers will receive district-supported professional development on how to implement the kit and then share between their classrooms, providing students with a common learning outcome based on the Next Generation Science Standards, as well as promote cross-curricular instruction in reading, writing and mathematics.
Riverview Elementary School, Lyon County School District, was awarded two classroom grants to purchase iPads. iPads will be used for research and data collection in group projects during class and will also be used during in-school STEM time to teach coding using robots.
Gomes Elementary School, Washoe County School District, was awarded funding for a FOSS Next Generation Energy Complete Module for students to explore the concepts of energy and change, waves, and energy transfer in the Energy Module. They will experience electricity and magnetism as related effects and learn useful applications of electromagnetism in everyday life. They will also consider energy transfer, force, and motion in different systems.
Peavine Elementary School, Washoe County School District, was awarded funding for a FOSS Next Generation Energy Science Kit Pebbles, Sand and Silt Science Kit to be shared between three second grade teachers to support their science instruction. This kit will provide students the opportunity to use simple tools to observe, describe, analyze and sort solid materials. The three teachers will receive district-supported professional development on how to implement the kit and then share it amongst their classrooms, providing students with a common learning outcome based on the Next Generation Science Standards as well as promote cross-curricular instruction in reading, writing and mathematics.
Mt. Rose Language Academy, Washoe County School District, was awarded funding to duplicate and convert two existing DRI Science Alive Green Boxes to bilingual boxes. The Green Boxes identified are Waste Warriors and Energy Efficiency. The idea behind this project was to convert existing Green Boxes that focused on environmental sustainability and STEM (Waste/Energy Efficiency), since they include involving homes and parents in activities that change home and family behaviors. Funds for this grant would include purchasing two sets of 15 bilingual Spanish books to integrate STEM and bilingual literacy in the classroom that will become part of the new bilingual Green Boxes. Funds will also be used for only the non-consumable materials of the Green Box also including the suitcase, binder, flash drive and teacher materials.
Riverview Elementary School, Lyon County School District, was awarded two classroom grants spanning grades 1-5 for curriculum and classroom teaching demonstrations from Sierra Nevada Journeys (SNJ). This classroom grant will supplement FOSS curriculum already in use at the school. SNJ will provide curriculum and three model lessons. Insights from the model lessons will be incorporated throughout the rest of the school year. Funding from this grant will benefit 336 students.