2011 Foundation Grants: Middle School Campus
BUILDING ENGINEERS AND DOCTORS OF TOMORROW
Kerri Shields, Carl Pruel, and Jennifer Sarchet sponsor the “Building Engineers and Doctors of Tomorrow” at Shallowater Middle School. This program allowed middle school students to participate in a math and science competition held at Shallowater Middle School, as well as a State Competition held in San Antonio, Texas for those that qualified. Each week, students were encouraged to improve their personal best. The end goal was to place a team at the State Competition. Barely falling short of the goal, the Math team was ranked 8th overall, and the science placed 7th overall. It was a wonderful experience to see the students succeed. The tests that are dispensed to the students are incredibly advanced subjects. The competitions push students to become self-motivated and they also learn how to seek knowledge from themselves which benefits them tremendously academically as well as in life. Teachers and students have already begun to make plans for next year.
HANDS-ON LEARNING: SCALING THE CURRICULUM WALL
Kassidy Sherrill purchased Triple Beam Balances with the Hands-On Learning project for Shallowater Middle School. Students were able to use the beams to physical manipulate a device to measure and gather data. Actually being able to do the work with the beam allows students to better understand the process than he/she would if they merely saw it on paper. The balances are used on a regular basis in the science classroom. Their use aligns with TEKS and classroom learning expectations. They have proved to be a tremendous asset to instruction, so they will continue to be a regular fixture of science experiments and data collection lessons.
Stephanie Maxfield and Susan Nelson brought the iTeach program to Shallowater Middle School. The program implemented technology to help with skills and problem solving in the classroom. The program was definitely the students’ favorite form of learning. However, it was also used as a reward to play on for good behavior. The students would work hard just to get free time on the iPad. Not only was it a teaching tool, but it was also a huge motivator! The students responded well to the technology. Actually, in current society, most are more comfortable with technology than they are books, paper, and pencil. Ms. Maxfield and Ms. Nelson plan to find more ways to use the iPad in teaching as well as remediation. They hope to get another iPad so that 2-3 students can work on them at a time.
Staff: Sheila Redman
Campus: Middle School
Sheila Redman brought FASTT math software to the Shallowater Middle School. The program is a software that allows students to memorize math facts with speed and accuracy in order to build a stronger foundation in the subject. The program made students really excited to practice math skills. Some were even disappointed when they were not put in the first rotation to use it. Its ability to excite students about math is wonderful. The software can be used year after year for students who need the help. In order to continue the program students will rotate; those that finish it will be replaced by another who needs it. Because the program is customized for each student, some take longer than others to complete the program. This causes rotation to go a little slower than expected.
The program is able to provide a feedback to the teacher which allows for the modification of the program for each individual student. When a student completes the program, the teacher is able to very that, and the student is then rewarded a completion certificate.
WORLD MAP QUEST
Megan Horton brought “World Map Quest” to Shallowater Middle School The program allowed students to use an ELMO document reader to increase mapping skills and learn multiple geography objectives for world history. It also allowed students to determine locations of all continents and various landforms and countries throughout the world. The students loved to complete map projects using the ELMO document reader. They even brought items from home to create realistic models of landforms and specific regions. The program made the learning aspect fun and exciting. The ELMO will continue to be used to view various geographical maps. It will also be used to take notes, review geographical terms, and complete student map assignments.
SHALLOWATER’S GOT TALENT
Sherry Oliver designed the “Shallowater’s Got Talent” program for Shallowater Middle School’s music/choir department. All students in music and choir were given the opportunity to play the electronic keyboard that was purchased. These experiences were not limited to regular classroom instruction, but extended to Shallowater’s Got Talent. This allowed the students an opportunity to be creative and perform once per six weeks for an audience of peers. The Shallowater Education Foundation allowed the students to play on an in-tune, quality instrument. All students listened to the keyboard to lean pitch and to hear performances. Most, whether they were in the show or not, tired the key board. More than twice as many students tried out for the talent show as what had in the previous year. There were several students who were actually able to play the keyboard for the show, and for the end of the year talent show as well. The program will continue in music and choir by introducing Shallowater’s Got Talent to each new class of 5th graders, as well as allowing it to continue in the upper grades. The keyboard will also be used in regular classes to teach and learn TEKS across all strands of the music curriculum.