Please enjoy this recap of ‘Connecting STEM and LIteracy’, a BCEF grant inititated by Coffin Elementary teachers Libby Hunt and Erin Lemont.
Thanks to our Business Partners and individual donors, over $40,000 will be awarded to fund 22 different projects in amounts ranging from $200 to $5000 in Brunswick’s public schools in 2017. Grants include:
– A visit by award winning author and illustrator Chris Van Dusen (Down by the Sea with Mr. Magee) to every class at Coffin Elementary.
-Funds to bring two programs from the Children’s Museum & Theater of Maine to Harriet Beecher Stowe Elementary to present to all second graders. In the 2016-2017 year, Meet the Turtles and in the 2017-2018 year, the outreach program Life of Istar.
-An outdoor classroom on the grounds of BJHS.
-Funding to purchase robotics kits and materials in order to launch a new computer coding course at Brunswick High School for the 2017-2018 school year.
-Camping gear to promote service-learning and adventure-based programming at the Real School. Gear will also be shared with the BHS Outing Club and other schools as needed.
To see the full list, click here.
One of the most enjoyable times for BCEF board members is when we receive the grant applications each January from teachers and staff members of Brunswick’s public schools. Realizing that our educators are bursting with innovative and creative ways to enhance education of our students, and that BCEF is making these ideas a reality, is very rewarding. Perusing last year’s batch, I was particularly excited by one from BHS librarian Daurene Jerome titled Steam Room. Fantastic, a steam room at the high school. I could already picture basking in the hot, moist air, cleansing the pores and loosening up the old joints. I vote Yes! Reading on though, I learned that the STEAM in the title was short for science, technology, engineering, art and math. Daurene’s concept was to have BHS join the ‘maker movement’ by providing a space and materials where students can go to create. Actually, that’s a fantastic idea I thought, although a steam room would be nice. The new space, renamed the STREAM Lab by students, with the R added for research, had its grand opening in November. It’s filled with cool materials like Snap Circuit electronics, coding stations, makey makey invention kits, virtual reality goggles and a variety of craft supplies. Since opening, students have been busy creating- writing code for Sphero robots, building complex Lego architecture, making holiday cards and generating virtual reality experiences to view through the vr googles. The grant is one of 44 that BCEF has given in its first two years of existence. We are currently in the midst of our annual campaign, which ends on Dec 31, to raise funds for the next round of grants. If you haven’t donated yet this year, have never donated, please visit our donate page.