The mission of eStem Public Charter Schools is to prepare students to be college ready….career ready….world ready. Innovation is a key component to ensuring the success of our students. We believe that it is important to encourage teachers to seek out and implement teaching strategies that reach all types of learners.
The eStem Innovative Teaching Grant Program began in 2011. The purpose of the program is to provide support to teachers to try new techniques and activities to deliver curriculum. Grant funds are raised each year through a combination of private donations, sponsorships, and our annual STEM Soiree Fundraiser. Since its inception, eStem innovative grants have provided the opportunity for many of the unique educational experiences that set eStem apart from other public institutions.
This year’s recipients are no exception to the rich history of innovative projects generated by previous eStem teachers. For the 2017-2018 school year, six grants will be awarded to teachers across all three eStem campuses. We are very proud of these inspired educators and are fortunate to have the opportunity to support them and their students. We look forward to following each of these exciting projects throughout the year. Below is a brief overview of each of their projects. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter as we post pictures and stories from their classrooms.
Please help us in congratulating each recipient!
Leslie Manchester- ‘Classroom Breakout’ This project will allow students to take ownership of their learning by creating a student-facilitated environment. Breakout boxes are based on the concept of an escape room. Clues, riddles, and other puzzles are based on the content studied in class. Using breakout boxes in fourth grade math will allow students to engage with class material through critical thinking, collaboration, creativity, and communication. Breakout boxes will encourage both failure and perseverance, leading to further exploration of topics.
Gabriel Barnhart and Allyse Whitmore- ‘The Math Code’ This project addresses the relationship between mathematics, coding, and problem solving. Students will obtain knowledge of coding to create programs which aid in the mastery of mathematics skills and concepts. The project will address real-world coding applications from a local entrepreneur.
Denies Matlock, Maggie Kirchner, Emily Hester, Sarah Swartzwelder ‘Vocabulary for All: Flipped Word Work Instruction’'
This project addresses the diverse needs of the development of students spelling and vocabulary through a ‘Flipped Classroom’ format. This project will involve the entire English department. Teachers will be able to find out exactly which deficiencies students may have in their vocabulary development and target those specific needs.
Phillip Huddleston- ‘Comic Book Club’ This project will allow an arts and humanities fit for students. This project will show art’s illustration techniques, literature’s narrative studies, mathematics’ layouts, and economics’ theory of profits. The process of creating the comic will include narrative building based on Aristotle’s three acts, character creation based on individual taste, and page layout based on Scott McCloud’s graphic novel theories.
Elizabeth Whitley and Megan Miller- ‘Design, Build, Learn’ This project will provide hands on experience in mathematics standards that struggling students need to help comprehend higher level mathematics calculations. This project also utilizes all learning styles while incorporating STEM and community outreach into the classroom. Students will work in small groups to design, budget, and build two large model houses. Students in math classes will design while students in EAST lab will draw out the blueprints.
Cpt. Scott Pursley and Dr. Phillip Blake-CRASH!: Physics Rocks and Robots Rule’ Students will design, build, and program their own robot from the ground up using components such as resistors, LED’s, photo resistors, electric motors, and arduino microprocessors. They will program the robot using laptop computers and film this process for RoboRave competitions across the country.