Highlights of 2012-2013: Sycamore Canyon Elementary School

At Sycamore Canyon Elementary, 2nd grade teacher team Kate Taillon, Mary Catherine Shmina, Debbie Neshek, Christy Arnold, Lisa Anthony, and Suzie Cooper shared grant money to purchase supplies for activities bringing to life their study unit, “Pebbles, Sand, & Silt.”

The teachers reported:

“Our Geology/Earth Science Unit in November was culminated with the students as amateur geologists mining for REAL gems. This activity made such a difference, fueling EVERY child’s enthusiasm for Earth Science. This activity consisted of 5 classrooms with 23 students in each. This Grant was extremely helpful. This would never be a possibility to purchase such rich materials with our sorely depleted classroom funds. Thank you so very much!!!”

Posted in Classroom Projects, Elementary Schools, Language Arts, Science | Tagged

Highlights of 2012-2013: Ladera Elementary School

At the end of the school year,  Ladera 3rd grade students went on a field trip to the California Science Center and the Space Shuttle Endeavor, funded by a C4CC grant awarded to 3rd grade teacher Stephanie Lopez.

Ms. Lopez wrote:

“This grant allowed all students the chance to see the Endeavour and other exhibits at the Science Center free of charge. In preparation for this field trip students learned about the solar system, planets, the sun and moon, and previous shuttle trips. Approximately 62 students benefited from this grant. Students were able to see the size of the space shuttle, touch different pieces of the shuttle, such as the tires and jets, and watch footage of the its’ landing and transport to the Science Center. The students greatly enjoyed this field trip as it made subject matter come alive and provided real world application.”

Ms. Lopez’s class have a photo op in front of The Endeavor.

“Thank you so much for helping us visit the Science Center and giving my students the opportunity to see a piece of history.” - teacher Stephanie Lopez

Posted in Elementary Schools, Field trips, History/Social Science, Science | Tagged

Highlights of 2012-2013: The Gold Rush Comes to Maple & Aspen Elementary Schools

At Aspen Elementary, 4th grade teacher Lori Brown brought the El Camino Real Naturalists’ living history program, “Gold Rush Days” to her students.

Ms. Brown describes the activities:

“Program highlights included: Storytelling, guitar pickin and harmonica huffin’ by authentically costumed historical interpreters, a look at how the journey to California was made and the hardships travelers faced along the way, a comparison of the lives and fortunes of gold miners and merchants, a visit to the general store and gold miners’ camp, & hands-on activities demonstrating a typical gold miner’s day.”

More gold rush activities happened at Maple!  4th Grade teacher Patricia VanOmmeren was awarded a grant to bring the on-site filed”Gold Rush Day” field trip to her students as well.


Ms. VanOmmeren says:

“‘Gold Rush’ on site at Maple provided 64 students including our special education population with ‘hands on’ experiences relating to the gold rush times, culminating with panning for gold.”

Below, students pan for gold, hang clothes to dry, enjoy storytelling, and write letters using quill pens & ink.

Posted in Elementary Schools, Field trips, History/Social Science | Tagged ,

Highlights of 2012-2013: Westlake Elementary School

At Westlake Elementary, 3rd grade teacher Wendy Ridenour used her grant to purchase student clocks.

Ms. Ridenour explains why she wrote a grant for clocks:

“Our math materials include student clocks which are difficult for students to use.  The clock hands stick together, and children are frustrated as they are learning to tell time. Therefore, I wrote a grant for Judy Clocks.  The one “teacher-sized” clock which I purchased on my own over 20 years ago is still working well, so I knew that the company had a good product. Thankfully, my grant application was accepted, and I ordered class sets of student clocks/teacher clocks.  Such a helpful tool to have for teaching how to tell time on a face clock!”

“What a difference in our math lesson!  Telling time to the hour, half-hour, quarter-hour, five-minute, and minute has never been easier. “

“There were enough funds for me to order two extra class sets, so I will share them with other 2nd – 3rd grade teachers when the school year begins next year.  That means that approximately 160 students will benefit from Cash 4 Classrooms!” – teacher Wendy Ridenour


Also at Westlake Elementary, 4th grade teacher Tasha Spangler was awarded a grant to purchase math manipulatives and resources.

Ms. Spangler wrote to us:

“I was able to purchase: fraction cubes, dice-in-dice, math activity cards, a class set of compasses, and I plan to purchase a class set of clipboards. With these products my students completed an art math project, reviewed fraction concepts with the dice-in-dice, and were able to visually compare fractions. The clipboards will allow them to get out of their desks and work around the room, as well as outside. Thank you for helping me to enrich my classroom!”

Posted in Elementary Schools, Math | Tagged

Highlights of 2012-2013: Weathersfield Elementary School

At Weathersfield, kindergarten teachers Concie Bringas, Lynn Quick, & Bill McGovern shared grant money to bring Reading Awakens Young Scientists (RAYS) to their students.

The teachers report:

“RAYS [is] a program to introduce students to science and technology while reading children’s stories and providing hands on content standard science activities. The students were introduced to the scientific method, life cycle of mealworms, the five senses, and the use of scientific tools. This grant was very helpful because it provided us the opportunity to do hands on science and many of the children would possibly not have had the funds to afford this program.”

Posted in Classroom Projects, Elementary Schools, Reading/Literature, Science | Tagged