Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Nebo Education Foundation awards school grants

r The Nebo Education Foundation awarded grants in June for numerous school project and study needs.

The foundation is composed of 20 volunteer board members who live in cities serviced by Nebo School District. Board members meet each month to review and award grant requests, consider fund-raising avenues and other items that advance the educational opportunities for Nebo School District students. Many of the donations received are for selected projects, yet a substantial amount is available for the greatest need.  Greatest need monies are considered for grants submitted by area schools.

“The Nebo Education Foundation couldn’t fund these grants without the tremendous support we receive from the Green Fever golf tournament, business partners, and individual donors. Thank you for the generosity of our community. The students in Nebo District have a more enhanced education than they would otherwise receive. We are grateful for all the good we see happening as a result of all those who support the Nebo Education Foundation,” said executive director Lana Hiskey.

Congratulations to the following teachers that continue to inspire the minds of students.

Springville High – Valerie Bodily

“The foundation grant will be used to purchase graphing calculators for our school’s math department. These graphing calculators will be used to help students become familiar with mathematical technology, including helping students learn basic programming skills. More specifically, graphing calculators will help students graph quadratic, cubic, exponential, square root, and cube root functions. Students will also learn how to use technology to perform tasks such as factorials, permutations, combinations, quadratic and exponential regressions, trigonometric functions, etc. (tasks that are too complicated to perform by hand). Our teachers and students are very excited and grateful for this opportunity! Thank you Nebo Education Foundation!” exclaimed Valerie Bodily, math teacher at Springville High.

Mapleton  Elementary – Chelsea Richards

“Each year, I teach 10 to 15 students in first through third grade. Students have individual strengths and areas of need, but my students all have one thing in common. They have a disability that makes it harder for them to function in the classroom and to learn in the typical way that their same age peers do. Thus, they require different teaching strategies and even programs to meet their academic, social and behavioral needs,” stated Chelsea Richards, special education teacher at Mapleton Elementary.

“Reading Milestones is a program designed to meet the reading needs of students with disabilities. It focuses on the five basic components of reading with a strong emphasis on comprehension, which a majority of my students lack. It allows students to read whole books at their level with several opportunities to practice high frequency words and various phonic skills. This program will be used in my classroom on a daily basis as I read one-on-one with students and then practice different comprehension skills with them. Purchasing this program is an important step in helping me more fully differentiate my instruction according to my students’ needs, for each student gets to read at their own level. In addition, several of my students are at least two grade levels behind where they should be in reading. I have seen this program work with other students in my school, and I think it has the potential to help my students make the gains that are needed in their reading.”

Salem Junior – Nikki Mendenhall

“I’m so grateful to the Nebo Education Foundation for helping the math team at Salem Junior by giving us this grant.  For the past two years, the Salem Junior math team has been going to professional development to help us become better math teachers, which will help our students become better critical thinkers and problem solvers. In that professional development, one of our focal pints is to have students make connections between different ideas and representations. One of those important representations is a graph. With these graphs, it will be much easier to help those students make connections between graphing and other ideas in math, therefore deepening their understanding. I appreciate your willingness to help us out with that. Thanks again!” exclaimed, Nikki Mendenhall, math teacher at Salem Junior High.

Mt. Loafer Elementary – Kyle Staheli

Kyle Staheli, third-grade teacher at Mt. Loafer Elementary, said, “The third-grade team is so excited and extremely grateful to receive a grant from Nebo Foundation.  We plan to use this money to purchase a Chromebook cart.  The third grade is also receiving matching funds to purchase Chromebooks needed for our students.  We plan to use the Chromebooks and cart in a variety of ways.  The cart allows us to keep the Chromebooks organized, protected, and charged.  It allows for the teachers to transport the cart from one room to another in an easy way.  This also allows for the third grade to use these at maximum potential throughout the day. The  Chromebooks will be used for researching, writing, keyboard practice, sage/test practice, educational math activities, MyOn, and many other parts of the learning process.”

Salem Hills High – Justin Bills

“Thank you to the Nebo Education Foundation for this generous grant. Having used an iPad in my teaching for the past five years, I’m aware of how effective the use of this type of technology is in the classroom.  In my classroom, I regularly use the iPad to sync with the projector and show musical examples and short instructional videos, as well as using a stylus to write musical prompts and symbols for the students to read, interpret, and learn,” stated Justin Bills, music teacher at Salem Hills High. “Having the iPad PRO with the 12.9″ inch screen will help me in the areas already explained, but also as a way for me to use electronic versions of the music literature, with the music at the tips of my fingers, rather than organized into a folder. Music publishers do not supply music teachers with digital copies of their music, it is all printed. At some point in the future, there’ll some a time when choir students use tablets with their music loaded onto it instead of individual choir folders with printed music. I will be piloting this type of set-up on the iPad PRO. The larger size is necessary for me to be able to read the choral parts and the piano parts together. On smaller iPad screens, it is virtually impossible to read the music. That is why the 12.9″ size is so important.

“Thank you Nebo Education Foundation for your support of teachers in the Nebo School District. I am inspired by your generosity and the generosity of those who donate to the foundation.”

Santaquin Elementary – Melanie Miller & Hannah Camit

Melanie Miller, fifth-grade teacher at Santaquin Elementary, said, “Thank you so much for this grant! These Chromebooks will not only benefit the students in my classroom but also all the fifth graders at our school as we rotate students among the teachers for both social studies and science. I am so excited to incorporate this technology in my classroom because technology is not only a great learning tool but also a great motivator! Thank you for the opportunity to challenge my students by incorporating more technology into their learning.”

Brockbank – Sherry Plaisted

Sherry Plaisted, Brockbank facilitator, said, “Thank you so much for your generous grant of $450 to buy books for our leveled library. We appreciate your continued support. We are constantly evaluating the need to replace worn out titles and add new titles that teachers request. The foundation has always been so generous in helping, Brockbank Elementary keep our leveled library in tiptop shape. Again, thank you so much!”

Maple Mountain High – Lori Zaremba

“I am so excited to have received the grant for external web cameras for my American Sign Language students. These cameras will allow students to use Chromebooks or the computers in the labs at MMHS  to film themselves signing a variety of things in ASL  and receive feedback on their skills. They can do self-evaluations, give feedback to peers, or submit the videos for me to check and grade,” stated Lori Zaremba, ASL teacher at Maple Mountain High. “I also plan to have each student create a video language portfolio so they can record their progress in ASL. Their videos can be saved directly to each students’s Google Drive account, making their videos easy to store, share and submit.

“ASL is a language of fluid movements, and the external web cameras will allow students to create high quality videos that are not choppy, pixilated, or distorted.   Thanks so much for helping my students to have access to the technology that enables them to record and improve their language skills.”

Salem Junior – Paul Wells

“The orchestra program in Salem has been rapidly expanding for the last several years. Enrollment at the high school has more than doubled and the junior high has gone from three classes to four. Last year the high school got perfect scores at the State Orchestra Festival and the junior high orchestra was one of only 14 schools selected to participate in the State Junior High Orchestra Festival. With all of this success and growth has come the need for additional instruments for students to use. Students have had to share instruments with students in other class periods, making it more difficult to practice. We are so grateful to the Nebo Education Foundation for helping us to purchase additional cellos to meet our growing needs. These instruments will last for many years and help students to continue to excel in music here in the Nebo School District. Thank you!” exclaimed Salem Junior orchestra teacher, Paul Wells.

Westside Elementary – Susan Crook & Lindsey Smith

Lindsey Smith, sixth-grade teacher, said, “We are so grateful to have received a grant from the Nebo Education Foundation enabling us to purchase an iPad for Mrs. Crook’s sixth-grade classroom, and math review bulletin boards for both Mrs. Crook’s and Miss Smith’s classes. Having an iPad in her classroom will allow Mrs. Crook the freedom to teach and display information for her students from anywhere in the classroom. It will also give her access to educational applications to inspire engagement and enhance student learning. The use of math review bulletin boards will keep math content fresh in student’s minds throughout the year, which will solidify understanding of concepts and will also facilitate connections with further learning. These resources are invaluable to us as teachers, and we truly appreciate your generosity in providing them for us.”

Riverview – Abby McLeod

“I am so grateful as well as my class to be able to receive this grant to buy new iPads for our classroom. This last year we had old iPads that were slow and didn’t work well. We are excited to use this grant money to purchase iPads that will really help each student strengthen their abilities in math, reading and writing. The iPads will be used to download apps and learning tools that students can use to work on different key learning concepts. Thank you Nebo Education Foundation!” exclaimed Abby McLeod, special education teacher at Riverview Elementary.

The Nebo Education Foundation functions through generous donations made by individuals and businesses. The Foundation helps enrich students’ education in Nebo School District. Anyone interested in the Nebo Education Foundation or who wish to make a donation for education is encouraged to contact Lana Hiskey by email, by phone 801-354-7400 or mail 350 S. Main St., Spanish Fork, UT 84660.

Chris Baird
Chris Baird
Chris is a family man with a beautiful wife and four kids. Three Girls, One Boy. He enjoys playing basketball, being outdoors, and the old normal.
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