2016-2017 Funded Grants

The Foundation’s Excel Grant program was created to support classroom innovation throughout Highline Public Schools and to provide teachers resources they need to help students be successful. Some of the Excel Grants were given out via the Foundation’s “Prize Patrol” — surprise visits by Foundation Trustees to staff meetings, classrooms and assemblies during which the checks were presented to excited and deserving district staff. Photos can be found on the Foundation’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/HighlineSchoolsFoundation)

2016-2015 Funded Grants

Academy of Citizenship & Empowerment (ACE)
ACE Experiences Gravitational Waves!
Rupika Madhavan, Physics and Geometry Teacher
Physics is an immensely wonderful subject that is often considered to be difficult and math-intensive; however, it is also immensely beautiful and awe-inspiring. LIGO (Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory) is the observatory in Hanford, WA that discovered the existence of gravitational waves created by two black holes colliding. Students will get to experience the beauty of physics firsthand and see what real physicists do on this exciting field trip!

Arts & Academics Academy (AAA)
All Instruments Matter — How piccolos, oboes, and bassoons can make our band great again
Matthew Duhrkoop, Instrumental and Vocal Music Teacher
This project supports the developing band program at the Arts and Academics Academy, Health and Human Sciences High School, and Technology Engineering and Communications High School by purchasing needed instruments and accessories. Students will now have the opportunity to learn piccolo, oboe, and bassoon; instruments which are more expensive, unique, and sometimes difficult to master. Having these instrument performers in the band will also improve the overall sound and quality of the ensemble.

All Instruments Matter

All Instruments Matter: Adding the instruments and accessories has increased student curiosity within the band. When the instruments arrived, students had questions and explored by listening to and viewing performances where oboes and bassoons were featured. Two of the students also have taken pride in our band’s ownership of the new piccolo and mallets, and have practiced individually to become successful. We have also seen how the addition of the bassoon and oboe reeds can affect recruitment as students are excited about new opportunities.

Beverly Park Elementary
LEGO WeDo Robotic’s Kits to support Problem-Based Investigations
Charles Jamieson, 4th Grade Teacher
LEGO WeDo kits help students of all ages engage with science through a recognizable toy, the LEGO brick. Math, writing, and reading are integrated into these problem-based lessons as students K-6 learn how to complete a task using a set of pieces. Students are encouraged to be innovative and most importantly work together as a team. Tasks utilize high-level skills like computer coding and engineering.

Tech Bridge Loves STEM
Ruth Gardner, Teacher
Tech Bridge Students at Beverly Park Elementary will travel to HPS STEM focused Raisbeck Aviation High School. Upon their arrival the students will be immersed in the STEM culture of the school by receiving a tour and introduction to the school goals and learning about FIRST robotics program. All of the girls will see how a part is manufactured from start to finish and get hands on experience using basic shop tools.

Tech Bridge Loves STEM

Tech Bridge Loves STEM: Twenty 5th and 6th grade girls that are part of the Tech Bridge Program at Beverly Park visited Raisbeck Aviation High School. The girls toured the school and were given the opportunity to work in the shop using tools to complete their own key fob with the help of the girls on the Skunk Works Robotic team.

Big Picture Schools
Big Picture Junior Year East Side College Hop-portunity
Steven Uydess, 301 (Junior) Advisor
Big Picture High School’s 301s (11th graders) are going on an overnight college visit to Eastern Washington University, Washington State University and Central Washington University. Students will take campus tours, meet with admissions officers, sit-in on a college class and meet with current student leaders. It is a transformative experience, where our students will have the opportunity (many for the first time) to see college life firsthand and begin to imagine themselves as college students.

Cascade Middle School
Bringing WITS to Cascade
Emily Harris, Language Arts Teacher
Writers in the Schools will provide 8th grade students with the opportunity to work with a professional writer in their classroom to create poetry that expresses who they are and what they think. They will learn to look at themselves as writers in and out of the classroom. This experience will increase their developing writing abilities as well as improve their overall confidence.

Lower Level Reading for English Language Learners
Dawn Lindgren, Librarian
Cascade Library is dedicated to serving all our students. This project targets our beginning and intermediate English Language Learners. These students need lower-level materials written at a level that will foster their language acquisition. Funds from this project will be used to purchase contemporary books that will engage our students in improving their reading of the English language.

Music Stands for Upstanding Musicians!
Sarah Butler, Music Teacher
In a music class, our music stands serve as our desks, and the music stands at Cascade Middle School are in abysmal shape. More than one-third of our current music stands are broken beyond repair. Our numbers in the music program are growing annually, and we simply do not have enough functioning music stands to support all of our hard-working students. New music stands will give a sense of pride in the students in the fine equipment we have that helps us to produce fine music.

Cedarhurst Elementary
Kindergarten is Coming Soon … and we need to get ready!
Ashley Andrews, Occupational Therapist–Preschool
We are a group of adorable and energetic preschoolers with a variety of special needs. We love to learn and we love to take on new challenges. Some of the skills we are working on learning include using spoons and forks to feed ourselves, asking for things we need, cleaning up after ourselves, dressing ourselves, staying safely with the group and taking care of our belongings. We will be starting Kindergarten soon and we are asking for your help to get ready!

Portable Garden
Roseanne Esposito, Teacher
A Portable Garden–Well actually not a movable one, but a garden in front of the 6th grade portables! We believe Waskowitz is an important milestone for 6th grade, but that it should not be an isolated week in the school year. We will study environmental issues throughout the year at our school site by having our own container garden.

Chinook Middle School
Readers Need Heroes!
Kimberly Meschter, Teacher Librarian
Readers need heroes and this projects seeks to provide literary heroes. Through the acquisition of materials requested by students, we are trying to provide literary heroes for our readers to help them remain invested in their reading.

Readers Need Heroes

Students have particularly connected with the Ms. Marvel series (a young adult, Muslim superhero who wears a hijab!) and the Miles Morales Spiderman (he’s a superhero who’s Hispanic!) series. That being said, they love all of these books. The fantasy books with Hispanic characters and even the Teen Titans series have been wildly popular. They love being able to see themselves in books with characters who look like them. These books have been continually checked out since they arrived, with many books on hold as students eagerly await being next to read them.

CHOICE Academy
Equipment for Increasing Activity During School
Cherie Clymer, Math/Health/P.E. teacher
This grant will increase opportunities for students to be active during the school day at CHOICE academy through the use of peddlers and pedometers during academic classes, and by purchasing additional P.E. equipment and nets for use both before, during, and after school.

Des Moines Elementary
Bibliotherapy Library: Helping Students & Families, One Book at a Time
Lisa Reasner, School Counselor
Our student experience many major life change and traumatic events that can be a barrier to engaging in learning. A Bibliotherapy Library can be an accessible resource for students and families to help them engage in the counseling process and help them develop resilience characteristics and personal strengths to deal with personal adversity and our changing world. When students receive social-emotional support and have the tools to help with their personal lives, the skills can translate to academic life as well, thereby fostering academic growth and success.

Camp Waskowitz Field Trip
Meghan Burke, 4th Grade Teacher
Every year the 4th grade students at Des Moines Elementary attend a field trip at Camp Waskowitz for one day. The curriculum in 4th grade focuses on Washington State History and this field trip provides students with an opportunity to learn more about our state’s history in an environment that is both interesting and engaging. Students will participate in activities that will enrich their understanding of topics learned in class during our Living History day at Camp Waskowitz.

Graduate Highline
Gabriel Munoz, 6th grade teacher
Every year my teaching partner and I encourage our 6th grade students to begin exploring the idea of attending college. We do this by talking to them about the types of colleges available to them, and have them pick a school to research. This includes calling the campus and researching online to create a display board that highlights admission requirements, campus life, programs they are known for, mascots, school colors, etc. It’s a fun learning process that our students really enjoy. We would like to take it further by having the pennants of many different colleges displayed throughout our rooms and hallway.

Of Cedar and Salmon Full Day Program
Meghan Burke, 4th Grade Teacher
Of Cedar and Salmon is a multimedia, multicultural, hands on program designed to maximize student participation and involvement with the native art and cultures of the Pacific Northwest during a full day program at school. In the evening, students’ families will be invited to a performance during which students will participate in song and dance learned during the day’s presentation. This program promotes community between home and school, which is something as a fourth-grade team we have been working diligently to foster throughout the school year.

Evergreen Campus
Manga Madness @ the Library
Joanne Glasgow, Teacher Librarian
Manga (or graphic novels) are a great way to reach reluctant readers, emergent English readers & also engage sophisticated readers who want a little more. As we all know, there are so many forms of entertainment available to young people today. But we also know that getting young people hooked on reading in any form is priceless; studies show strong connections between reading for pleasure & academic success. So how do we get these busy, modern teens into the library, & how to we get them to keep coming back? Graphic novels seem to be the answer.

Manga Madness @ the Library

Manga Madness @ the Library: With the Excel grant funds, I was able to increasing the graphic novel section of the library by 76 books. Circulation of these titles has skyrocketed and the additions has made many students very happy and excited about reading for pure pleasure. In addition, I have 2-3 teachers who have extended their reading requirements in class to include graphic novels because we now have the variety and sheer numbers that all this to be a viable option.

Global Connections High School
Aids for Qualitative Modeling and Quantitative Calculations
Joseph Thomas, Science teacher
The science department at Global Connections wishes to improve student engagement and independence. We hope to make students the leaders of their own learning by having them model scientific processes to each other, and engage in a collaborative learning process. Within this process, we hope to show students how mathematics can supplement the sciences and give them the necessary resources to carry out quantitative analyses of scientific concepts.

Espress “O” to Graduate! Highline
Alana Vinther, Marketing Teacher/DECA Advisor
We seek to improve student graduation rate, build student CTE skills and provide a business service to the students and staff of Global Connections High School by replacing our out-of-date espresso machine in our student-run espresso stand. Replacing the machine will create opportunities for more students to be involved in this CTE class that motivates students to strive towards graduation as they connect what they are learning in class to a future career path.

Math for Independence and Understanding
Linda Lambert, ILC Special Education Teacher
We are requesting a grant from the Highline Schools Foundation to purchase 8 TI-84 Plus Calculators to be used by students in a support math class at Global Connections High School. The calculators will allow the students more accessibility and make the class more inclusive. It is our hope that with these calculators, the students will find great success and fulfill their graduation requirements.

Math for Independence and Understanding

As an educator, it is painful to watch students unable to go as far as they can due to a lack of resources in a classroom. The grant to purchase the TI-84 Plus calculators has allowed the students to be more successful and have more access in their math class than they previously had. Because the students now have daily access to these calculators, they are no longer in danger of falling behind and have every opportunity to be reach their full potential.

Gregory Heights Elementary
Preschoolers Move with Math!
Sharmaine Guyll, Early Childhood Special Education Teacher
This project will provide much-needed materials for math and movement activities for preschoolers with and without disabilities at Gregory Heights Elementary School. These materials will allow for math to be integrated into movement activities and movement to be integrated into math activities so that all children can participate and be motivated to enhance their skills in these areas.

Robots in Action
Denise Lund, 6th Grade Teacher
The Dot and Dash robots along with Apple TV systems, allow sixth graders to put their computer coding skills into a tangible reality. How can I clearly communicate to the robot what I want to happen? This question is answered through constant revision and feedback when coding. Peers help each other become persistent problem solvers, and they see clear success when their robot moves as they wished.

Unleashing the Power of Art
Brenda Martin, Second Grade Teacher
“Unleashing the Power of Art” is a project that integrates the visual arts into all core subjects. With a variety of quality art media, students can create beautiful pieces of art that creatively demonstrate and deepen understanding of academic and art standards.

Unleashing the Power of Art

The students in my second grade class are so thrilled each time I set out new art supplies for us. It is exciting to see them anticipate the affect of each new supply on their art work. One project that we recently worked on integrated science, writing, reading, and art. We had been learning about the water cycle and how water vapor condensates to make clouds which eventually results in precipitation. We watched a slow motion video clip of rain dropping into a puddle (and observed outside in the rain), followed by a water-color crayon resist of the rain in puddles. The quality of the paint and the water-color paper made their art expression come alive as they saw their color choices blending together and the splash ringlets look so real. Afterwards, we read Rain Talk by Mary Serfozo and considered language choices used to represent the sounds rain makes. The children then studied their own rain art and chose words to write that depicted their rain’s sounds. All of these parts to this project connected directly to Common Core Standards for second grade. The children are delighted to have this project on display in our hallway and love to view and read their classmates’ interpretation of the rain. This project and others like it have helped my students practice and show the standards in a deep and connected way that they wouldn’t have without receiving this grant.

Hazel Valley Elementary
4th Grade Living History at Waskowitz Outdoor School
Jairo Garcia, Teacher
This grant was able to provide all of the 4th Grade Students from Hazel Valley Elementary financial support in attending a field trip about Washington State History at Camp Waskowitz. It provides students rich hands on experience where they learn about Native Americans, Homestead Logging, Mining and Railroads. Students are able to build railroads, wash clothes by hand, carve out a canoe and mine for gold. This field trip is one of the highlights of the 4th grade school year.

Math Materials Needed for First Grade Mathematicians
Tania Zaballa, First Grade Teacher
Our goal as a first grade team is to better differentiate our math instruction by meeting students where they are at, and by challenging them within their zone of proximal development. We have adopted a guided math model, and in order for this math model to work, we need more math materials for students to work with. The materials we are asking for will enhance the activities students work on during the game/activity station, and will enhance the work we do with them during the teacher station.

Reading is the Reward!
Elizabeth Winston, Support Specialist
At Hazel Valley, we work to frequently recognize students who are making respectful choices. One way we would like to do this is by adding a reading prize time for students in our 5th grade classes. This Excel Grant would allow us to purchase a small collection of high-interest books that were selected with these particular students’ interests and strengths in mind. Our 5th graders love football, basketball, and being active! In addition to being a reinforcement for positive choices, reading engaging books will help build a love of reading in our school.

Reading is the Reward

Here’s just one student’s story that demonstrates how building this library of engaging books had a positive impact: One of my students had been struggling to be his best self when lining up for the bus at the end of the day. He made a plan to solve the problem that included checking in with an adult before heading to the bus. While making this plan, he noticed the library of Amazing Athletes books that I purchased with the Highline Schools Foundation grant. He suddenly got a big smile on his face and asked if reading these books could be a part of this end-of-day plan. He planned to end each school day by quietly reading one story and getting calm before heading home. These books helped turn a problem into an opportunity!!: Here’s just one student’s story that demonstrates how building this library of engaging books had a positive impact: One of my students had been struggling to be his best self when lining up for the bus at the end of the day. He made a plan to solve the problem that included checking in with an adult before heading to the bus. While making this plan, he noticed the library of Amazing Athletes books that I purchased with the Highline Schools Foundation grant. He suddenly got a big smile on his face and asked if reading these books could be a part of this end-of-day plan. He planned to end each school day by quietly reading one story and getting calm before heading home. These books helped turn a problem into an opportunity!!

The Butterfly Scientists of 2nd Grade!
Kristina Nicchi, 2nd Grade Teacher
We are excited to prepare our students for college and career in the 21st century by giving them learning experiences that develop their inquisitiveness, collaboration, and critical thinking skills. We will give students the opportunities to develop these essential skills through the observation of the butterfly life cycle in our classroom and the observation of butterflies in their natural habitat at the Pacific Science Center.

The Butterfly Scientists of 2nd Grade

This grant made a difference in our classes by getting students excited about learning. Giving them butterfly eggs and taking them to the butterfly house at the Science Center provides them with a hands on, real world science experience that builds on their natural curiosity and wonder about how the world works. Students tracked the growth of their butterflies in fascination, taking detailed notes in their science journals, and several students went home or to the library to research butterflies in order to add new insights to our growing class knowledge. Discussions were rich and meaningful with so many first-hand experiences from which to draw. This grant helped our students see themselves as scientists, and see science as something that they love!

Highline High School
AP World History Scholars Achievement Fund
David Ruby, AP World History Teacher
Project to build AP World History program and test readiness at Highline High School. By deploying Chromebooks in a tech-enabled 1:1 environment and offering all students a study guide in addition to the district textbook, students will have the greatest possible edge to score at their full potential on the rigorous AP World History Exam. A score of 3 or higher can potentially earn a student college credit, saving money for the student while building his or her college readiness long before matriculation in a post-secondary setting.

Dissection Materials and Tools
Sara Ullmer, science teacher/science department head
Students will be able to experience and explore biology in a new way with new dissection tools and specimens to learn about living systems that are similar and different to ours. This will motivate many of them to engage in science classes and explore further career paths.

Rollercoaster Design Project
Andrea Kunkle, Science Teacher
Our freshman students will be designing and creating a rollercoaster from paper and tape to demonstrate various physics concepts. They will be analyzing the movement of the marble throughout the coaster and applying concepts they learn throughout the project to the rollercoaster design and implementation.

Taproot Theatre “CyberZoo” Anti-Bullying program
Owen Sallee, School Counselor
All Highline High School students will attend a performance of Taproot Theatre’s play “Cyber Zoo: It’s Nothing Personal,” addressing issues of social media and cyberbullying. Follow-up discussions will strengthen students’ ability to use social media responsibly and respond appropriately to bullying.

Hilltop Elementary
A Book a Day Makes the Firsties Say Yay!
Taylor Newton, First Grade Teacher
First grade is one of the most critical years for reading growth in all of elementary school. When students bring home a book at their independent reading level every night, they get the extra practice they need to gain fluency and strengthen foundational reading skills. As a first grade team, we want to send home a daily book in the current language of instruction so that all students have opportunities to strengthen their reading in both English and Spanish. Having access to Spanish books they can read on their own will give our students ownership of their language learning.

Northwest Barn Owls
Terre Salzer, Librarian
Four sixth grade classes learned about the Barn Owl, its’ habitat and the food chain, by dissecting an owl pellet (the regurgitated material that owls don’t digest). I have a stuffed Barn Owl that I will use to introduce the students to the owl, and discover the specific adaptations that they have. Dissecting the pellets takes the lesson one step further, allowing them to discover what the owl ate, by reconstructing the skeleton from fragments found in the pellet.

The ART of Community
Mellissa Frangias, 6th grade DL teacher
6th Grade students will create works of art exploring identity on purchased 24” x 24” blank puzzle pieces which are then assembled and displayed at the school during Hilltop’s Art Night. Puzzle pieces will then be shipped to join thousands of other puzzle pieces in a Puzzle Art Installation & Collaborative Project installation in New York City by artist Tim Kelly.

Learning Centers
Spanish Library
Kristen Garcia, Paraeducator
The Learning Center will host a Spanish-language library in order to support bilingual and advanced Spanish-language learners in developing literacy in Spanish. It will feature high school level literary classics that have been translated into Spanish, such as The Giver and To Kill a Mockingbird, as well as celebrated classics of Spanish literature by authors such as Gabriel García Márquez and Jorge Luis Borges.

Madrona Elementary
Building Strong Connections
Sandra Hunt, ELL/DL Facilitator
In partnership with the International Rescue Committee, this grant will allow us to take advantage of the new Angle Lake Light Rail Station to transport newly arrived refugee students and their parents on at least one educational field trip into Seattle. Over the course of 5 months, we will conduct 4 school day field trips with approximately 15 students and 15 chaperones per trip. Students and their families will also be invited on a Saturday trip to the Museum of Flight. Each newcomer refugee student will participate in at least one trip and create a report that reinforces language learning.

Living History at Camp Waskowitz
Alexandria Skagen, 4th grade teacher
We are asking for 2,500.00 dollars to sponsor 100 4th grade students at Madrona Elementary to attend the Living History field trip at Camp Waskowitz.

Madrona’s Theater of the Future
Kathy Allen, Family Liaison
Madrona Elementary is requesting funding to help us develop the next generation of artists including painters, fashion designers and architects through support of our stagecraft and costume design. This grant will enable us to support our students as artistic leaders planning and building sets, costumes and more for our school musical that will be performed in March 2017. From this project, students will gain arts skills and knowledge that align with the Washington State Arts standards as well as a life-long love of the arts.

Marvista Elementary
Heroes Among and Within Us
Stacie Latimer, Third Grade Teacher
Heroes Among and Within Us will be an exploration for 5th and 6th grade girls of women in history in the midst of incredible change: Ruby Bridges and Ji-li Jiang. These serve as a launching point for discussions about heroes: how we can be changed in knowing of them, be inspired by them, and be connected because of them. The book studies will culminate in an afternoon symposium featuring invited ‘heroic’ women for a panel discussion.

Let’s Be Tech Savvy! Provide students who struggle with writing an external keyboard to use with an iPad to help improve their quantity and quality of their writing
Kathleen O’Grady-Graham, Occupational Therapist
Provide students who struggle with writing an external keyboard to use with an iPad to help improve their quantity and quality of their writing.

Let's Be Tech Savvy

Let’s Be Tech Savvy: One student was so successful with her writing using the iPad and keyboard that she no longer needs to go down to the resource room for writing support. Another student which was producing nothing with his on demand writing handwriting it is now coming up with a few sentences on the iPad. As teachers find out about the advantages of using Word with an iPad I am getting more and more requests.

McMicken Heights Elementary
Engaging Social Studies Curriculum for Students with Emotional/Behavioral Disabilities
Spencer Flanagan, Intermediate EBC Teacher
I am asking for help raising funds to purchase a few different Story Path Social Studies curriculum units to help my students with Emotional/Behavioral Disabilities in my self-contained classroom access important historical events in our country’s history in an engaging, interactive way. I also hope to better their understanding of geography. I have had a lot of success using Story Path over the past several years, and am hoping to be able to purchase a few new units this year so the students I have for multiple years can experience new units and learn new, important, historical information.

Engaging Social Studies Curriculum

One of the new units I was able to purchase was about immigration into the United States between 1880-1920. My students have been really engaged as they’ve learned about what life was like outside of America during that time and why people wanted to come to America. Students have worked together to research and learn about what life was like in 4 different countries in Europe that people emigrated from, they created a character from one of those countries, they built the steamship that their character would travel on, created a passport for their character, presented information about their character in front of the class, and had to problem solve through various problems that have arisen that their character had to work through. It’s been awesome to see how engaged they have been as they’ve learned what life was like back then and how terrible some of the conditions were. I think some of my students have also been able to make connections to why people still today want to come to America and still see America as the Land of Opportunity.

Multicultural Dolls
Dawn Elwell, Kindergarten Teacher
During choice time, the majority of the students in my classroom choose to play with dolls and this provides an enriching opportunity for them to practice social emotional skills including sharing, empathy and problem solving. While the majority of my students represent minority ethnicities both of the dolls in our classroom are Caucasian and they are old, dirty and falling apart. I would like to have multicultural dolls in my classroom so that students will be able to see a broader representation of ethnicities represented in their play.

Multicultural Dolls

My students have loved the dolls from the day we opened up the box. They commented on how the dolls looked like them and it sparked many conversations about different countries and cultures. One young girl whose family is from India was so excited when she saw a doll that looked like her that she exclaimed, “India! That doll is from India!” Students enjoy having dolls that represent their ethnicities and being able to dress them up in clothes from different countries. The dolls have helped create a culture in our classroom where our differences are accepted and celebrated.

Our Brains Keep Popping
Jennifer Walsh, Third Grade Teacher
Our Brains Need to Keep Popping is a project involving my students favorite blended tech resources, Brainpop. It is a short inquiry based cartoon video which is aligned to standards, and the common topics we teach in Reading/Writing, Math, Science, Social Studies, Fine Arts, and Health. The two lovable characters help students learn about topics in a relatable way by asking and answering questions, and introducing new vocabulary. Students even ask to take the brief quiz at the end.

Sharing Our Success!
Dawn Elwell, Kindergarten Teacher
In kindergarten, students work hard to master basic academic skills which are essential to their future academic success. This project involves creating buttons that students will wear for the day at school when they have reached their goals. The buttons will say, “I know all of my letters!” and “I know my letter sounds!” The project will be publicized throughout the school and older students and staff who see students wearing the buttons will be encouraged to congratulate the kindergarteners on their success.

Midway Elementary
Help Special Education Students Safely Learn!
Stephen Dziadosz, Primary (k-3) Special Education ILC Teacher
It is very challenging to instruct students who have a high level of need and low-level of attention when there is a lot of movement and noise occurring in the background. Having partitions that will cut off a lot of the visual and auditory distractions will be such a blessing for my students. The team is trying our best to help keep our students in their academic area and engaged in learning but often my students need physical modifications to their environment to be successful, and 30″H x 6’L Angeles® BaseLine® Sound Sponge® Quiet Dividers® would be a huge help for them!

Mount Rainier High School
Taking the Sting Out of Learning to Read
Lisa Carlson, Teacher-Librarian
What we have currently available for struggling, emerging and reluctant readers can only be described as “baby books” in that they focus on themes and styles predominant in elementary materials. Saddleback Publishers offer a huge selection of materials from beginning level readers through intermediate readers—all with themes, content and covers (mustn’t forget the covers) that are attractive to teens readers. My hope is to increase the number of books checked out by ELL, Special Ed and struggling/reluctant readers with age-appropriate books that offer more interest and less stigma.

Mount View Elementary
We Love Reading en Espanol!
Trina Samson, Library Media Specialist
Our students are learning in both English and Spanish. We have a lot of great books in English for them, but need more in Spanish! This grant will allow high quality books in Spanish at all levels that kids will love to read.

We’re Cooking Up Powerful Social Skills!
Ashley Andrews, Occupational Therapist
Cooking Club members are elementary scholars of all ages who are working together to develop teamwork, problem-solving skills, coping skills, and friendships. These are students who benefit from extra support in these areas for a variety of reasons: a stressful family situation, a history of trauma, an identified social-emotional disability, and more. The Cooking Club offers members a highly motivating, yet structured, way to build pro-social skills as a team. We are asking for your help to purchase cooking and preparation tools and equipment, as well as a weekly budget of $10 for food.

New Start High School
Building Background Knowledge for English-Language Learners
Brandie Hicks, Inclusive Education
By helping students make connections between their first language knowledge and English we are playing an important role in ELLs’ success. By taking that further and specializing in the areas of history we are also contributing to major graduation requirements and preparing all students for the opportunity of a college career.

New Start Sails
Kelsie Maney, Science Teacher
New Start Sails will provide at risk youth a chance to participate in a New Start tradition of sailing aboard the S.S. Adventuress. This program engages students in relevant science education, self-reflection and growth in their mindset towards community and sustainability.

Providing a High Caliber Civics Education to All Students
Brandie Hicks, Inclusive Education
By the class of 2018 all students will require Civics credits in order to graduate. By aligning our teaching and materials to meet the needs of General Education, Inclusive Education and English language learning students alike, we are being proactive and providing the opportunity for our students to gain their civics credits as early as freshman year. This is how we Graduate Highline!

Visions of Hope
Tamara Nedell, Language Arts Teacher
Using the written model in the novel titled The Soloist, by Steve Lopez, students will be given the opportunity to select from and focus on their own personal life experiences. They will write a personal narrative which is a Vision of HOPE for their future.

North Hill Elementary
A Real Author Is Coming to School!
Sherry Edwards, Classroom Teacher, 5th Grade Reading
Author Jim Whiting will give a presentation to each of my three Reading classes–demonstrating that true stories can be just as fascinating as their fiction counterparts, showing how books are printed, and explaining how rough drafts can be cleverly edited in the Writing process. In addition, he gathers student writers during a working lunch who have previously submitted their work to him to give feedback about the strengths of their writing.

A Real Author is Coming to School

Aloha! Music Making for a Lifetime with Ukulele’s
Colleen Thomas-Reitsma, General Music
Inspiring our upper elementary musicians to begin accompanying themselves on Ukulele’s is setting them up for a lifetime of music making. We want each student to hold the instrument and practice their chords so that someday they will be able to accompany themselves or friends as they sing favorite songs and bring their communities together with music. The Highline Schools Foundation grant has made life long music making a possibility for our North Hill students.

Equitable Technology
Tami Skeen, Librarian
This grant will allow all of the students access to technology in the library with the goal of preparing the North Hill students for global and digital citizenship.

Of Cedar and Salmon
Carol DeSilva, Teacher
“Of Cedar and Salmon” has become a beloved 3rd grade experience at North Hill. Ronn Wilson, the presenter, has provided the best cultural experiences possible for our kids! He is of the Kwaguilth People of the Northwest Coast. His message is based on “reverence, respect, and remembering”. He melds the people of the past, and the environment they lived in, to our current role in the world. His lessons have had a lasting effect on our students.

Of Cedar and Salmon

It has given our new energy to our Native American units that we are studying in anticipation to Ronn Wilson’s arrival. Many students have shared that they are Native Americans and are showing pride in knowing about some of the things we have talked about. One boy found out that his aunt is a cousin to Sacagawea! His father is carver so we invited him to tell his stories as well. It has been a way to open the door for families that feel they don’t have much to share or give to our school.

Pacific Middle School
“Come on Let’s Dance” with Ozobot 2.0 and Cozmo
Sandy Gady, Design and Engineering Teacher
Technology is the future of our students. Ozobot 2.0 and Cozmo, the interactive robot with a very distinct personality will engage our students with the next level of programming in a rich and meaningful way. Any engagement with robots and programming levels the playing field and provides opportunities for success for all students.

Building a Positive School Culture
Loren Liwanag, Success Dean
The “Building a Positive School Culture” project is a school wide PBIS effort to help increase positive behavior school-wide.The funding will be used to provide incentives and supports for students making positive decisions throughout the school year. Students earn points for demonstrating desired behaviors and can purchase items at the school store using these points. Our goal is to build a positive, strong and long-lasting school culture.

Shoe Library
Philip Wallen, Teacher Fitness/Leadership/Coach
I want to create a shoe/cleat check out or library for students who do not have cleats. This would be used in the sports football, soccer and fastpitch. I believe many more students would come out for these sports and attendance would also increase.

Shoe Library

We created a shoe library with cleats in every size with multiple shoes in common sizes. Students will be able to check them out for football, soccer, and softball. Then return them once the season is over. When the shoes arrived and I was sorting them, many kids were asking what they were for. A lot of kids were talking about not having cleats during the softball season and how this would have really helped. The shoe library will make a huge difference for the kids who can’t afford cleats for sports at our school

Parkside Elementary
Biography Living Museum
Jeanette Yee, Grade 4 Teacher
Students will select and read several biographies of historical or current figures that had an impact on our world. Students will study biographies by reading several biographies during reading workshop, participate in a biography book club and in “The Living Museum”. On the day of The Living Museum, each student wears a simple costume, use artifacts and students will role play the historic person using “first person” narration. They will recount important dates in his/her life, his/her contributions to the world, and any other historic information about the person’s life.

iPads for Our 2028 Grads
Kathy Patricelli, First Grade Teacher
My project is to purchase 5 iPads and 5 protective cases for my first grade classroom. The iPads will be a tool in my classroom which will help me provide differentiated instruction and student achievement. This technology will allow students to practice skills at individual levels, meet weekly goals and expectations while nurturing a desire to learn. Our goal as a district is that every student is tech-savvy by 2026.

Puget Sound Skills Center
HOSA State, Here We Come!!
Jane Judd, Nursing Assistant Certified Instructor
Students in the Nursing Assistant program will be headed to Spokane for the HOSA conference and competition this year, thanks to the Highline Schools Foundation! The knowledge they will gain in leadership, diversity, goal setting, career building, confidence, power and strength is beyond words. I believe this trip will build lasting memories as they utilize their employable skills of the 21st Century learning in the high school and beyond.

Raisbeck Aviation High School
The Gadget Playground – Becoming Technology Literate by Tinkering
Nikhil Joshi, Math and Science Teacher
The Gadget Playground is a collection of diverse electronic and mechanical hardware and software components that will allow students to experiment, play, and prototype their project ideas. The playground allows students to learn through tinkering and develop their project ideas for formal design, development, and testing.

Seahurst Elementary
“I Don’t Know How to Say it in English”
Amanda Lattin, ELL Facilitator
This project will provide Kindle Tablets and headsets for ELL level 1 students to use during their writing block to increase their proficiency in English. The project will also provide picture dictionaries in each 2nd-6th grade classrooms so that students can build their vocabulary and take on ownership of their learning, rather than ask a teacher “What’s that word?”.

“We Do” STEM with Legos
Wendy Colmus, 5th Grade Teacher
Thanks to the generosity of the Highline Schools Foundation, students at Seahurst Elementary are able to benefit from the LEGO Education WeDo 2.0 curriculum kit which provides the students with exposure and access to interactive, hands-on STEM and coding educational materials. In order to be confident and competitive in today’s world, students need earlier STEM education opportunities that this grant will now be able to provide to our students which will better increase their chances to be successful in middle school, high school, college and the competitive world beyond.

We Do STEM with Legos

This grant has made a huge difference in my class. Students are more motivated to come to school and daily attendance by certain students has increased. Students have risen to the high expectations that I have placed on them to problem solve collaboratively with their partners. They also exceeded my expectations of assisting other partnerships when they are having difficulties. Students are highly engaged in the activities and want us to work on Legos everyday!

Shorewood Elementary
Hear Ye! Hear Ye!
Gary Ballou, Music Specialist
Hear Ye! Hear Ye! Have you ever sat in a meeting and you thought to yourself, “I can’t hear a word he or she is saying?” This project seeks to remedy that situation. No more crackling, snapping sound systems! No more tripping over microphone cords! At Shorewood Elementary, step into the 21st Century with a cordless portable sound system that everyone can use!

Hear Ye Hear Ye

The sound system in the Multipurpose Room was so bad (“snap-crackle-pop”) that it was, in reality, barely usable. One after-school program (Club de Lectura) uses the Multipurpose Room weekly to hold club meetings for approximately 75 Spanish-speaking students. Because the sound system was so bad, the Director of Club de Lectura was forced to use a bull horn in an attempt to be heard! This is one of the reasons, specifically, why our grant “Hear Ye! Hear Ye!” was written. When the Director used the portable sound system for the first time, she literally cried.

Shorewood Mock Newbery Selection Committee
Sarah Gasamis, Librarian
The Shorewood Mock Newbery Selection Committee will read and discuss four novels that have been selected by the King County Library System to be potential contenders for the 2017 Newbery Medal, which is awarded to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American children’s literature. Being on the committee is an opportunity for eager readers to read four brand new, high quality novels and have higher order thinking discussions about the merits of the book and the author’s craft. This work encompasses nearly all of the 6th grade Common Core State Standards in literature.

Shorewood Mock Newbery Selection Committee

Having the funds to buy these books not only made the Mock Newbery program possible, which is important for many reasons, but it also promoted these titles in ways that I never could have. To have this many students in leadership roles in the school reading these books, commenting on them, and having passionate opinions about them, has made these books become some of the most popular titles in the library. Quite often the most popular books in the library are not considered to be of the highest quality (think Diary of a Wimpy Kid or Minecraft!) so this is quite important. The Mock Newbery program is a valuable experience on its own, however. Students create arguments around the book’s merit and empowers them to share their voice and defend their own opinions. To have students choose to be in this program shows that they find this work important and enjoyable, which is what is the most important.

STEM Centers for 1st Grade
Jenny Lin, 1st Grade Teacher
We would like to purchase STEM materials for our students to use during learning centers, rainy day recess, and choice time. We want to encourage and support all students to practice STEM skills throughout the day and have fun doing it. In addition to working on STEM skills, our students will be able to practice positive social skills of working together, sharing materials, planning and executing a project, and presentation skills.

Southern Heights Elementary
Highline 5th/6th Education Enhancement Grant
Abigail Bamburg, 5th/6th Grade General Education Teacher
At Southern Heights Elementary, 5th and 6th grade students currently use technology as a means for daily mathematical skills practice in addition to the lesson taught by the teacher. However, many of the students need more practice with skills not yet mastered from previous grades. Our hope is that through funding support for the IXL online membership, our students will be able to master skills taught in previous grades through pinpointed assignments and practice opportunities. We want to increase student confidence in computational and problem solving skills by the end of the school year.

Planting Seeds: Helping Students Understand Character and Theme in Narrative Text
Lana Baroudi, Teacher
Seedfolks in text form and as a literary adaptation in the form of a play, will allow students to do our reading work in a more authentic way. Through the text, students will explore ideas such as tolerance, generosity, community, and friendship through the varied perspectives of 13 characters. By watching the play, students will be able to see those thirteen characters’ perspectives portrayed through a one-woman show. What an amazing opportunity to see how an adaptation can still portray multiple perspectives and themes with only one actor.

The Sound of Success! Accessing Technology with Headphones!
Kaia Tomokiyo, Teacher
Having headphones for each device in our classroom is almost as important as having the devices themselves. With the proper equipment, more of my students will be able to use the technology we have to the fullest. Having hardware like headphones that are easy for 5-7 year-olds to use will help them become independent with technology, and lead them to becoming more tech-savvy and tech-literate.

The Sound of Success! Accessing Technology with Headphones!

Technology is part of our everyday life at school. We are lucky enough to have a class set of iPads shared with us, so we can use blended learning for math and reading. We use our new headphones to utilize Lexia, a reading and phonics program. Having more headphones has allowed me to have more students access the technology, and this allows me to reach more students in a variety of ways. Having more options for technology also allows my students to have more choice during the day. They can switch between reading books and doing phonics on Lexia. I have a group of students that is still struggling with letters and sounds, and it has been really helpful to have headphones so they can hear Lexia more clearly.

Sylvester Middle School
Alternative Seating
Julie Kastien, Teacher
All students who want and will benefit from wobble chairs should have equal access. This grant will double the wobble chairs and help end the lottery and rotation system used now to share the four wobble chairs in the classroom. One major component of personalized (differentiated) learning in my classroom has been the use of wobble chairs which assist with many different learning styles and challenges, and keep students engaged.

Technology, Engineering & Communications High School (TEC)
Trio Students Becoming Civic Leaders
Eric Burns, Upward Bound Teacher
Every year, the Washington State Trio Association hosts the Civic Leadership Conference in Olympia, Washington. This is an opportunity for students to hear from speakers and attend sessions pertaining to civic engagement, advocacy, and more pertaining to their own education. This unique experience gives students a voice in front of legislators in Olympia, and allows students deep insight into how politics works on a state level.

Tyee Campus
Reading Supports Student Achievement
Robert Vegar, Librarian
The Tyee Educational Complex needs funding to replace and add non-fiction titles to our current library collection. Students need access to interesting fiction titles. The library needs to acquire more ELL title choices. Students need to be surrounded by more high quality young adult fiction books As research states, the more titles young adult readers find interesting, those same students tend to read more.

Valley View Educational Center
Let’s Get Talking!
Kristin Wesp, Special Education Teacher- Extended Day
Let’s Get Talking provides student’s who are non-verbal, or have limited speech, with a voice through the use of Augmentative and Alternative Communication, and pictures. These tools will allow them to share all the knowledge they have, and their wants and needs that they otherwise would be unable to communicate.

Swinging to Success
Kristin Wesp, Special Education Teacher- Extended Day
Swinging to Success will provide students on the Autism Spectrum access to a tool that will help them to receive the sensory input they need. When my students become overstimulated by their environment, this swing will help them to regain control, and continue to have success in the classroom.

Waskowitz Environmental Leadership and Service (WELS)
Engaging Students Beyond the Classroom
Bennett Kling, Teacher
Engaging Students Beyond the Classroom is a project aimed to increase the success of WELS students by offering opportunities that have previously only been found at larger comprehensive schools. This grant will leverage funding for six new and existing clubs. It will kick off partnerships with three outside organizations.

Salish Sea Expeditions
Michaela Reynolds, Teacher
All students in the WELS Junior Program will be granted the opportunity to participate in a 3-day sailing trip through an organization called Salish Sea Expeditions. They will be given the unique experience to apply their marine technology and science knowledge out on the Puget Sound, collecting data like real scientists, and making memories for a lifetime. We hope to maintain this trip as a capstone for all future WELS Juniors so that they may have access to true experiential learning for years to come.

White Center Heights Elementary
2nd Grade Television Studio
Andrea Gardner, 2nd Grade Teacher
The 2nd Grade Television Studio at White Center Heights provides an opportunity for students to create fun, educational broadcasts to share with families and other students. The broadcasts will include student-created content that follows the curricula while offering a fun way for students to practice and demonstrate learning. Specific focus will be on creating stories that highlight communities and current school work.

2nd Grade Television Studio

We have the studio set up in the classroom and have used it for one big project (so far!). The students created artwork to go with poems about their culture. We took pictures of the artwork and then had the students stand in front of the green screen to read their poems. After a bit of movie magic, their artwork appeared (extra huge!) behind them as they were reading their poems. The completed project was presented during a school-wide assembly: Cultural Night in January 2017.

Assistive Technology
Kristen Gainer, ECSE Extended Day Teacher
We are requesting an iPad to use with our preschool students at White Center Heights with autism for the purpose of collecting data, accessing learning based Apps and assistive technology. This project will bring meaningful technology to Highline’s youngest learners!

Beautiful Books Beckoning our Bilingual Students
Nancy Hallberg, teacher/librarian
White Center Heights library is requesting money to purchase beautiful books that will beckoning our bilingual students to read more non-fiction in both English and Spanish. We want to support student in their learning, teachers in their teaching and parents as the first and essential models of what a good reader is.

The Power of Access: It’s All in the Eyes
Anne Hickey, Speech Language Pathologist/Assistive Technology Support
My grant submission, The Power of Access: It’s All in the Eyes, which supports the purchase of the Inclusive EyeGaze Education package will allow our students who present with profound motor delays to access a computer in their classroom through the use of their eyes. This access will support their ability demonstrate learned knowledge in all academic areas including reading, writing, math, science, social studies, communication, and social opportunities with their peers and family. Another way we in Highline can support ALL students.