Olympus America Inc., in partnership with Tool Factory, Inc., has announced the winners of the Spring 2006 Classroom Grants Program designed to strengthen visual learning and education through digital imaging. More than 4,000 teachers have submitted projects to the Olympus/Tool Factory Classroom Grants Program since its launch in the spring 2005 and this is the third time that grants have been awarded.
Olympus and Tool Factory are continuing to support the Classroom Grants Program. The deadline for Winter 2007 entries is January 5, 2007, followed by the June 30, 2007, deadline for the Spring 2007 Classroom Grants Program.
The Spring 2006 Grant Winners:
The five winning grants were selected based on effective use of digital cameras and technology in the curriculum, high degree of student involvement, and creativity and fun.
· Dawn Conrad, Central High School, Zachary, Louisiana: A Star is Born!
The project explores nutrition and health as students build a multimedia illustrated how-to guide and cookbook of over 100 recipes. First students will build a recipe database and then, while working in teams, they will write, direct, act in, and film a cooking segment showing the preparation of many of these recipes. The project promotes discovery learning and exposes students to creative thinking, problem solving, organizational skills and teamwork.
· Marcy Anderson, Unadilla Elementary School, Unadilla, NY: Wanted - Dead or Alive!
This K - 3rd grade interdisciplinary curriculum combines art with English and Social Studies. Students must research a trickster from African folk tales and then create a "Most Wanted" poster of the character. The posters will feature a description of the suspect; charges against the suspect; a reward amount; contact info; and a photograph of the suspect created out of a clay model students have made of the trickster. Students will also animate a video of the trickster's story utilizing the clay model.
· Ganan Fannin, Tilden Hogge Elementary School, Morehead, Kentucky: The Flat Stanley Project
This project is based off of Jeff Brown's book, Flat Stanley in which a bulletin board flattens a young boy. Students will create two of their own flat Stanleys and the first will be used in classroom activities in math (calculate how many Stanleys it takes to cover the length of the hallway), language arts (write a new ending to how Stanley re-inflates himself), nutrition (research into flat foods) and more. The second Stanley will be mailed around the world with a questionnaire about the destination area as well as a request for images of the destination area to be returned with the questionnaire.
· Kila Henry, Northeast Nodaway R-V High School, Ravenwood, Missouri: Technology as a Tool of Science
This high school biology and environmental science class proposal will supplement the science curriculum. Students will work in "Stream Teams" to monitor water quality and to tackle environmental problems at the local level. Digital cameras will be used in photo point monitoring which is a quick, effective method for documenting change in vegetation and soil through repeat photography and the software will be used to create a visual database of the sampling site.
· Jean Pollack, Warren Project TEACH/TEC, Port Murray, New Jersey: The Mini-Me People Iditarod
Each year this alternative high school for pregnant teenagers and students at risk studies the Iditarod Sled Dog Race. For this project, students will build their own sled, utilizing Tool Factory software to make the schematics of the sled and the Olympus digital cameras to capture the phases of construction. Upon the sled's completion, students will host their own Iditarod, pulling one another in a race to the finish.
Each of the five grant winners receives $3,550 in prizes that include three Olympus FE 130 5.1 megapixel digital cameras, Tool Factory Workshop software for project building, 30 Digital Camera Basics books and $500 cash. The 11 runners-up will each receive a Tool Factory software site license, a value of $2,000.
Educators can visit http://www.toolfactory.com/olympus_contest to complete a one-page online application for an opportunity to win one of the five classroom grants awarded in each program. The application requires only basic information from the teacher, a description of the proposed project for which the grant will be used, and a budget for up to $500. Grant winners are chosen by a panel of professional educators and educational technology specialists.
Source: Olympus America, Inc., http://www.olympusamerica.com/education/; Tool Factory, Inc., http://www.toolfactory.com