Mini-Grant Application for School Year 2017-18

Submitted by: Barbara Wilcox Email: Grade Level: TK Subject:
Co-Applicant: Email: Grade level: Subject:

School: Tropical Elementary Type: Public Grade Levels:K-6 County:Brevard

Approx. Enrollment: 780 Number of teachers:54

School Address:

885 S. Courtenay Pkwy
Merritt Island, Florida 32952

Phone: 321-454-1080 Principal:Kristin Sorokin Email:

Project Title: Tropical Treasures
Project Dates: October 20-May 2018 Grade Levels:

Focus Area(s) :reading- technology- science - social studies

There are two projects I’d like to implement with my Transitional Kindergarten (TK) students (ages 5-7): 1. Padlet Pledges: Every week we collaborate with our 6th grade buddies. Our projects include opportunities to promote positivity in the world. Padlet Pledges implements writing through padlet entries then requesting participation from appropriate stakeholders, to which TK will read and respond. This supports our goal of reading and writing with a purpose as well as utilizing technology while collaborating with others. 2. EARTH Buddies: One of our needs at Tropical is to have funds for teachers to plant their classroom gardens. Most classrooms have an area outside their back door for a mini- garden, but they are rarely utilized, as the teachers would have to provide their own funding. EARTH Buddies (my TK class) will develop a mini-grant, available to all classrooms, and will evaluate their responses in order to determine who should receive the garden funding. This will enable my students to use higher-order thinking skills at an evaluative level. In order to do this, my class will first build their own garden as Hurricane Irma destroyed the former garden. The students will learn about plants and what it takes to build a garden so they will be familiar with the process prior to writing, reading, and evaluating the mini-grants. The students will decide the exact wording of the mini grants and develop a rubric to evaluate the requests. Possible grant outlines could include students writing an essay of what they want to do and learn in the garden, a garden art contest, a questionnaire or survey, or even a research project. TK will develop an exit survey for documentation of results. This collaborative project will also be completed with the support of our 6th grade buddies.


How is your project innovative?   (25 points)
Padlet Pledges and EARTH buddies are both innovative and collaborative projects. They provide “out of the classroom” experiences- through interactions with peers, older students, other classrooms, parents, local and international communities. They are Service Learning projects, supporting Character Development in my students as well as academic learning. Both of these yearlong projects will provide multiple avenues for my students to grow and promote well-being and/or learning with others. As the projects will be mostly student directed, it is a very high-level learning experience, not only for TK but also for our 6th grade buddies. Padlet Pledges is unique in the fact that it brings the world into our classroom. It enables us to have communications with others around the world in a positive forum. Learning and growth happens through real-life opportunities. EARTH Buddies is also unique in the fact that normally this type of project, usually implemented with secondary students, will be implemented by some of the youngest learners at our school. This project enables my students to read a wide variety of applications that will ultimately make a difference in our school- a visual they will be able to see when they walk around our campus. It is a real-life opportunity that they instituted for others to learn. They will be able to see the difference they made which will encourage them to continue doing for others.

How will it fit into your curriculum (include standards)? (10 points)
Padlet Pledges: These projects will support my TK students in reading, writing, social studies, and technology standards. Some projects, such as America Recycles, will also support additional disciplines such as math or science. • Specific Reading Standards include RF.TK.3: Read common high-frequency words by sight, associate the long and short sounds with the common spellings for the five major vowels, demonstrate basic knowledge of letter-sound correspondences, know and apply grade-level phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words. • Language: L.TK.2: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing. • Writing: W.TK.2: participate in creating a variety of informational/expository forms through drawing or writing. W.TK.6: produce, edit, illustrate and share a finished piece of writing (exploring a variety of digital tools). • Social Studies: SS.TK.C.2.1: demonstrate the characteristics of being a good citizen. EARTH Buddies: These projects will support reading, writing and science standard. • Language: SL.TK.1: participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about TK topics in small and larger groups through listening and speaking (determining mini grant requirements, evaluating mini-grants, sharing information about mini-grants), L.TK.1: Demonstrates command of conventions of standard English grammar and usage when speaking. L.TK.2: Demonstrates command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing (writing mini-grant requirements, feedback on mini-grants, sharing completed projects with stakeholders and media) RF.TK.3: Know and apply grade-level phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words (reading mini grants). • Science: SC.TK.L.14.2: Identify the major parts of plants, including stem, roots, leaves, and flowers as well as their functions. SC.TK.L.17.1: Recognize that all plants and animals, including humans, need the basic necessities of air, water, food and space.

How will it encourage long-lasting change in your classroom, school or community? (20 points)
Both projects will encourage long-lasting change in our classroom and school including academically through a mastery of integrated standards, physically and emotionally (students getting along with students), visually (visual aids, encouragement to make a difference through Padlet activities), and structurally in the Earth Buddies (update school grounds). Both projects encourage TK and their 6th grade buddies to collaborate and cooperate. The projects support students in using academics to make a difference in their school, their community and the world. These projects are the building blocks to student advocacy for the future. If students can realize at the age of 5-7 that their actions can make the world a better place for others, just think what will happen if they continue down this learning path! These projects promote confidence in students also. It provides them a way to shine, which further encourages them to continue to implement ideas that make their hearts happy.

How will technology be utilized?  (20 points)
Padlet Pledges: This project relies on technology for communication with others. TK, with the support of their 6th grade buddies, will implement multiple padlet projects throughout the year. Check out Tropical Recycles at for our contribution to America Recycles Day in November 2016, in which our recipient was our entire Tropical community. This project is the inspiration to implement more Padlet projects. Padlets will include, but not be limited to the following ideas: • Tropical Recycles • PEACEwings : Sending student-designed paper butterflies around the world to promote peace and requesting participant to upload a photo of themselves with their butterfly or adding a peace thought. • Valentine Wishes: Sending Valentine love notes to parents and relatives. • Dr. Seuss Day: Sending Dr. Seuss quotes and information about Dr. Seuss and the importance of reading to other classrooms in the district and/or world. • Earth Day: Sending out ideas on how to care for the earth, quotes about taking care of the earth and pledges on what you will do to care for the earth. • Student generated ideas. EARTH Buddies: Technology will be utilized through word processing programs to develop the mini-grant and evaluation rubrics. Other options include student reflections through a photo gallery or word processing program, utilizing Google Classrooms to write the mini-grant requirements, develop PowerPoints to document projects and share for media purposes. Technology will also be utilized in individual viewing of pertinent you-tube videos (for example, watching a video of how a plant grows).

What evidence will you collect to show student gain?   (10 points)
Peace Pledges: Student Achievement: TK writing goals: 100% of the students in TK will show growth on the District Writing Assessments. 85% of the TK students will meet the highest level of achievement, Level 6, by the end of the year. TK reading goals: 95% of the TK students will be reading at a level 10 by the end of the year. EARTH Buddies: 100% of TK students will score 90% or better on the Life Science Exam. 100% of TK students will pass specific teacher made assessments pertaining to life cycle of plants and parts of a plant and its purpose.

How will participants share your project results with the community?  (15 points)
Peace Pledges: The main goal of these projects are to involve the community. This includes our school community (6th grade buddies as well as other classes), our local community (families, local businesses, government officials, etc.) our American community (different states, federal government) and international communities (other countries, possible future pen pals). The communities will be helping us share the project so they will also have access to any results. EARTH Buddies: The goal of this project is to involve our in-school community, which includes students, teachers and volunteers. The results of these projects will be shared through classroom newsletters, school newsletters as well as our PTO Facebook. Information is shared with our District communication team, but they decide whether or not to publish information. Information is also shared with our local media connections who also decide whether to publish.


Service/ Item Description Cost
5 Lenovo @ $351.50 each. N24 Touch/Intel Celeron N3060 1.6 GHz/4 GB/128 GB/BT/ 11.6”HD/ac/Pen/W1 1757.50
Update to TK garden include but not limited to plants, seeds, dirt, stakes, signage 350.00
$850 for mini-grants (approximately 17 grants of $50.00 each) 850.00
Total Cost of Project 2957.50
If matching funds identified list source:
Donated Goods/Services:10% discount from Rockledge Gardens, Volunteer ser varied amount

I, Barbara Wilcox , certify that the application is complete and final, AND I verify that I have received permission to apply for these funds from Kristin Sorokin,the Principal of Tropical Elementary and any other individuals required by my school district.