Mini-Grant Application for School Year 2017-2018

Submitted by: Teresa Rizzo Email: Grade Level: K-2 Subject: Technology, STEM, Language, Ar
Co-Applicant: Email: Grade level: Subject:

School: Old Kings Elementary Type: Public Grade Levels:K-6 County:Flagler

Approx. Enrollment: 1 Number of teachers:65

School Address:

301 Old Kings Rd S
Flagler Beach, Florida 32136

Phone: (386) 517-2060 Principal:Ben Osypian    Email:

Project Title: Using iPads to Get Up Close with Nature
Project Dates: December, -May, 2018 Grade Levels:

Focus Area(s) :STEM- Technology- Language Arts - Scientific Investigations

Learning happens everywhere, not just within the classroom walls. This project will provide K-2 students with the opportunity to observe and explore nature, while documenting their observations and inquiry questions using note-taking, audio recording, and camera features on an iPad. This outdoor classroom space will include garden root viewers, a butterfly garden, a bug “hotel”, and outdoor seating for students to enjoy nature while engaging in Florida Science Standards. PBSKids “Nature Cat’s Great Outdoors” is a kid-friendly digital portfolio app that provides young students with a compass, digital journal, audio recorder, and camera to help document what they find while observing nature. For example, if students hear birds chirping, they can record the sounds with the audio tool, then create a journal entry to ask questions they would like to find out about the bird. They can take pictures of interesting plants and animals, and even document the transformation of their garden, from seeds to plants with flowers and vegetables. Later students will combine their photos, audio recordings, and notes to create multimedia projects using apps such as iMovie, Seesaw, and Buncee. Screen time is a consideration, particularly for our youngest learners. We want them utilizing technology to enhance their hands-on learning experiences and create artifacts, rather than playing drill and practice games. Through this project, students will begin to understand that technology such as the iPad is a tool and not a toy, and take pride in what they are able to learn and create.


How is your project innovative?   (25 points)
This project is innovative in how it combines hands-on learning with technology. K-2 students are naturally curious and love nature, however they are not always asked to express their thoughts, or encouraged to question what they see. Using the iPad to help students document their observations and questions, provides them with a portfolio that can be shared with parents, teachers, and the community. These portfolios also help teachers, parents, and students understand the progress they have made over the year; how their questioning skills evolve, how their writing and speaking skills improve, and how their scientific knowledge grows. The project is also innovative in that it provides students with an engaging outdoor space and habitat, welcoming a variety of plants and animals that students will have the opportunities to observe throughout the year.

How will it fit into your curriculum (include standards)? (10 points)
K-2 Students will use the Nature Cat app to write in the digital journal each day as they make observations and conduct investigations in the outside learning space. LAFS.K12.W.4.10 Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences. K-2 students will make observations, take pictures, and record audio to capture artifacts and generate questions and answers while learning in the outdoor classroom space. SC.K.L.14.3 Observe plants and animals, describe how they are alike and how they are different in the way they look and in the things they do. SC.K.N.1.2 Make observations of the natural world and know that they are descriptors collected using the five senses. SC.K.N.1.3 Keep records as appropriate -- such as pictorial records -- of investigations conducted. SC.1.L.14.1 Make observations of living things and their environment using the five senses. SC.1.N.1.1 Raise questions about the natural world, investigate them in teams through free exploration, and generate appropriate explanations based on those explorations. SC.1.N.1.3 Keep records as appropriate - such as pictorial and written records - of investigations conducted. SC.2.L.16.1 Observe and describe major stages in the life cycles of plants and animals, including beans and butterflies. SC.2.L.17.2 Recognize and explain that living things are found all over Earth, but each is only able to live in habitats that meet its basic needs. SC.2.N.1.1 Raise questions about the natural world, investigate them in teams through free exploration and systematic observations, and generate appropriate explanations based on those explorations. SC.2.N.1.2 Compare the observations made by different groups using the same tools. K-2 students will utilize multimedia apps to create digital portfolios documenting their learning in the outdoor space. LAFS.K12.W.2.6 With guidance and support from adults, explore a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing, including in collaboration with peers.

How will it encourage long-lasting change in your classroom, school or community? (20 points)
From this project, students will develop a greater appreciation for living things and understand the importance of a healthy habitat for plant and animal survival. Students will increase their ability to make observations, conduct investigations, generate inquiry questions, and effectively utilize technology to record and curate information, as well as communicate ideas. These skills will benefit students throughout high school and college, as well as in their careers.

How will technology be utilized?  (20 points)
Students will utilize iPads to document their observations in the outdoor classroom space. Recent iPad updates allow for multi-user accounts, which will allow students to log in to the iPad and access their records in Nature Cat Great Outdoors and other apps. After they log out. students in other classes can sign in and access their unique files. This update allows the ipads to be shared much more easily than in the past. Students will utilize the Nature Cat app to record in a digital journal, record audio comments and nature sounds, and take pictures of plants and animals. Students will also create portfolios to document their learning using apps such as iMovie, Seesaw, and Buncee. They will use the iPad camera to take pictures of their plant and animal observations, as well as to record a timelapse of their garden as it grows.

What evidence will you collect to show student gain?   (10 points)
Student digital journals and portfolios will be evaluated to measure student mastery of the standards. Students will be evaluated in their ability to make accurate observations and document them, as well as their ability to ask and answer questions about nature, and communicate their ideas through their portfolios and journals. A pre and post test of relevant standards will also be given to determine student growth.

How will participants share your project results with the community?  (15 points)
Our digital journals and portfolios will be shared with parents and community members at the annual STEM night at our school. We will also contact our local newspaper and news station to inform them about this project. Community members and parents will be invited to visit our outdoor classroom area during school events.


Service/ Item Description Cost
iPads 2017 and Defender Cases $2,728.00
4 in. x 4 in. x 8 ft. #2 Ground Contact Pressure-Treated Southern Yellow Pine Timber $29.00
48 in. x 96 in. x 1/8 in. Acrylic Sheet (for building Root Viewer) $120.00
#10 x 3 in. Philips Bugle-Head Coarse Thread Sharp Point Polymer Coated Exterior Screw $9.00
1 cu. Ft. Potting Mix Soil $114.00
Total Cost of Project $3,000
If matching funds identified list source: n/a
Donated Goods/Services: n/a

I, Teresa Rizzo, certify that the application is complete and final, AND I verify that I have received permission to apply for these funds from Ben Osypian   ,the Principal of Old Kings Elementary and any other individuals required by my school district.