Mini-Grant Application for School Year 2019-2020

Submitted by: Virginia Campbell Email: Grade Level: 2nd Subject: Science, Math
Co-Applicant: Email: Grade level: Subject:

School: Meadowlane Primary Elementary Type: Public Grade Levels:K-2 County:Brevard

Approx. Enrollment: 650 Number of teachers:60

School Address:

2800 Wingate Blvd.
West Melbourne, Florida 32904

Phone: 321-723-6354 Principal:Susie Schroeder Email:


Project Title: Inspiring the Creators of Tomorrow
Project Dates: 11/2019-05/2020 Grade Levels:

Focus Area(s) :Science- Engineering- Technology - Math

As a Media Specialist, I have started a Makerspace/STEAM program for my young students. Through the TERRA grant I am proposing a plan to expand the Makerspace opportunities beyond clubs and into media lessons so all students will have the opportunity to experience STEAM. I am proposing to purchase a class set of Sphero robots for our students to use in class. The activities are designed for all ages and skill levels so students can grow with them. Sphero Edu is a STEAM-based toolset that weaves hardware, software, and community engagement to promote 21st century skills. While these skills are absolutely crucial, the Sphero Edu program goes beyond code by nurturing students’ creativity and ingenuity. The Sphero Edu program is far more than just educational robots – it's a thriving community of over 3 million coders, makers, and learners who create and share inspiring content every day. This is a great opportunity for my young students to continue to grow their knowledge of coding by connecting them to the Sphero robots. Students will begin at the basic level learning how to code and continue to expand their knowledge by solving more difficult challenges and to problem solve as they complete various tasks including mazes. Art will be introduced as the "A" in STEAM as students code their spheros to create a painted picture as they are ready to take on more challenges. They will also have the opportunity to create a design to outfit their Sphero. With so many jobs currently open in the computer science field, it is important to introduce our students to these skills at a young age. Through this program we are creating a safe environment for students to collaborate and take risks as they learn coding skills.


How is your project innovative?   (25 points)
Our district's "Vision of Excellent Instruction" states every student will have daily engagement with complex, grade-appropriate curriculum. It also states that learning environments will be safe, welcoming, and encourage students to take the risks necessary to master the content. This grant will give students the opportunity to foster their creative and problem solving skills. They will become critical thinkers as they collaborate with others that have common goals as they solve challenges. These challenges will be student driven which allows students to work to their full potential. All students, no matter their level of reading or academic performance will be reached. Our school's School Improvement Plan focuses on efficacy and engagement. As student's are engaged, their achievement will increase and students will be better prepared to enter the work force later. All of the of the skills learned will embed STEAM into the curriculum for students. Our project is innovative because we are reaching some of our youngest students by teaching coding which is so often saved for much older students. We are making STEAM a part of their daily life to prepare them for the future at a young age.

How will it fit into your curriculum (include standards)? (10 points)
This grant proposal aligns to the Florida computer standards. SC.K2.CS-CS.2.2: Solve age-appropriate problems (e.g., puzzles and logical thinking programs) with or without technology. SC.K2.CS-CP.2.4: Construct a simple program using tools that do not require a textual programming language (e.g. block-based programming language). The Sphero Edu program engages our students using technology and by working together in teams students are collaborating as they are problem solving. The teacher becomes the facilitator as the learning in the program becomes student-led. Our District's Strategic Plan states that we must close achievement gaps, deliver quality non-core learning opportunities that provide students with a well-rounded education, and promote student acquisition of 21st Century Skills. The goal of this grant is to embed STEAM into our student's education to allow them to be focused and engaged in different activities using their imagination while problem solving.In addition, the Sphero Computer Science Course will allow students to use the Draw and Block Canvas to paint, write poetry, compose music, and dance bringing the A into STEAM. As students progress to programming with blocks, they’ll learn how to connect numbers in equations, play dice games, design guessing games, and create their own figure skating routines. Sphero builds a computational mindset in students: *Decomposition: Does the activity encourage the student to break a larger problem into smaller problems to come up with a solution? An example of a Sphero activity in the decomposition mindset is students solve complex problems through smaller,more manageable tasks. *Pattern for Recognition: Does the activity encourage students to identify common patterns? An activity in this mindset is students identify common patterns like movement, speed, light, time, or direction of the Sphero. *Pattern and Generalization and Abstraction: Does the activity encourage the student to make connection about common patterns of the Sphero? An activity in this mindset is students connect concepts, such as speed & direction to how far Sphero traveled. *Algorithm Design: Does the activity encourage the student to create logical steps that can be automated based on those patterns and connections? A Sphero activity in this mindset is students create programs to control the Sphero. These often require using patterns like loops, which can be used to automate repeated behavior.

How will it encourage long-lasting change in your classroom, school or community? (20 points)
The possibilities are endless with Sphero Edu. In the classroom's learning environments, Sphero is being used to teach computer science concepts and/or supplement content in any content area (math, ELA, science, art, music, health enhancement, and more). Sphero is incredibly versatile and easily integrated into a variety of learning initiatives such as personalized learning and project-based learning which is being seen more and more in the 21st century Media Center. This program is reaching students at all levels from beginning to more advanced. Even our special needs students are able to participate with these robot as they can even control it with their finger on the Ipad sending it in different directions. That is a huge long-lasting change for us as we are able to meet the needs of all our learners in our school. Students are learning how to problem-solve, use critical thinking skills, and work collaborative which is preparing them for their future as they will need these skills as they move to higher grades and into the workplace. Our students will be grasping early concepts of programming while fostering 21st century skills through activities such as replicating the solar system, programming characters in a story, or painting geometric shapes with the robot. Students are exposed to real world problems and the 4C’s (collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking).These program will extend into our school community as parent volunteers will be helping students are they are using the Sphero robots. And looking further into the future, I would like to have students participating in a Sphero Edu friendly competition with other schools so our students will learn to work together with new friends. We will call it the "Sphero Olympics"!

How will technology be utilized?  (20 points)
Sphero is the perfect platform to help students develop the mindsets that are necessary to compete in a global,technology-rich 21st century economy. Integrating Sphero into learning activities provides an opportunity to enhance 21st century skills such as creativity, collaboration, critical-thinking, and communication. The Sphero Edu App allows collaboration with other users around the globe to innovate the world of education and empower anyone to program. Everything about Sphero Edu is linked to technology. Students can use an app on the Ipad or computer to code their Sphero to move to solve their challenges. Students are introduced to basic block coding that becomes increasingly more difficult as they challenges are mastered and they continue onto higher levels. As students are learning how to code these little robots they are using their reading and math skills to accomplish the tasks. This in turn leads to high student engagement which will increase their testing scores on their classroom assessments. We will use their scores from the beginning of the year to the end to compare in the hopes to see an increase.

What evidence will you collect to show student gain?   (10 points)
Photos and videos will be taken to watch students as they progress and the challenges becoming increasingly more difficult. We will have students monitoring their own progress at the end of each time we use the Spheros. They will video themselves on Flipgrid assessing what worked and what changes they need to make the next time. Through this documentation students are becoming responsible for their own learning. Students will be using block coding which will require them to apply reading and math skills. We will track students progress on their monthly classroom assessments in the hopes that we will see an increase in their scores. The robots are engaging and through that engagement we believe we will see an increase in the student's achievement levels. This is aligned with our School Improvement Plan.

How will participants share your project results with the community?  (15 points)
This year we are hosting a STEAM Family Night in conjunction with Read Across America, the first week of March. Students will have the opportunity to bring their parents and complete Sphero STEAM challenges together. Students will have become familiar with the Sphero and will be able to lead their parents as they complete the challenges. We will also post pictures of videos on our school website and facebook page as well as updating parents in our weekly school newsletter. We want our parents to see the great things our young students are learning as they explore Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math (STEAM)!


Service/ Item Description Cost
Sphero Computer Science Foundation, Course 1 199.00
Sphero BOLT Power Pack, Code Mat, and Activity Cards (15 Sphero Robots with Charging Case) 2652.98
Total Cost of Project 2851.98
Total Requested from TERRA 2851.98
If matching funds identified list source:
Donated Goods/Services:

I, Virginia Campbell, certify that the application is complete and final, AND I verify that I have received permission to apply for these funds from Susie Schroeder,the Principal of Meadowlane Primary Elementary and any other individuals required by my school district.