The Nashua Education Foundation has approved grants totaling over $12,650.00 to support innovative programs and projects that enhance the education of Nashua School District students. Six elementary schools, two middles schools and both high schools have received funding.

The grants include

I’m All Ears allows intensive needs students at Main Dunstable Elementary School to enjoy listening to a variety of books on CD as they are brought to life by story tellers.   The students will be able to follow along with accompanying books to aid in their comprehension and reading fluency. NEF award: $200.00

Immediately knowing whether students are understanding concepts is critical to effective teaching and can significantly impact student learning.    Typically, teachers use a show of hands or a “thumbs up or down” approach.  If a student is reluctant to stand out or hasn’t grasped the concept completely, these methods are ineffective.  With funds from NEF, two third grade classrooms at Sunset Heights Elementary School will be piloting technology based assessment tools that allow teachers to see understanding instantly.  The Mimio Vote System  allows students to use “voting” response clickers.  Data from the clickers is available on the computer in real time so that instruction can be adjusted.  With the Qwizdom Empowering Intelligent Interaction System, both teacher and student get immediate feedback to the student’s response to a question, enabling students to help guide their own learning. NEF combined award: $3,235.00.

Students at Sunset Heights Elementary School will observe, investigate, collect data and experience hands on learning in their new outdoor classroom setting. The project includes a sensory garden, a weather station, water collection area and composting bins.  Students will also be able to enjoy the “fruits of their labor” by consuming fresh produce from the garden.  Math, science, social studies and writing will be integrated into the lessons taught as part of the Sunset Heights community collaboration.  NEF award: $2,000.00.

A classroom projector will be the cornerstone of technology that will accommodate all learners in a Grade 2 classroom at Sunset Heights.  Students will have access through technology to curriculum e-books that help further develop comprehension, vocabulary and reading skills. NEF award: $549.00.

Ledge Street Elementary School: Junior FIRST Lego League has arrived at Ledge Street School.  Students at Ledge Street got a glimpse of the kinds of projects they would be working on from a visiting Lego League team last spring.  With NEF funding, Ledge Street students are using Lego League to demonstrate “The Leader in Me” program in classrooms throughout their school and are excited about competing in the Lego League.     NEF award: $1490.00.

Bicentennial Elementary School:  All first graders at Bicentennial School will experience hands on learning in their animal habitat lessons as part of the district’s National Geographic science curriculum. NEF provided funding to purchase animal pelts which will be used in lessons several times throughout the year.    NEF award: $250.00.

Beneficial to tactile learners at Main Dunstable Elementary School, the Drum Making project, with support from NEF, enables students to participate in the Native American tradition of drum making as part of their third grade social studies program.  A culminating “Drum Awakening” ceremony allows students to share their knowledge of Native American culture and demonstrate the ancient drum making tradition.  NEF award: $250.00.

The Outside Connections Club at Pennichuck Middle School incorporates service learning, expeditionary learning, environmental science and provides outdoor recreation opportunities for students at Pennichuck Middle School.    NEF funding provided support for the club’s program which successfully mapped new community hiking trails at Nashua’s Roby Park.  NEF award: $250.00.

Nashua High School North students were able to learn first-hand from well known storyteller Simon Brooks through a grant from NEF.  Students soon implemented lessons learned in their class presentations and even inspired a new version of the classic Little Red Riding Hood from Brooks.  NEF award: $250.00.

Amherst Elementary School received technology funding to help improve mathematics.   Amherst Street students and their teachers are using document cameras in their Magnifying Math program.    NEF award: $630.00.

Students Off And Running (SOAR) at Fairgrounds Middle School received funding to help incoming sixth graders transition to middle school.  NEF funds provided supplemental materials to the program which takes place prior to the start of the school year so that sixth graders can SOAR at Fairgrounds from the very beginning.  NEF award $600.00.

The Ripple Effect at Nashua High School South is a collaboration between High School student writers, singers and artists, The Nashua Symphony Association, composers and Poet Laureate Marie Harris.  NEF funding supported student involvement.  The collaboration culminates with a performance showcasing student art, choral and orchestral performances and musical compositions inspired by student poetry. NEF award: $1,000.00. 

Birch Hill Elementary School’s The Next Step for Effective Instruction program will integrate technology in the classroom to motivate and teach important concepts.  Birch Hill School received funding directly from NEF and through NEF partnerships.  NEF award: $1,500.00.

Non-fiction books for a Fairgrounds Middle School classroom were provided to supplement and expand reading options for students.   NEF award: $250.00.

Math enrichment kits were provided to Amherst Street Elementary School for students to bring home their excitement for math and enable family members to learn the terminology and strategies used to teach math in the classroom. NEF award: $400.00.