Giving Makes a Difference
Giving can make a big difference in expanding learning opportunities for students in Shorewood Schools. The Shorewood SEED (Supporters of Excellence in Education Development) Foundation has helped raise over $200,000 annually to help fund projects, grants, and other various monetary needs of the Shorewood School District since 2003.
Discovery Education Streaming Plus in School Libraries
During the 2013-2014 school year, $31,207.50 was awarded to Shorewood School District librarians Sara Kemp and Alan Karbel for the purchase of Discovery Education Streaming Plus, a multimedia offering that excites and engages students while providing educators with instructional support and assessment resources for the development of 21st century learning skills. Elementary school librarian Alan Karbel discusses the benefits of Discovery Education and how it is currently being used in the District.
1.) What inspired you to write the SEED grant?
Prior to this year, Atwater and the high school had both been using Discovery Education and liked it. Both schools' subscriptions were expiring and there wasn't enough money in the libraries' budgets to renew them, so we decided to see if SEED would be interested in funding this resource for the entire district.
2.) What exactly is Discovery Streaming Plus and how do teachers use it in their classrooms?
Discovery Education Streaming Plus is a collection of rich multimedia resources. It includes instructional videos, skill builders, games, audio files, images, writing prompts, and encyclopedia reference materials supporting multiple learning styles. Their video library features exclusive, award-winning titles from Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, Science Channel, and more. Teachers can use these resources in numerous ways to motivate, excite and enrich student learning. The great thing about Discovery Education is that they do not just provide resources: They also provide online and face-to-face teacher training, as well as a variety of strategies, virtual events and classroom challenges.
3.) How did you determine that this would be the best use of additional resources?
We both knew how rich and valuable Discovery Education Streaming resources are. We wanted to make them available to the entire Shorewood district.
4.) How has Discovery Streaming impacted classrooms thus far?
We're still in the process of training staff on all the features of DE Streaming Plus, but usage of DE resources has continued to increase each month. Classroom teachers have shared a few ways that they use it:
Third graders were shown videos on curriculum content, most recently landforms. After viewing the video several times, students wrote a fact they learned from the video clip on a post-it note, then did a fact read and swap. Students found the lessons engaging!
Fifth grade students used the Discovery Education site when they were researching their planet for their science unit on astronomy. Most of the students viewed short video clips that were engaging and gave updated, accurate information about their planet. The video format was motivating for students and helped them keep pushing for more information than they had learned from books. Also, taking notes while watching a video is a difficult skill. Because students were watching it independently, they could re-watch important parts or pause it to record information in their notes.
Sixth grade science students have used the interactive vocabulary module for their unit in ecology. Students have also used DE's experimental simulations provided from Discovery Education to control variables and interpret data generated by running virtual experiments.
Students who are newcomers to the US, level 1 & 2 ELL students, are currently researching science topics. They were assigned a DE video segment to watch specific to their topic. They all watched their video at least four times; once without sound, then with sound. They then took picture and word notes about what they learned from the videos.
5.) Were you optimistic that your grant proposal was going to be chosen for fulfillment?
Not terribly optimistic, but we thought that SEED would be interested in funding this since it impacts all students and staff in the school district in so many ways.
6.) Why do you think philanthropy is important for Shorewood Schools?
With school funding as tight as it is and there being no end in sight to that changing, philanthropy plays a very important role in keeping quality educational programs and resources available to Shorewood students and staff.
For more information about how you can support new learning experiences for students in Shorewood Schools, visit the SEED website at www.shorewoodseed.org or contact Ted Knight at firstname.lastname@example.org or 414-961-3161.
Tuesday February, 10, 2015 at 02:21PM
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