Excellence in Education (EIE) Grants in 2021
Hazel Dell Landscaping Project, presented by Ag Instructor Lara (Daentl) Hammerly, will provide students in the spring 2022 Landscaping Class an opportunity to plan, design and install plantings to beautify the Hazel Dell country school grounds with selections appropriate to that period in history. Hazel Dell is located to the west of the high school and was believed to be established around 1876. To learn more about this school and others that existed in this district, please check out pages 6-66 in the Iowa-Grant History Book for more details. Thanks goes to the Marge & Clyde Wagner Excellence in Education Endowment Fund for supporting this project.
Coffee Cart Fridays was begun several years ago by IGEMS special education teachers providing a way for their students to provide coffee to teachers on Fridays and in the process learn how to work together as they develop their communication skills, build self-confidence and understand money concepts. Now with more support by IGEF they are expanding to the high school with their "Brew Crew" effort and will add an additional feature of reusable mugs personalized to each staff person who participates. Teacher, Dawn Johnson, sees this as a valuable opportunity to increase functional math, written and verbal communication, social thinking and interaction, direction following and sequencing steps which may ultimately lead to more vocational type skills training.
New Kindergarten Egg Incubator will be in place for spring 2022 when the kindergarten teachers offer that memorable experience again. This purchase will replace a much older one and provide a more consistant result with more chicks for these kids to learn from.
Excellence in Education (EIE) Grants in 2020
Botanical and Community Garden Project presented by Ag Instructor Lara (Daentl) Hammerly is designed to provide students in the “Intro to Ag and Greenhouse/Landscaping Course” an opportunity to build garden beds for the community garden, along with updating the indoor botanical garden at the high school.
The newly established Marge & Clyde Wagner Excellence in Education Endowment Fund helped in part to fund this project.
Learning by OSMOsis presented by Carolyn Laufenberg. The OSMO is an ingenious, innovative and creative accessory that turns the iPad into an interactive hands-on learning space. It uses a mirror that clips over an iPad camera and then works with Osmo’s free apps (like Tangram, number and letter tiles.) Osmos can be used for spelling, math, tangrams, problem solving, engineering, physics and drawing games for K-4 and special education classrooms.
Kindergarten Field Trip by Heather Mayne. This trip involves a fall field trip to the Black Earth Children’s Museum and the Peck pumpkin patch for 55 students and their families. This event promotes family engagement and exposure to local places to play and learn.
Superior Coastal Climate Camp 2020 by Tim Donovan. The focus of this 6th grade 3 day, 2 night trip is to study the effects of climate change in forest and water ecosystems in the Apostle Islands, and to learn how climate change is affecting American and Ojibwa culture. This trip was slated for June 2020 but has been delayed until further notice pending the Covid 19 situation.
Social Emotional Journals. Through these individual student journals presented to fifty 7th graders, teacher, Holly Allen, hopes to provide social and emotional well being during the uncertainties of the COVID. Students will be able to express their thoughts, feelings and self-reflection in these personal diaries which will only be shared with the teacher but hopefully provide opportunity for general discussion of issues that concern the students.
Science Stream Table. Science teacher, Kendall Foley, will be using a height adjustable stream and sand table to explore how water moves and affects the world around them. The table allows 5 different water jets to flow at once to demonstrate erosion and drainage patterns, formation of stream processes and delta and lake formation through a removable dam. Sixty 8th graders and forty-five 5th graders will experience this hands-on approach and apply the thinking to how water flows around where they live with natural creeks, water falls and farm land.
2018-2019 Excellence in Education (EIE) Grants & Activities
June 2018 - Superior Coastal Climate Camp: This was a 4 day, 3 night field trip for sixth graders to Lake Superior. Working with Northland College and the Environmental Education Center, the students learned about the effects of climate change on the Great Lakes, the interplay of the ecosystems, and the native Indian cultures (Ojibwa) of the area. Twenty-five students took part in the trip.
May 2018 - Welcome to our School:
Students studying landscaping with Ag teacher, Eric Johannesen, researched plantings and design for installing an updated look around the high school sign on County IG.
May 2018 - Imathimation: Iowa-Grant added to their parent involvement programming with the addition of a math night. Imathimation is a presentation and program designed to bring parents and students to enjoy mathematics and all of its wonderful uses in our lives. Imathimation encourages kids to think outside the box and to use their “imathimation” to envision all the ways in which math affects their lives every day. Playing on ordinary situations to create extraordinary excitement, students and parents look to find math in cooking, shopping, music and a variety of other areas to motivate them to see the math all around them. The presenter from Mobile Ed was entertaining and kept the children involved and interested. About fifty parents and students attended in the evening. In all, the program served 400 students during the day.
Spring 2018 - Pi Day Celebration: Math students at the high school celebrated Pi Day, March 16, 2017 by eating an arc of a circle... a real piece of pie. The importance of phi in mathematics had been studied and used throughout the year in all math classes. This Pi Day celebration is nationwide and brings math solutions into a real world application. A total of 140 students and 10 teachers participated. Approximately 13 pies were consumed.
Fall 2017 - Field Trip to Black Earth Children’s Museum: The entire kindergarten class participated in a field trip to the Children's Museum in Black Earth. This opportunity extended their experiences beyond our district in a fun and interactive way while learning about science, dramatic play and history with hands-on activities.
Trees For Tomorrow - An Outdoor Experience for IGEMS's 7th Graders.
Fall 2017 - The Iowa-Grant Educational Foundation once again helped to sponsor these 7th graders, as they experienced several days of "Trees For Toworrow" learning in Eagle River, WI under the direction of teacher, Randy Rodgers.
Photo - On their way to Eagle River, IGEMS "Trees For Tomorrow" 7th grade students hiked at Parfrey's Glen State Natural Area.
Winter 2017 - The Iowa-Grant Educational Foundation was one of the sponsors when twenty four students from the Iowa-Grant Middle School traveled to Eagle River for a Trees for Tomorrow trip in January 2017. Seventh grade teacher, Randy Rodgers, along with 2 other chaperones from IGEMS guided the students as they experienced snowshoeing, cross country skiing, tree, plant and animal identification and tracking, journaling their observations, radio telemetry, biomimicry, land use discussions and time for creative inventions using designs from nature.
Missoula Theater Summer 2017
In 2016, the Iowa-Grant Educational Foundation helped the district bring in the Missoula Children’s Theatre Group to expose kids to performance and keep them engaged even during the summer. Children ages 6-18 got the opportunity to act, sing, and dance in a full-length musical, most of whom had never even had the chance to see a musical performance before.
“The first grant started the momentum. When the community saw what the kids could do, support came in” says Tricia Sander, teacher and grant applicant. “That ‘seed’ money helped leverage additional support and now our ticket sales help fund the camp as a continuing summer project for the students, teachers and our community,” Tricia says.
The group, which included more than 60 student performers, sold out every show in both summers.
In additon, the Missoula group conducted an in-service for teachers on how to bring theater into the classroom setting, a lesson Tricia said was beneficial for getting kids more comfortable reading out loud and more confident in themselves.
“We wouldn’t have been able to start this without the grant,” Tricia explains. “It’s grown in areas I never dreamed it would.”
It should be noted that financial support came from additional sources as well, such as the Elmer G Biddick Charitable Foundation, The IGEMS PTC, and the Livingston Safe and Stable Family Group.
IGEF brings Children Author and Illustrator to IGEMS
April 2017 - Mr. Rick Chrustowski, a children's author and illustrator, gave a presentation to students in grades K-8. He spoke about the process he uses when writing and illustrating nonfiction picture books. He shared photographs from his information gathering stage of writing and gave a "quick draw" demonstration while explaining how he approaches illustrating. This event was made possible through the efforts of Title 1 Reading Specialist, Carolyn Laufenberg.
Continued - The IGEMS Parent-Teacher Club contributed the additional funds to have Rick Chrustowski return to IGEMS for the Family Reading Fest that same evening. He led students and families in a "draw along." His knowledge and skills amazed the students, teachers, and families of IGEMS.