New ideas, coming to a classroom near you
Check out the projects that earned teachers funding in the latest round of Public Schools Foundation of Tippecanoe County grants. Plus, LSC names ‘distinguished educators.’ And plenty of other reads
Thanks for support for Based in Lafayette today from Wabash River Cycle Club. On Saturday, Aug. 26, the Wabash River Ride will commence from Fort Ouiatenon and traverse routes into Fountain and Warren counties. Starting with a 16-mile "ride-for-all" and increasing in distance at 32-, 62- and 100-miles, there is something for everyone. With both paved and multi-terrain options for road cyclists and gravel riders, this bike tour has full supported re-supply stops, mobile support and a finisher's meal. With all of the options available, the Wabash River Ride is your adventure, your choice. Early Bird pricing of $35 ends May 31. Student discounts apply to those in college or are under 18-years-old. Find more information at www.wabashriverride.com
PUBLIC SCHOOLS FOUNDATION GRANTS: NEW IDEAS, COMING TO A CLASSROOM NEAR YOU
In the hectic, final days of the school year, a round of fresh grants from the Public Schools Foundation of Tippecanoe County is great reminder that teachers are plugging away with innovative ideas heading into the next year.
That’s the way it was Wednesday afternoon at Rush Pavilion in Lafayette’s Columbian Park, when the foundation awarded a combined $15,357 in Seeds for Excellence grants for nine, teacher-nominated projects in LSC, TSC and West Lafayette schools.
“This is the best part of the whole job,” Andrea Amato, part of the foundation’s grant committee, said Wednesday, during one of two rounds of awards the Public Schools Foundation hosts each year. “All these proposals sound amazing, and I wish I’d had them when I was a student.”
Among them was Cole Elementary teacher Jennifer Tilley’s plan to bring chickens to the TSC grade school near Stockwell. She said the project started with what she called a small spark of an idea during a conversation with Cole Principal Mike Pinto that “blew up into a whole thing” involving a three-wheeled bike to haul feed, getting McCutcheon High School engineering and carpentry students to build a coop and building curriculum for Cole students around economics, life cycles and tending to – and even reading around – the chickens. Her project, “Cooped Up Outside: Raising Caring Citizens One Chicken at a Time,” received $2,000 from the foundation.
Kristen Burger, Wea Ridge Elementary, “Setting Up for Success:” Wea Ridge this year started an after school intramural program for elementary students with basketball and dance. An $1,849 grant will go toward nets, balls, carts and other equipment for volleyball intramurals next year.
Ana Ave, Edgelea Elementary, “We’re All Works of Art:” Ave, Edgelea’s principal, said a $1,960 grant would help turn the LSC elementary’s hallways into museum-like galleries, to familiarize students with classic pieces of art.
Laura Falk, all three West Lafayette schools, “Mathemagicians:” Falk said the program would take teachers and math games into home settings to help break down barriers about the rigors of math for students and families and build a stronger sense of the school community that might have been lost during the days of the pandemic. The foundation put $1,036 toward the project.
Susan Gran, Lafayette Jefferson High School, “Blowin’ in the Wind:” A $1,920 grant will go sensors and parts to build wind turbines to offer relevant applications to physics students as they tackle energy and electricity lessons.
Christina Schmidt, East Tipp Middle School, “Why Does Matter, Matter?” The $1,993 grant will help with materials and equipment to make drink can koozies, among other things, to learn about the properties and reactions among the elements. There’s way more to it than that, but she said the idea was to give students a deeper understanding of the Periodic Table.
Ashley Bergin, Oakland Elementary, “S.P.I.R.E. to Read:” An $1,848 grant will help with special education classroom materials for students who struggle with reading.
Annie Brandt, Klondike Middle School, “Civically Minded: Serving Others from the Heart:” Brandt said the program, funded by a $1,983 grant from the foundation, tied into the state’s new civics course coming next year for sixth-graders. The program will include students helping with a day of service for local nonprofit groups and then developing their own service project.
Shae Zimmerman, Battle Ground Elementary, “Where in the World Are Our Snacks? A Tasty Journal Around the Globe:” The $765 grant will go toward mystery snack boxes – “What best motivates kids?” Zimmerman asked. “Food.” – that are tied to particular regions and will be elements into researching other countries.
FOR MORE about the Public Schools Foundation of Tippecanoe County or to apply for a grant, go to psftc.org.
Speaking of teachers …
LSC NAMES DISTINGUISHED EDUCATORS: Lafayette School Corp. this week named Julie Koebcke, a special education teacher at Sunnyside Intermediate School, the district’s Distinguished Educator of the Year. She was selected from the distinguished educators named by fellow staff at each of LSC’s elementary, middle and high schools. Here’s a look:
Earhart Elementary: Jennifer Koch, kindergarten
Edgelea Elementary: Amy Freeman, multilingual teacher
Glen Acres Elementary: Alicia Waitkoff, fourth grade
Miami Elementary: Susan Bougher, multilingual teacher
Miller Elementary: Morgan O’Dell, second grade
Murdock Elementary: Julie Papineau, fourth grade
Oakland Elementary: Dru Newhart, third grade
Vinton Elementary: Christina Senasec, kindergarten
Sunnyside Intermediate School: Julie Koebcke, special education teacher
Tecumseh Junior High: Lisa Roetker, instructional coach
Jefferson High School: Heather Lerma-Keltner, special education teacher
Oakland Academy: Jesse King, science
Linnwood: Debbie Miteff, paraprofessional
(Note: To see a similar list from Tippecanoe School Corp., released in April, here’s a link.)
TODAY’S A GOOD DAY TO SIGN UP FOR BASED IN LAFAYETTE. FREE AND FULL-RIDE SUBSCRIPTIONS ARE AVAILABLE HERE.
PURDUE TEAMS UP WITH BELGIAN SEMICONDUCTOR FIRM: Purdue added to its growing semiconductor portfolio Wednesday, with news that the university and the Indiana Economic Development Corp. came up with a five-year research and development deal with imec, a Belgium-based research company working in the field of semiconductor development and applications.
The partnership was unveiled by Purdue President Mung Chiang, Gov. Eric Holcomb, U.S. Sen. Todd Young, among others, during the SelectUSA Investment Summit, an annual event hosted by the U.S. Department of Commerce near Washington, D.C. Chiang called it ”a milestone for semiconductor collaboration between the U.S. and Europe.”
According to the university, the partnership includes a total $10 million investment from Purdue, the IEDC and imec. The university says an imec center will be in Purdue’s Discovery Park District.
Purdue already has jumped feet first into the semiconductor field in the past two years, with anticipation of a $1.8 billion SkyWater Technology semiconductor facility announced in 2022 for the Discovery Park District, an R&D partnership with Taiwan-based MediaTek Inc., the creation of a semiconductor degrees program, a partnership with Ivy Tech Community College for credential courses on semiconductor fabrication and other semiconductor and quantum-focused research.
FARMERS MARKETS, OPEN FOR THE SEASON: It’s May in Indiana, so you know what that means. Yeah, yeah, Indy 500, sure. But how about the local farmers markets?
Lafayette: Opening day of the season for the Lafayette Farmers Market will be Saturday, May 6. The market, on Fifth Street between Ferry and Columbia streets, will be open from 8 a.m.-12:30 p.m. each Saturday through Oct. 26. Greater Lafayette Commerce organizers were touting 59 vendors this year, with 14 new ones.
West Lafayette: The city-hosted West Lafayette Farmers Market opened Wednesday and will be open each week through October. The West Lafayette Farmers Market is open 3:30-7 p.m. at Cumberland Park, on Salisbury Street, between Cumberland Avenue and Kalberer Road. For a look at vendors, here’s the West Lafayette Farmers Market site.
Purdue University: The Purdue Farmers Market opens Thursday on Purdue’s Memorial Mall, with hours from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. each Thursday through Oct. 26.
FOOD FINDERS BLUE JEAN BALL: The 10th annual Blue Jean Ball, a fundraiser for Food Finders Food Bank, will be Saturday, May 6, at Beck Agricultural Center, 4550 U.S. 52 West in West Lafayette. Since 2013, the event has raised more than $750,000 for Food Finders, which distributes more than 12 million pounds of food annually to nearly 74,000 Hoosiers through the combined efforts of 100 partner agencies, meal programs and the food bank's own direct-service programs. For tickets, go to www.food-finders.org. An auction tied to the event is live now, too, by using this link.
NAME THE (FUTURE) PUPS AT WOLF PARK: So, there are no puppies right now at Wolf Park near Battle Ground. But the site is preparing for a next generation. The research center has floated seven possible names – Carson, Clay, Cricket, Delilah, Faolán, Genesis and Greta – for the next generation at the park. Here’s the catch: Wolf Park visitors are being asked to vote for their favorites in a fundraiser that puts dollars behind each vote. Karah Rawlings, Wolf Park’s executive director, said in a release: “It has been six years since Wolf Park has had puppies, so everyone is excited to see the next generation. We don’t take the acquisition of new animals lightly – each is carefully considered to ensure the best outcomes for them and our existing animals. New puppies will allow us to continue to learn from these animals so that we can continue to teach about and advocate for their wild counterparts. Helping name future Wolf Park puppies is a great way to support our programs.” To check out the fundraiser and vote for a name, go to: https://bit.ly/NameTheWolfPuppies
OTHER READS …
The murder trial of Nike Haynie, accused of the 2020 stabbing death of Marc Sherwood in his Lafayette home, continued Wednesday in Tippecanoe Circuit Court with Haynie taking the stand with his contention that he’d done it in self-defense. Purdue Exponent reporter Seth Nelson had this report from Wednesday’s testimony in a trial expected to wrap up Thursday: “‘Unreliable narrator’: Third day of murder trial asks whether alleged killer is insane.”
Long expected to make the move, Jennifer McCormick, elected as a Republican in 2016 as Indiana’s state schools superintendent, formally announced her bid to run for governor as a Democrat in 2024. She joins a race that already features a high-profile campaign on the Republican side, featuring Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch, U.S. Senator Mike Braun and Fort Wayne businessman Eric Doden. “I know what I’m up against.” McCormick told AP reporter Tom Davies. Here’s Davies’ report: “Ex-Indiana schools chief McCormick enters governor’s race.”
Indiana Capital Chronicle reporter Casey Smith broke down how the two-year state budget the General Assembly finalized last week would be a substantial boost to charter schools through increased per-student funding. Here’s the story: “Indiana taxpayers will send millions more to charter schools in new state budget.”
Thanks, again, for support for today’s edition from Wabash River Cycle Club, presenting the Wabash River Ride on Saturday, Aug. 26. To register, with early-bird pricing, go to: www.wabashriverride.com
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