As winter winded down, teachers from Augusta Independent filed for the opportunity to receive a $2,000 classroom level grant from the R.C. Durr Foundation. The foundation encourages rural high schools in northern Kentucky to apply for technology grants that will help high schools improve instruction and to prepare students with the skills needed in 21st Century careers.
Chris Mason, Augusta’s middle school and high school science instructor, was awarded $2,000 for technical equipment in his science lab. His grant allows for the purchase of scientific interfaces that allow students to use technological probeware in the classroom. In addition, AHS can purchase additional electronic balances to compensate for aged triple beam balances. “Using sensors that we currently own, the interface is used to collect sensor data with built-in graphing and analysis applications,” Mason said. “The interface has a high-resolution touch screen allowing for application ease. Think of the interface as an iPad for science. With the additional balances, we will have enough for a classroom set.”
Spanish teacher Dan Hildebrand applied for Chromebooks for his foreign language classroom. The $2,000 award will allow him to purchase nine Chromebooks. “The research that I have been doing in foreign language instruction stresses the importance of immersion in a language and comprehensible input” Hildebrand explained. “Having devices and Internet access available for my students will make such immersion and input a possibility for my students.”
Finally, a $2,000 grant was submitted for audio and presentation equipment. The $2,000 awarded allowed for the purchase of a dual wireless microphone system with 2 handheld wireless mics and two clip-on wireless mics, an 8-channel audio mixer, 2 15-inch portable speakers, and a spotlight. “This equipment can be beneficial not only to our students, but also have a lot of practical uses,” Technology Director Tim Litteral stated. “We have a lot of presentations and assemblies in the gym where being able to use two wireless mics at a time will be helpful. Our current system only allows us to use one at a time. Also, with the portable equipment, if we need to have audio equipment for presentations in the cafeteria, or if we have events off-campus, we now have our own equipment for that. Also, with our drama program ramping back up, they can use this additional equipment.”
Some of the new equipment is already in place, but what is not will be ready for the start of the 2017 school year.