Cut to the Common Core, Make Reading Relevant, Engage Parents & More
"Winning" Funding Finds
Curated, Current Funding Opportunities
GetEdFunding is a free and fresh website sponsored by CDW•G to help educators and institutions find the funds they need in order to supplement their already stretched budgets. GetEdFunding hosts a collection of more than 2,900 (and growing) grants and other funding opportunities culled from federal, state, regional and community sources and available to public and private, preK–12 educators, schools and districts, higher education institutions and nonprofit organizations that work with them. GetEdFunding offers customized searches by six criteria, including 43 areas of focus, eight content areas and any of the 21st century themes and skills that support your curriculum. After registering on the site, you can save the grant opportunities of greatest interest and then return to them at any time. This rich resource of funding opportunities is expanded, updated and monitored daily.
Honor. Protect. Promote.
The American Immigration Council will award grants of $100 to $500 for the 2014–2015 school year to fund a limited number of projects that provide education about immigrants and immigration. The Council seeks to fund activities that are innovative and support the Council’s mission of promoting the benefits of immigrants to our nation. Applications for immigration-themed projects will be considered for all subjects, K–12, although special consideration will be given for proposals that relate to the following categories: innovative use of technology and multimedia, underrepresented minorities, community outreach and partnership with community-based organizations, math and science, and service-learning and civic engagement. Proposals that are classroom based will receive strong consideration as well as projects that can be replicated in other classrooms across the nation.
Deadlines: Semiannually—October 1, 2014, and June 30, 2015
See It. Solve It. Change It.
The Voto Latino Innovator’s Challenge is a competition for millennials, aged 18–34, who want to better the lives of Latinos by creating technological solutions to current challenges impacting Latino families, neighbors and communities at large. Issues that might be addressed include quality and affordable education, access to extracurricular activities and after-school programs, help for undocumented immigrant students, expansion of voting access to Latinos and more. Potential examples of new technology and digital tools include mobile apps, Mac apps, PC programs or Google Chrome apps; advocacy websites; online and mobile games; social networking platforms; community Internet kiosks; low-cost handheld devices; online badging systems or community access Internet hotspots. While an individual may be the primary applicant, the individual must be associated with an institution that will be the legal recipient of the award. Awards are made in three levels of support: Level 1 ($10,000–$25,000); Level 2 ($50,000–$75,000); and Level 3 ($75,000–$100,000).
Deadline: Applications/project statements due by 8 p.m. (ET) on October 15, 2014; see website for complete timeline
Portray. Affirm. Celebrate.
The Pura Belpré Award, established in 1996, is presented annually to a Latino/Latina writer and illustrator whose work best portrays, affirms and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an outstanding work of literature for children and youth. The award is co-sponsored by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), and The National Association to Promote Library & Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking (REFORMA), an ALA affiliate. The award is named after Pura Belpré, the first Latina librarian at the New York Public Library. As a children’s librarian, storyteller and author, she enriched the lives of Puerto Rican children in the United States through her pioneering work of preserving and disseminating Puerto Rican folklore. Librarians seeking great books for children and young people, while serving the growing needs of a young Hispanic population, will find a list of the best books among the award winners celebrating Latino authors and illustrators.
Deadline: December 31, 2014
Big-Value, No-Cost Resources
What to Spend. How to Save.
Fostering Financial Literacy in ESL Classrooms Using New Media Tools is a collection of free lessons provided by KQED Education in which students learn about managing money, banking, credit, debt, home financing and loans while practicing listening, reading, speaking and writing skills. With the integration of new media tools into the curriculum, educators will be able to engage ESL learners by making unfamiliar financial concepts as concrete as possible.
Cultural Migrations. Multiple Stories.
What were the experiences of Mexican Americans in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries? What challenges did they face? What communities, institutions and culture did they create? What records and documents were left of their lives, and what were some reasons for the gaps in the records? There is no single Mexican American story, but rather multiple ones that primary sources can help illuminate. Start with the Library of Congress’s free downloadable Teacher’s Guide, Mexican American Migrations and Communities, and Primary Source Set, for historical context, teaching suggestions, links to online resources and more. The Library of Congress also provides a free Primary Source Analysis Tool for Students as well as Teacher’s Guides for helping students analyze the primary sources, guiding them toward higher-order thinking and building their critical thinking and analysis skills.
Culturally Relevant. Linguistically Appropriate.
Project COPELLS is a research and development project implemented by University of Oregon’s Center for Advanced Technology in Education (CATE) and the Instituto Latinamericano de la Communicación Educativa (ILCE). ILCE is a division of the Department of Education in Mexico that designs relevant collaborative online projects (COPs) for K–12 students. Project COPELLS has selected, translated and enhanced culturally relevant and linguistically appropriate COPs designed by ILCE to teach science to middle school, Spanish-speaking English language learners. These COPs are aligned to National Science Education Standards and enhanced with supportive resources (etext supports) that promote bilingual use of the materials and increase science literacy in both English and Spanish. Specific etext supports include alternative text, audio and video definitions of terms, translations and enhanced illustrations that become available only when clicked to open by the reader. The project’s two major goals are to facilitate and improve science content-area learning for Spanish-speaking ELLs and to facilitate their acquisition of Academic English while learning science content. Presently two collaborative projects are available online for free: What Your Body Needs, a 10-week life science unit that focuses on cells and body systems, and Let’s Help Our Environment, a 10-week life science unit that focuses on ecology. The COPELLS project combines collaboration, technology and project-based learning (PBL) to give students experiences that will help them learn science concepts they will carry with them throughout their lives.
Converse. Collaborate. Discover American Culture.
The US Department of State has produced Trace Effects, a 3-D open-world adventure game that aims to teach American English as a second language. Players take the role of Trace, a university student who, after accidentally time traveling to the present, is trying to return to the year 2035. His trip, divided into seven chapters, takes him across the United States to places such as New Orleans, the Grand Canyon, New York City, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. The player walks around conversing with other characters to gather information, collect items and complete quests. Dialogue is simple and clean, and characters speak clearly. Players literally pick up vocabulary as they go: words as well as items are scattered across the environment for players to find. To put new vocabulary into practice, players use verbs and items from their inventory to fill in blanks and make short phrases (for example, “show” the “student ID”), which carry out actions that allow them to progress through quests. Helpful features for English learners include dialogue logs for reviewing previous conversations and the ability to replay audio from spoken lines. Designed for students aged 12 to 16, Trace Effects also comes with a free teacher’s manual and 28 practice activities to review grammar and vocabulary. It also has four free multiplayer language games.
Professional Learning Plus
Look for Clues. Remove the Mystery.
On October 7, 2014, from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. (ET), Amazing Resources for Educators and edWeb.net will co-host a free webinar entitled “Identifying Autism Spectrum Disorder at Any Age: Keeping Students from Slipping Through the Cracks,” sponsored by the Southwest Autism Research & Research Center (SARRC). In the webinar, the presenter will describe the signs to look for in your students as well as the critical importance of appropriate identification. The interactive session will help participants identify the subtle signs of autism spectrum disorder, utilizing the free tools available through SARRC’s ThinkAsperger’s website. The presenter will also field participants’ questions throughout the webinar.
Build Connections. Work Together.
Education Connections is an online network of teachers, sponsored by the College of Education at the University of Oregon and managed by the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL), which provides access to a wide range of free online resources and information for educators working with English learners. Join the Education Connections community for easy online access to free webinars, teacher-created videos and lesson plans, and a community of educators working together to implement standards-based instruction across the country.
Increase Dialogue. Enrich Professional Growth.
Working closely with the Latino After School Initiative (LASI), Boston Children’s Museum developed a guide to help Out-of-School Time (OST) staff better support English language learners at their sites. As the ELL and bilingual student populations steadily increase at both state and national levels, the museum and LASI envision this free guide serving as a platform for enriching professional growth and relevant dialogue for a wide spectrum of OST staff and administrators.
SPOTLIGHT! On ESL in the Common-Core Era
As public schools move headlong into teaching new, more rigorous standards in reading, math and science, English-as-a-second-language teachers must become more involved in the central enterprise of teaching and supporting academic content for ELL students than has traditionally been the case. A new report entitled “Changes in the Expertise of ESL Professionals: Knowledge and Action in the Era of New Standards” argues that coursework in applied linguistics, second-language acquisition and methods for teaching second-language learners in the areas of reading, writing, listening and speaking will no longer be enough. For example, ESL teachers need to understand the language and language practices that are specific to different subject areas and disciplines. The report was published by TESOL in March 2014.
Multiple Languages. Common Goals.
Common Core Standards for English Language Learners, a section of the Colorín Colorado website, offers ideas and materials, including classroom videos, teacher interviews and bilingual parent tips. Also find a free glossary of 25 words and phrases that have meanings unique to the Common Core English Language Arts Standards, from Scholastic.
Receptive Language. Expressive Language.
The Fun With Directions app measures receptive language learning by providing a fun and engaging way for English learners to practice listening, following directions, working memory and auditory processing of language. Students respond to simple oral directions and prompts, such as “Touch the cat,” which become increasingly more complex—for example, “Give the girl something that she can throw” or “Give the boy without a hat or glasses something round that grows on trees and can be red or green.” As an added bonus, the app includes optional “Superstar Directions,” which allow additional practice for remembering (“What did you have to do?”) but also expressive language. The student’s response is recorded and played back. Superstar Directions can be set to a variety of intervals or turned off completely. The prompts can be differentiated based on English language development levels, so the app can be used as a formative assessment as well as a practice activity.
Mobile Device: iPad
Cost: Free until September 15, 2014
Reading While Listening
iDaily Pro HD is an innovative app that turns English language news (Voice of America Special and Standard English), updated daily, into lessons in listening, grammar and sentence structure. Sentences are highlighted at the places where the audio is playing. By tapping a sentence, students can hear it again. If they encounter a word they don’t know, students simply tap and hold to see the explanation in the embedded dictionary. They can also link the word to whichever online dictionaries they like in the Settings. In addition, students can create a customized wordbook by saving words and phrases that need clarifying.
Mobile Device: iPad
Start the Conversation
The Conversation English app lets English learners practice and improve their English on the go. The app includes 20 full conversational English lessons, each of which includes tasks in five skill areas: Conversation Listening, Conversation Reading, Comprehension, Vocabulary and Sentence Completion. An Idiom Dictionary with Audio Pronunciation is also included.
Mobile Devices: iPad, iPhone, iPod touch
Linguistically, Visually—Mathematically Powerful
Math Vocabulary Cards, an app created by The Math Learning Center, helps ESL students deepen their conceptual understanding of key terms in mathematics. Each card features three sections: a math term, a representative example or model and a concise definition. Each section can be hidden or revealed, providing multiple options for practice. The vocabulary cards can be selected individually or by category and switched seamlessly between English and Spanish. Math Vocabulary Cards are ideal for elementary classrooms and other learning environments.
Mobile Devices: iOS; iPad, iPhone
Our Journeys. Our Stories.
Over the years, many Latinos have immigrated to the United States. Whether their experiences are told firsthand or handed down from parents and grandparents, they seek to communicate the importance of their journeys and their culture. Powerful, provocative and contemplative, the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s ¡del Corazón! Latino Voices in American Art exhibit features Latino artists who speak through their artworks. Each work expresses the rich and varied experience of being Latino in the United States. ¡del Corazón! goes behind the scenes and uses photographs, videos and other resources to reveal the artists and their works. Students can explore each section to learn how they express universal cultural experiences. The exhibit is accessible in English and Spanish.
Across the Americas
An interactive online exhibition created by the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, Música del Pueblo features a mural that celebrates the many strands of Latin music across the Americas. Students can click on any area of the mural to hear the music and meet the musicians. The virtual exhibit is accessible in English and Spanish.
Language and Cultural Assets
Padres Comprometidos is a parent-engagement program that aims to foster a strong connection between schools and parents. To this end, the Padres Comprometidos program builds the capacity of Latino parents to acquire the skills they need in order to effectively engage with schools and play a leading role in preparing their children for college. The program addresses language and culture as assets—rather than obstacles—upon which skills, confidence and ultimately empowerment are built. The bilingual Padres Comprometidos curriculum has been designed to reach, in particular, those parents who are typically not connected to schools or preschools as a result of linguistic and cultural differences, economic background, negative perceptions about school or lack of knowledge about how to become involved. Three editions of the Padres Comprometidos curriculum are available: Preschool, Elementary and Secondary. Each edition was piloted with National Council of La Raza’s (NCLR) large network of Latino-serving educational institutions and as part of the parent outreach programs run by community-based organizations. The parents that the program reaches are generally Spanish-speaking, first- and second-generation immigrants who came to the US predominantly from Mexico and Central America.
« Welcome to Our Global Community – September 9, 2014
· Look for Clues. Remove the Mystery.
· Build Connections. Work Together.
· Increase Dialogue. Enrich Professional Growth.
· SPOTLIGHT! On ESL in the Common-Core Era
· Multiple Languages. Common Goals.