STEM Hub awards teacher grants

The Columbia Gorge STEM Hub recently announced the recipients of the winter 2017-18 STEM Educator Microgrants. These ideas for innovation in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) were selected by committee from a competitive pool. Winning proposals demonstrated a focus on equity, expanding STEM or STEAM (STEM plus Arts) opportunities, cost effectiveness, and potential for lasting impact:

• Flipped Elementary Classroom — Nancy Malitz, Mosier Community School

• Physics of Sound Fieldtrip — Ramona Hartwood, Colonel Wright Elementary School

• Protobot Mini Robot Lesson Development — Lu Seapy, Wasco County 4-H

• STEAM Maker in Residence — Dylan McManus, The Dalles-Wasco County Library

• SECRETS Outdoor Education — Steve Chance, Colonel Wright Elementary School

• Connecting the Classroom to the Environment: Columbia Gorge Field Biology — Sarah Lyon, Hood River Alternative High School

• Women in STEM Lunch Club — Amy Foley, Hood River Valley High School

• OMSI School Science Trip — Leanne Haifley, Cascade Locks Elementary

The grant committee was impressed by the high quality of the applications and the diversity of ideas shared for broadening the reach of STEM opportunities, according to Hub Coordinator Christy Christopher.

For instance, Lyon of Hood River Alternative School explained that “our curiosity and joy of learning is ignited sometimes just by changing the lens we look through” and that the microscopes and binoculars she will purchase with the funds will “expose students to a sense of place that they may not have had access to without those tools.”

McManus of The Dalles-Wasco County Library explained that “this (STEAM Maker) Residency will offer students an opportunity to see a new way of considering STEM practices, in that they will experience practical applications of how things like geometry, structural engineering, and science are applied during the construction of a physical art piece.”

These grants are made possible by the Columbia Gorge STEM Hub, which is funded by the Oregon Department of Education. The hub partners with local schools, businesses, and non-profits to expand STEM opportunities for all students in the Columbia River Gorge. Find out about the STEM Hub, join the coalition, or make a donation to support similar grants by visiting

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