Two Exeter schools awarded grants for special academic projects
Increasing the variety of reading material available to students was a popular goal among projects that sought funding this year from Berks County Community Foundation’s annual classroom mini-grant program.
The Berks County Community Foundation, a nonprofit corporation that aims to improve quality of life in Berks County through the use of charitable funds, awarded $2,300 to six projects in four school districts
As part of the grants, Exeter Township School District was awarded money for projects at Reiffton School and the high school.
A “paper circuits” program will allow 125 fifth- and sixth-grade students at Reiffton School to incorporate engineering into English and social studies classes through the use of a kit.
The paper circuits are electronic circuits built from copper foil tape, LED (light emitting diode) stickers, and batteries. The circuit is built by taping components in the correct sequence.
Paper circuits enhance existing projects by, for example, adding an electronic design component to a social studies map of a geographic region.
Students will use STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics skills) to incorporate a circuit into their work and troubleshoot until it functions properly. The project received $500 from the Berks County Association of School Retirees Scholarship and Grant Fund at the Community Foundation.
Additional funding was awarded to Exeter Township High School that will provide new selections to ninth-grade students who have struggled to find books that engage them. This initiative received $265 from the Ben Franklin Trust Fund of the Community Foundation.
Other county school projects included:
- Reading School District, Northeast Middle School, $500 towards musical production skills training
- Hamburg Area School District, Hamburg Area Middle School, $500 towards individual choice learning programs for eighth-graders
- Hamburg Area School District, Hamburg Area High School, $265 towards choice-based reading programs for seniors
- Schuylkill Valley School District, Schuylkill Valley Elementary School, $270 towards a take-home book bag program for kindergartners
The classroom mini-grant program will next accept applications November 1, with a deadline of December 15. Applications are accepted at bccfgrants.academicworks.com.
The mini-grant program has provided about $50,000 in grants across Berks County. The program accepts donations at https://bccf.org/donate/