PMEF Fall 2013 Approved Venture Grants are out!!!


Penn Manor Education Foundation

Approved Venture Grants, Fall 2013

13-30 Quiz Bowl Buzzer System

Marticville Middle School – 7th and 8th grades

The buzzer system will replace an aging system that does not work properly. The new buzzers, which will serve about 100 students over five years, will better prepare students for competition.


13-31 Upfront and Personal

Penn Manor High School – social studies

A subscription to Upfront and Personal, a current-events magazine written for a high school audience, will enhance classroom instruction by providing a timely resource for stimulating student discussion. A minimum of 100 students will have access to the magazines.


13-32 Millersville University Mentoring Program

Penn Manor High School

MU social work undergraduates will be paired with about 60 high school students considered at risk of academic failure. The MU mentors will meet regularly with the students to discuss goals, areas of need and difficulties. The objective is to improve the high school students’ school attendance and academic performance.


13-33 Jordan Sonnenblick Visit

Marticville and Manor Middle Schools – English and reading

Young adult fiction author Jodan Sonnenblick, whose books are part of the schools’ language arts curriculum, will visit both schools Dec. 5 and 6, making presentations and conducting writing workshops. The entire student body of both schools will be able to participate.


13-34 Gifted Education Career Seminars

Penn Manor High School – gifted program

Teachers will develop seminars designed to help gifted students explore careers and learn how to prepare for them based on their strengths and weaknesses. The seminars will rely on Kindle tablets loaded with “Career Planning for Gifted Students” software. The effort will involve 160 students over two years.


13-35 Leafsnap/iPad Mini/Environmental Science Project

Penn Manor High School – science department

An iPad Mini equipped with Leafsnap, an electronic field guide, will be purchased to help students study for AP science tests and assist students as they prepare to compete in the countywide Envirothon science competition. The project will involve about 60 students per year.


13-36 Topography/Geocaching Project

Penn Manor High School – science department

Two portable GPS units will be purchased so students can better study local topography and participate in local geocaching activities. The units will help students develop an understanding of local topography, reading topographic maps and the importance of topography in urban/rural planning. About 45 students per year will benefit.


13-37 Ropes Course

Penn Manor High School – Twilight School

The Twilight School alternative program will utilize a nearby ropes course to develop teamwork, cooperation, problem solving and effective communication among students. To participate, pupils will have to maintain good grades and regular attendance. About 25 students will benefit.


13-38 Telling Stories

Penn Manor High School – Video production classes

High-definition hard drive video cameras will be purchased to replace outdated analog tape cameras that are no longer supported by technology. The purchase will enable more students to participate in the classes, which have doubled in enrollment in two years. The cameras also will expand creative opportunities for about 50 students.


13-39 Building Community and Learning Through Multiple Intelligence

Penn Manor High School – Twilight School

The program will include guest speakers, field trips, service projects, career exploration programs and workshops, coupled with monthly mentoring of first-grade students in an urban environment. Speakers will discuss their education and career journeys, along with topics such as self-esteem and communication skills. About 15 students will participate.


13-40 iPod Nanos

Central Manor Elementary School – Emotional support/special education

Two iPod Nanos will be purchased for students to listen to Read Naturally stories, helping them develop fluency and comprehension. The devices also will be used to play music, which can have a calming effect on students, and as a motivator. Only students exhibiting positive behavior will be permitted to use the iPods. Nine students will benefit.


13-41 Using Puppets for Early Literature/Social Stories

Eshleman Elementary School – Kindergarten classes

Several puppets will be purchased to enhance classroom instruction and procedures. The puppets will help students with the retelling of stories, give clarity to understanding word syllables and enhance intonation and fluency. The puppets also will help model social stories to demonstrate appropriate behavior. About 40 students will benefit each year.


13-42 Seven Habits of Highly Effective Teens Book Study

 Central Manor Elementary School – Grade 6

A set of books will be purchased to help implement the “Seven Habits” into the daily curriculum. Sixth-graders will learn reading skills and complete discussions, skills work and reflection. They also will create a list of action items to help them transition to seventh grade. Initially, 20 students will participate.


13-43 Boomwhackers Project

 Manor Middle School – Grade 7

Several sets of Boomwhackers, which teach melodic concepts, will be purchased for use by students. The devices are less expensive and take up less room than keyboards, yet provide the same teaching opportunities. About 140 students will be included in the first year of the project.


13-44 Mobile Sensory Cart

Conestoga Elementary School – Kindergarten through grade six

A children’s wagon will be outfitted with sensory stimulus items, such as squeeze balls, putty and gel pads, for students to manipulate when needed. The materials are designed for students with autism, sensory integration disorder and other disorders who need a “sensory break” to prevent them from acting out and disrupting the educational process. About 15 percent of the school population is expected to use the materials.


13-45 Aevidum Awareness – Creating a Culture of Compassion

 Penn Manor High School

A digital still/video camera, poster board, markers, paint, T-shirts and other materials will be purchased for use by students in the Aevidum Club, which promotes positive mental health and educates the community about the warning signs of teenage depression. The goal is to prevent suicides. The materials will be used by more than 100 club members.


13-46 Fetal Pig Dissection Lab

Penn Manor High School – Grades 10-12  

Students in Honors Biology II classes, utilizing a Nexus 7 tablet with a dissection app, will dissect a pig with a partner over three days and will be assessed on their ability to identify structures and functions of fetal pigs and how they relate to class material. The project will impact 25-30 students per semester.


13-47 French Scholastic Magazines

Penn Manor High School – French I and II  

Students will benefit from utilizing current, topical and visually appealing French language magazines to supplement their textbooks, which contain cultural information that is 15 years out of date. About 75 students per year will use the magazines.


13-48 Circles 1 and 2 – Teaching Social Boundaries for Special Needs Students

Penn Manor High School – Life skills/special education students  

Ten DVDs, wall graphs, teachers’ guides and other materials will be purchased to provide special-needs students with formal training in social boundaries. The program will help students understand who they can trust and talk to and what to do if they experience more than just “friendship feelings” for another person. Initially, 15 students will benefit.


13-49 LEGO Education WeDo Kits

Eshleman, Letort and Conestoga Elementary Schools – Second grade applied engineering

     Fifteen WeDo kits will be purchased to enable second-grade students to explore the topics of simple machines, robotics and programming. The unit, which is closely aligned with STEM, will build in complexity, culminating with students using critical thinking skills to solve a design problem. All second-graders at the three schools will benefit.


13-50 LEGO Duplo Simple Machine Kits

Eshleman, Letort and Conestoga Elementary Schools – First grade applied engineering

     Fifteen Simple Machine kits will be purchased to enable first-grade students to explore the topics of simple machines, robotics and programming. The unit, which is closely aligned with STEM, will build in complexity, culminating with students using critical thinking skills to solve a design problem. All first-graders at the three schools will benefit.


13-51 Restoring Furniture

Penn Manor High School – Twilight School  

Students will be given money to purchase a used piece of furniture and will write a restoration plan, buy supplies at a hardware store and complete the restoration in four work sessions. The project is designed to familiarize them with woodworking and expose pupils to new tools, materials and processes. About 15 students will participate.


13-52 National High School Model United Nations

Penn Manor High School – Grades 9-12  

The grant will pay registration fees for students to participate in the National High School Model United Nations, to be held in New York City March 5-8, 2014. About 30 students will be impacted by the grant.


13-53 World Drumming Project

Marticville Middle School – Music Department  

The grant will be used to purchase several varieties of drums from around the world to be used in a new world drumming program that will expand the reach of the music department and teach students about world music and the power of drumming. About 300 studenst will benefit.


13-54 Enhanced Learning Through Document Cameras

Central Manor Elementary School – Grade 2  

The grant will fund cameras to enable any document, including student-generated work, to be shared with students on screen without the need for a scanner and a computer projection system. The project will impact about 200 students.


13-55 Catching Fire Lit Circle

Penn Manor High School – Twilight School  

Students will read the Hunger Games book “Catching Fire,” participate in literature circles and complete comprehension assignments in class. They will watch the film version of “Catching Fire” at a local theater before comparing the two versions of the story. The grant will fund the books and movie tickets.


13-56 Compass Mark programs

All district schools  

A variety of classroom presentations on such topics as effective communication, assertiveness, decision-making, bullying, anger management and transitions will supplement traditional counseling services at district schools. Nearly 500 students will be impacted.


PDF: Fall 13 VG FULL summaries 11-12-13

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