The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, September 24, 1999


Teaching team garners $40K grant

Carlisle's second-grade students will be following the Alaskan Iditarod sled dog race on their classroom computers and in the process, they will be learning to use the equipment as tools to gather, sort, evaluate and present information. Implementation of this project was made possible by the dilligent efforts of second-grade teachers Donna Clapp, Linda Clark, Valerie Marshall, Heather Swift, and Lynn Walker who, along with technology specialist David Mayall, were successful in their application for a $40,000 grant.

The idea for the project started almost two years ago when the teachers attended a workshop at the Abbot School in Westford, Clapp explained in an interview. Teachers there had already been given a grant to spread the use of technology in schools. The Westford program was based on the Iditerod.

The Carlisle second grade had been doing a unit on the Iditerod for several years already, but without much use of computers in the classroom. They saw this as an opportunity to learn from the Westford teachers how to use technology to enhance the unit. Over the next year they met with the Westford teachers several times.

Mayall explained that he applied to make Carlisle part of the Technology Curriculum Integration Leadership Program and Carlisle was accepted. He and the second-grade team also participated in a weeklong summer workshop to develop an action plan for integrating technology into the curriculum. Then, with the help and endorsement of the Westford group, Carlisle applied for a Technology Literacy Challenge Grant 4: Adopting Best Technology Practices. The funds come from the federal government through the state department of education.

The teachers learned of the award of the $40,000 grant just before school opened. Clapp reported that they were all very excited. The money will be used to purchase more computers for the classrooms as well as scanners, digital cameras and other accessories for creating multi-media presentations. The students will learn to use the Internet, looking at Iditerod sites as sources of information. They will also learn to analyze and present the information using the computers. The second grade classrooms will become models for the use of technology in the curriculum for the rest of the school.

1999 The Carlisle Mosquito