Two CJ STEMM Educators Awarded Grants

Two CJ STEMM (science, technology, engineering, math and medicine) educators were awarded grants totaling $2,000 this fall that will go toward enhancing the learning experience for students during the 2012-13 school year, and beyond.

Grant Winners

MAURA LEMON, SCIENCE TEACHER

Science teacher Maura Lemon won a $1,500 grant from the American Chemical Society (ACS). She is one of 105 applicants to win a 2012-13 ACS-Hach High School Chemistry Grant, which are awarded annually to high school educators to “support ideas that enhance classroom learning, foster student development and reveal the wonders of chemistry,” according to www.acs.org.

Funding from the grant was used to purchase 32 ActiVote Learner Response Systems, produced by Promethean. The system allows teachers to anonymously poll students electronically via wireless, hand-held devices. Lemon expects the new technology to impact approximately 140 CJ students enrolled across the school’s five chemistry courses.

“This [system] encourages greater student participation in the assessment and also provides the instructor with an accurate and immediate grasp of student understanding of the material,” Lemon wrote in her grant application.

“It is our goal to create classrooms where all students feel they can express their ideas and receive feedback tailored to their understanding.”

More than 400 U.S. high school chemistry teachers have received the ACS-Hach grant since its inception for the 2008-09 school year.

MEG DRAEGER, CJ STEMM COORDINATOR

Meg Draeger has been selected to receive a $500 Innovative Teaching / STEM Grant by the Miami Valley branch of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati’s Catholic Schools Office. The school's CJ STEMM Coordinator was one of 18 applicants chosen from 16 different schools, to receive funding for her proposal, titled ‘Toys for God’s Kids.’

The goal is to build and distribute handmade wooden toys for children in need across the world. The service initiative will be the school’s first ongoing STEMM-focused ministry project, said Draeger, and was inspired by the efforts of the national Toys for God’s Kids organization, headquartered in Colorado.

“The project will provide a context for educating our students about the work of industrial, manufacturing and quality engineers,” she said. Grant money will be used to create a fully-equipped, student-staffed workshop led by “CJ production team leaders” for designing and producing the cars.

Learn more about Toys for God’s Kids by visiting its Web site, www.toysforgodskids.com. 

Award-winning Innovative Teaching Grant projects will be displayed, and applicants will receive certificates, at the annual Teacher Recognition Banquet on May 7, 2013, at Kettering’s Presidential Banquet Center.

Did You Know?

PROJECT LEAD THE WAY ANNOUNCES "UNPRECEDENTED GROWTH"
CJ remains near the top of an elite and growing class of United States high schools offering STEMM education through Project Lead the Way (PLTW) – the nation’s largest and leading provider of the curriculum – according to statistics released by the non-profit organization.

CJ has offered PLTW’s innovative and rigorous biomedical science and engineering programs since 2008-09, and became the first Catholic high school in the country to earn dual certification in June 2011. On Oct. 15, PLTW officials released national numbers for the 2012-13 school year, announcing a 20 percent increase in programming.

Of the 5,211 total programs located in all 50 states;

CJ remains the only dually certified Catholic high school in Ohio, and one of just two nationwide (the other being St. Thomas More High School in Milwaukee, Wisc.), and

CJ is one of two schools in the Miami Valley – and one of just 10 in the state – to hold dual certification among the nearly 300 Ohio schools offering PLTW curriculum.

In the organization’s October release, PLTW President and CEO Vince Bertram commended schools and districts that have adopted STEM educational programs.

"America is facing a crisis. Education must prepare students for the global economy by equipping them with the knowledge and skills they need to meet the projected job growth in STEM-related fields. Project Lead the Way is the solution to this problem, and it works,” stated Vince Bertram, PLTW President and CEO, in the release.

CJ offers four years of biomedical science and engineering coursework taught by four certified PLTW instructors. Students enrolled are guaranteed opportunities to learn from and work with area industry professionals and businesses, and may become eligible for college credit and admissions preference at more than 60 PLTW affiliate colleges and universities nationwide.

The PLTW biomedical sciences program at CJ is funded in part by Good Samaritan Hospital.

Locate a Project Lead the Way school at http://www.pltw.org/getting-started/school_locator.

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