The Foundation's awards staff grants in the Fall and Winter each year. Typically grants help fund innovative educational programs or enriching experiences for students. Some have been designed to build links with and support from community groups, such as senior centers or Auburn Hills library. The Foundation has awarded 35 grants in the past 5 years, reaching all grade levels and buildings.
These grants support innovative educational programs and encourage teachers and other staff members to explore creative approaches to learning.
The Reid Family Foundation is a great partner to the Avondale Education Foundation (AEF), and a wonderful supporter of Avondale Schools. This year the Reid Family sponsored several programs including the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People Leadership series which was started at the Meadows Upper Elementary School and will spread to all the elementary schools next year. They also sponsor Camp Invention, a hands on summer learning experience; a robotic development program for the High School; and a professional learning center the "Reid Family Center for Literacy Development and Teacher Leadership" located in Auburn Elementary, dedicated to enhancing the early learning and reading skills.
At the end of this year they awarded a $2,500 scholarship to Bradley Lowe. The AEF salutes the Reid Family Foundation for their support of Avondale teachers and students!
Vray, photo realistic 3-D image software.
This technology allows students to produce state of the art graphics. Purchase 15 licenses which will allow students using “Sketch up” software print photos using Vray software.
Andy Maurer, High School
Start up money to develop a choir library for Avondale Middle School and High School.
Kevin Cornwell, Choir Director
To The Incredible Avondale Education Foundation,
On behalf of Mrs. Weaver's and Mrs. Huhtasaari's classes at Avondale Middle School, we would all like to thank you for our new Dream Chairs. Our new butterfly reading chairs are in many ways more than we expected.
Our chairs are to be used as a comfortable place to choose reading as a free time reward choice. I had hoped that we would see students just reading a little bit more, but then the surprises began. Our very first was a 7th grader who said "I really don't like to read. I just mostly like to play video games." Well, he was the first student pick up a book and read in one of our new chairs! And here is the kicker...he has read for 10-15 minutes EVERY DAY SINCE THE CHAIRS ARRIVED!!!
The impact of your charitable gift has just begun. 3-4 students every day choose to read in our new Dream Chairs. The minutes are adding up to hours and we are only in our second week. I asked the students to write down what they are reading and here is a short list so far: Guinness Book of World Records, a cookbook, science books, nature books and even a Twilight novel or two! The students are realizing that reading is a rewarding activity in and of itself. Mission accomplished.
In the beginning, we had hoped to buy one chair, but we were able to purchase three with the grant money!!! They are well constructed and have monarch butterflies painted on in orange and yellow acrylic. One of our students in the attached photo said "Hey, these chairs are so special that we should actually charge people to sit in them!" *
We are learning about setting goals and working towards them. We have each defined our dreams, needs and wants. I shared this dream with the students and discussed with them how I was turned down last year, but tried again and won. I believe in leading by example and that is exactly what happened. I dream. I read. They dream. They read. We all succeed!
I have shared our success with our special education students and the entire staff here at Avondale Middle School through word of mouth alone. Every student who uses our rooms are welcome to use the chairs to relax and read in when their work is complete. It is great to see a reward just waiting for you everyday.
We won't be requiring any further financial support for this program until the chairs wear out. So far the students are treating them with the careful respect that they deserve.
Thank you again for making just one of our little dreams come true.
Nan Alexandra Drinkard
7th Grade Para-Educator
Avondale Middle School
In-school Mentoring Program
Program targeting at-risk students and includes one-on-one mentoring to establish goals and review achievement in meeting academic benchmarks.
Yolanda Gomez, Mentoring Coordinator, Avondale Academy
Robotics Unit for the Industrial Design and Technology (IDT) Course
This project expands the current course curriculum to introduce students to the exciting world of robotics. It fosters an interest in engineering and technology; prepares students for future learning and use of robotics, and develops a basic level of understanding of robot construction using VEX robot kits.
William Ray, Teacher, Avondale High School
"7 Habits of Highly Effective People"
This is a leadership development program for teachers and students. The program will teach students the skills they need to succeed in the 21st century, including those skills identified as the 7 habits of highly effective people. The program provides students with the vision of themselves as leaders and as global citizens. Funding will support training materials and student data logs.
Laura Amatulli, Teacher, Meadow Upper Elementary
SEE/Total Communication Workshop
Children with limited verbal abilities and their families participate in 6 weeks of sessions to learn a new method of communication called Signing Exact English (SEE).
Cecilia Bator, Early Intervention, Speech and Special Services
3-D Studio Max
Kids access 10 Comprehensive Guides for 3-D Studio Max, a new graphic design, animation, and architecture computerized program available to students through the renewed/upgraded release of Autodesk. 3-D Studio Max offers the functionality to depict high-end photo-realistic graphics! Click on any of the pictures below to see an enlarged version.
Response to the 3-D Studio Max Dare to Dream Grant:
The textbooks purchased with the Dare to Dream Grant were used for approximately 10 weeks in the Computer Modeling and Animation class. With the help of this textbook, students were able to develop an understanding of the program 3DS Max Design. Students learned how to import models from other programs, develop and apply materials, adjust lighting and develop basic animations. Students were able to develop their projects to levels that far surpassed previous students of the same class.
I would like to continue to encourage the students to create more creative projects. Some of my students have an interest in video game design and marketing. I would also like to work with these students to help develop their portfolios for applying to colleges. The CMA class covered a portion of the textbook but there are additional advanced chapters within the textbook that can help students further their knowledge of 3DS Max Design.
One of the projects the students completed using the knowledge gained from the textbook was to develop a three-dimensional model of the Avondale Foundation logo. One of the student made models has been placed on Mr. Maurer's website to acknowledge the support of the Avondale Foundation. (http://avondale.mi.schoolwebpages.com/maurer)
Teacher: Andy Maurer, High School Teacher
Read Naturally: A Fluency and Competency Program
Thank you very much for all you've done for us!
Intergenerational Community Outreach
Elementary students travel to Sunrise Assisted Living three times during the school year. The focus of this learning experience is on intergenerational caring and sharing in the community. Click the photo (left) to enlarge.
Teacher: Barbara Granger, Deerfield Elementary Teacher
History of the Mitten
This project will help 3rd grade teachers make learning about Michigan fun. A real life learning experience — Kids actively engage in hands on learning by becoming native "e;tribes"e;, making materials sold by the British and the French years ago, and other fun learning projects!
Teachers: Signe Millerd, Linda Maniago, Mary Kay Frank, Auburn Elementary Teachers
Teacher Lab Gift Bags
Support for the materials needed in professional development training program for elementary teachers. We sponsored shared learning books that will be reference materials to the teachers following the training.
Teacher: Marcia Hudson, Auburn Elementary Teacher