Innovative Teaching Grants

To date, Smithville Education Foundation has granted over $30,000 in funding to teachers and staff to help our students. We appreciate all the donors and sponsors who have made this possible. Grants applications are accepted in the fall of each school year.

2020-21 grants

SEF grants almost $6,000 to smithville junior high instructors

Smithville Education Foundation's Jill Strube, Fran Hunter, and Leah Saunders surprised teachers at SJHS with acknowledgement of their grants being funded for the 2020-21 school year. The grants totaled $5,866.06!

Congratulations to Dianna King, Pam Cowan, Denise Miles, Jennifer Peterson, Tammy Davis, Kieran Gibson and Lisa Prihoda. The winners were also presented with edible arrangements by Jim Horton, Smithville Community Gardens.

Bucket drums for band

Band Director Dianna King requested and received funds to DIY 80 bucket drums, and to obtain drum sticks and drum music, to foster musical skills and flexibility of students in grades 6th through 8th in a COVID-safe manner. As Mrs. King stated, "Rhythm is at the core of all music," and these drums give students the foundation they need for future skills.

reading across the curriculum

Lead by Instructional Coach Denise Miles, the group of Valerie Rodriguez, Keiran Gibson, Tammy Davis, Patricia Rivers, William Nicks and Ashley Ramirez requested funds to purchase 30 subscriptions to Science World magazine to support the subject and literacy. The magazine also came with digital subscriptions for teachers and virtual learners with high interest, current articles that engage students in reading and higher order skills.

Make-ing sjh fun and beautiful

Librarian Jennifer Peterson asked for a Cricut cutting machine along with supplies to enhance the new library makerspace area for student and teacher use. They will hold monthly "makes" where students, clubs and staff can come and learn how to "get their creative juices flowing through various projects."

behavior support services furniture

Special Education Teacher Pam Cowan, with other participating teachers Shelly Huerta, Joseph Nix and Leah Steinbrink, requested specialized furniture for the "cool-down" room which is soft and light to prevent injuries in time of crisis. These desks and chairs would also be used by all students in the alternative academics hallway and general education who receive behavior support services.

eye of the tiger

Teacher Tammy Davis, with participating applicant Denise Miles, requested several cameras for use by yearbook sponsor to improve the quality of images included in the yearly campus yearbook, which is a bonus for all families who purchase one. Students will also receive instructions on use as well as the basics of photography.

explore learning gizmos

7th Grade Science Teacher Kieran Gibson requested a subscription for her students to Explore Learning Gizmos to illustrate and model aspects of science that she couldn't realistically introduce into the classroom. These simulations are math and science based that power inquire and understanding from students. The simulations will be introduced into all levels of learning at the junior high.

painting without a twist

SJHS Art Teacher Lisa Prihoda requested funds for materials needed for step-by-step paint lessons on stretched canvas. The lessons teach technique, drawing skills, properties of chalk and acrylic paints, and meets the TEKS guidelines for Art 6th, 7th and 8th grades.