Teacher Mini Grants 2011

Every year FLENJ offers minigrants for teachers to implement innovative projects for their classrooms and for their schools. These grants provide financial support for unique and creative proposals that have a direct impact on the development of language skills in the classroom. Increasingly technology is taking center stage in the proposals. The following are the winners and their projects for 2011:

Kristi Delfino currently teaches Spanish and French at Whippany Park/Hanover Park High School. Through the purchase of Flip video cameras and Flip Action tripods, her students will be able to share aspects of daily life with “keypals.” They will exchange videos and cultural products, will speak with native speakers via Skype, will post forum discussions, and will view videos from their “keypals.”

Yaritza Albarrán, a Spanish teacher at South Plainfield High School, will purchase webcams with her grant money. Her Spanish I students will create a virtual tour of their school, which will be posted on the class wiki and shared with epals in Spanish-speaking countries. In turn, they will view virtual tours of the schools of their epals, thus learning about the practices and perspectives these countries.

Joan Rosenberg, a K-5 teacher of Spanish at the Wyoming School in Millburn, has the unique opportunity to go to Cuba with a group called “Cuba for Educators.” There she will meet with students and teachers, and will explore Cuban culture. Her experiences will culminate in movies and power point presentations for her Spanish classes and for her district and community.

Maria Dessipris teaches K-5 Spanish at the Redwood Elementary School in West Orange. She will be creating “magic boxes” for each of the Spanish-speaking countries that students can check out of the library to take home and explore. The boxes will contain props, maps, and learning scenario worksheets that the students can complete on their own.

FLENJ is pleased to be able to reward the initiatives of our members and to provide much needed assets for the purchase of materials that enhance the world language programs in New Jersey schools. Congratulations to all of the recipients.