Third grade teacher Emma Coulter says that some of her favorite school memories were when her whole class did novel studies together. She would like to offer her students the same opportunity. “We could do many fun activities with novel studies—like interactive notebooks, packets, group projects, and presentations,” said Coulter, who teaches at Harding Primary School in Monmouth.
A mini grant from the Monmouth and Roseville Community Funds will allow her to do just that. Charlotte’s Web, Holes, and How to Eat Fried Worms are a few of the books that will now be available for every student in Coulter’s class.
The two Community Funds have joined together to begin awarding mini grants of up to $500 to Monmouth-Roseville CUSD #238 teachers. In total, six mini grants were awarded to teachers in the district for the 2023-24 academic year.
Fourth grade Central Intermediate School teachers Teresa Nelson, Amy Nielsen, Kelli Ewing, Lana Stewart, and Brandi Collins grouped their application for additional books in their classrooms. Many of their students are below grade level and they don’t have many “just right” books to read independently. Their goal is to create a leveled library so students can have a greater variety of choices in what they read. Ashley Lublansky, a third-grade teacher at Harding, also plans to use her grant to buy additional independent reading books for her classroom.
Mindy Lipes and Juli Schaley of Harding will use grants to purchase flexible seating for their second and third grade classrooms. “Many times, my students are gathered at the front of the room on our classroom carpet during a lesson,” said Schley. “Oftentimes, there is participation where they are expected to write while sitting on the floor. This can be a challenge at times, as some students aren’t able to write with their book or clipboard in their lap.” The flexible seating will create a small desk in front of them as they sit on the carpet during instruction times. The desks will also be used for small group work in different areas of the classroom.
Emily Pickrell, a fourth through sixth grade music teacher at Central, will purchase Boomwhackers for her classes. “Boomwhackers offer a fun opportunity to create music and to perform as a whole class,” she says. Boomwackers are lightweight, hollow, color-coded, plastic tubes that are tuned to a musical pitch by length and will be used by all 300 students at the school to enforce musical concepts and to practice reading music.
The Monmouth and Roseville Community Funds were established by local residents and built with gifts from community members, businesses, service organizations, and other sources. The Community Funds are endowed funds of Galesburg Community Foundation and are guided by local advisory boards that are empowered to award grants that positively impact the Monmouth and Roseville communities.