The Friends of Moffat County Education group is seeking to help local students in kindergarten through second grade get a jump on their education through technology.
What initially began as a grant request to FMCE from kindergarten, first- and second-grade teachers at Sunset Elementary School, has turned into a district wide initiative to purchase iPads for students in kindergarten through second grade.
“The purpose of the project, the reason to provide iPads in the classroom is to help struggling students with literacy, math and reading fluency,” said Chris Jones, president of FMCE.
Jones said students would have the opportunity to do a book trailer project, where kids read a book and write a review that can be accessed online by their peers, as well as a local history project for second graders.
Second graders would work with museums to create videos and interview community members to create a living history though videos for others to access online.
Sunset teachers originally requested 30 iPads to rotate between the three grades, but Jones said after meeting and discussing with other schools their goal has shifted district wide, requiring 120 iPads to provide each K-2 with 30 iPads.
Jones said he estimates the total cost would be around $64,000.
“When we initially had the grant we started raising money for just Sunset as a pilot,” Jones said. “Now that we’re seeing more interest we’re definitely trying to get there for the rest of the district.”
Raising some funds and receiving some private donations, Jones said it will have to be a grass roots fundraising effort which includes meeting with local businesses to talk about the project and exploring other funding sources such as non-profits.
“We’d like to get at minimum the pilot started here in the next couple months,” Jones said. “If possible we’d like to get all of them going.”
Expressing his belief that children in kindergarten through second are at very critical developmental ages, Jones said he thinks helping with reading and math at that age will help stymie future issues.
“It’s a very innovative program that these teachers created,” Jones said. “And the fact other teachers are excited and want to use it, that the purpose of FMCE, to help fund innovative teaching methods.”
Darian Warden can be reached at 875-1793 or firstname.lastname@example.org