Deadline: August 12, 2016 (Pre-proposals due)
This annual grant program from the Melinda Gray Ardia Environmental Foundation supports the development of innovative classroom environmental curricula. Grants are available for developing, implementing or field testing various programs. All curricula must integrate field activities and classroom instruction, as well as engage students in problem solving and basic ecology learning. More details and a listing of past winners are available on the foundation's website.
Deadline: Interest Forms Available Now
Prize: One or two grants of $1,500 are available.
The Teach Earth program is a travel and expeditionary learning program for U.S.-based educators. Each year, the Earthwatch Institute selects teachers in a variety of subject areas to "work side by side with world-class scientists on field research expeditions around the world." The program is open to all educators, even educators without scientific backgrounds.
Deadline: August 1, 2016
Prize: Funding for travel and lodging are included.
The Mockingbird Foundation provides one-time grants to organizations that provide music education programming to students. Grants support a range of initiatives, including fostering creativity and supporting music education programs. Programs should provide programming to students 18 years old or younger.
Deadline: October 1, 2016
Prize: Grants range from $100 to $5,000.
Each year, the Toshiba America Foundation provides small, one-time grants to public and private school K-5 teachers in the U.S. The grants are available to support science and math classroom projects, and individuals and teams can apply for funding. Grants are available for project learning materials.
Prize: Grants are available up to $1,000.
Classroom pets make wonderful learning companions! Educators interested in funding a classroom pet should consider a Pets in the Classroom grant. They are available for K-8 teachers in public and private schools. Grants are "intended to support pets or aquariums in the classroom" and facilitate learning projects centered on caring for pets responsibly.
Prize: A variety of small one-time grants are available, including awards for supplies.
>> MORE: Get information on how to find grants.
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Contests and Awards
Deadline: October 14, 2016
The annual Global Teacher Prize was created to honor one outstanding educator who has made a significant contribution to their profession. The prize was first awarded in 2015, and it was created to bring awareness and recognition to the world's very best educators. Educators across the world can apply or be nominated. Applicants are judged on a variety of criteria, including impact in the classroom, contributions to the community, use of innovative teaching methods, and work with mentoring and coaching fellow educators.
Deadline: July 15, 2016
Prize: One educator receives a $1 million award; finalists also receive prizes and recognition.
The annual White House Student Film Festival is back for the third year. To participate, U.S. K-12 students can create short films in any genre (up to three minutes in length) that touch on this year's theme: The World I Want to Live In. Entries should not include any copyrighted material and must be uploaded to YouTube.
Deadline: Opening in July
Prize: Creators of some selected films may be invited to the White House to attend a screening.
Need funding to support a computer science learning program? The Google RISE Awards support "informal education organizations around the world" that promote computer science among K-12/pre-university youth. Google seeks applications from organizations that serve diverse populations, including girls, youth in low-income communities and minorities traditionally underrepresented in computer science fields.
Deadline: August 15, 2016
Prize: Average awards range from $10,000 to $25,000.
Here's one for the aspiring video game designers in your classrooms. The STEM Video Game Challenge, which was inspired by the President's Educate to Innovate Campaign, encourages middle and high school students "to work as individuals or in teams to design and make original, playable games or written game design documents about any subject." Judges evaluate games based on three game design criteria, and individuals or participating teams can design and build games, or just submit design documents in the design category. A variety of resources, including lesson plans to help teach game design concepts, are available online.
Deadline: August 19, 2016
Prize: Many prizes are available for students, including a cash award, mentoring opportunities, and lifetime access to Game Mechanic, among other prizes.
The Learning Network from The New York Times is encouraging students aged 13-19 years old to get engaged with the news this summer. From June 17 to August 19, the Learning Network will open a small essay contest for youth readers each Friday. To participate, students write a brief 250- to 300-word comment in the weekly thread that answers: What interested you most in The Times this week? Why?
Deadline: Ongoing until August 31, 2016
Prize: Each Tuesday, a winner's submission will be published on the blog.
This summer, fourth graders and their families have free access to any national parks, waters, and lands through the National Park Service Foundation's Every Kid in a Park program. To participate, students download a summer pass that is good until August 31. Plus, for fun end-of-year activities, the Activity Guides for teachers are designed to teach students about the parks, land conservation, and more.
Deadline: September 19, 2016
Prize: Students receive a pass to all National Park Service lands and areas that's good until August 31.
Each year, the American Library Association recognizes the country's best librarians with the I Love My Librarian Awards. People are encouraged to nominate a librarian that is making a positive impact in your community or school; nominators must write brief statements about the librarian and why they are perfect for the award.
Prize: Ten awards of $5,000 are available for librarians across the U.S., as well as a plaque and a travel stipend to an awards ceremony in New York City.
>> MORE: Get information about the latest contests and promotions for teachers in our Edutopia discussion group.
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MathScienceMusic.org, a new website from the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz and the NYU MusEDLab, features free resources to help teachers incorporate music in science and math lessons. The activities and apps are designed for all students, kindergarten through college. Subjects covered include geometry and physics, among many others, and all lessons teach students about the strong relationship between music and STEM learning.
Finding Your Seat on the Bus is one of 57 resources, created by the USC Shoah Foundation, included in the IWitness collection. These resources explore a number of topics, including tolerance, justice, family and standing up for others, and they feature primary source materials like text, video, poems, photos and more. Each activity is built around a video clip of testimony, and they complement a number of subjects, including English, history, and social studies.
Created by the Exploratorium, Science Snacks "are tabletop exhibits or explorations of natural phenomena that teachers or students can make using common, inexpensive, readily available materials." There are hundreds of hands-on activities in the collection, and they're created to be easily digested with a short photo/video intro, a materials list, helpful hints, and advice.
Produced by National History Day, Understanding Sacrifice is a "collection of videos, primary source, secondary sources, and lesson plans" that covers soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice in World War II.
How does math relate to Pixar animation? Khan Academy and Pixar recently released a fun, interactive lesson series called Pixar in a Box. Each lesson “demonstrates how a concept introduced in school is used for creative benefit at Pixar,” and there are lessons for all different grade levels. Teachers looking for more information should check out the Educator’s Guide, which provides examples and ideas for implementation.
Unlocking Life's Code is a new tool, created by the National Human Genome Research Institute, that enables students to explore "ethical and social questions surrounding genomic sequencing." The resource includes an online exhibit covering genomic sequencing technology, as well as discussion starters and information about the "growing involvement of genetics" in many areas of our lives.
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