"Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire."
- William Butler Yeats
In support of the teacher ingenuity so essential to creating curriculum-enhancing projects that benefit students, Achieve Hartford! annually sponsors a Teacher Support Program.
Like all of our work, the Teacher Support Program is aligned with Achieve Hartford!’s Theory of Reform and its goals, including:
~ A culture of high expectations in the school and community, including opportunities for teachers to implement creative ideas that challenge their students;
~ Effective teachers in every classroom, including enhanced curriculum materials, collaboration with colleagues, and professional development;
~ Family and community responsibility for education, including strategies for adding a family engagement dimension to the curriculum and encouraging projects or programs to continue at home; and
~ Strategies to address challenges created by poverty, by providing resources not otherwise available – and increasing students’ access to additional books and other learning materials.
The 2011-2012 Teacher Support Program
Achieve Hartford! grants to teachers this year will be directed toward effective, supplemental literacy projects in all subject areas in grades K-8.
A Win-Win for Students and Teachers
With many of Hartford’s students reading below grade level, Achieve Hartford! believes that programs designed to enhance literacy at the elementary level are critical to student achievement.
Moreover, successful project ideas developed by teachers can be models for other teachers.
Achieve Hartford! will highlight and publish successful ideas to promote effective classroom techniques. We recognize that teachers are key partners in creating improved student performance and closing the achievement gap; here’s what they are saying about the Teacher Support Program:
“It is not often that all of my students find a project that they can feel successful at doing. Because of the Achieve Hartford! grant, each and every one of my scholars was able to create his or her own story. Each and every one of them took away more knowledge about imaginative vocabulary and they found their “voice” in non-violent and creative folk tales. Students were exposed to a whole new genre of writing. Through the creative writing workshops, they were able to find their own voice as writers. I loved watching them grow through the entire experience and I learned as well to become a better teacher of writing.” – Lauren Rossi, Fourth Grade Teacher, West Middle School
“Purchasing a classroom listening center would not have been possible without the grant awarded from Achieve Hartford! There is without a doubt an increase in desire not only to read, but to read chapter books. Students in my classroom tend to pick up picture books or lower-level books rather than on-level chapter books. It has been a goal of mine as an upper elementary grade teacher to motivate my students to select a desirable chapter book and sustain focus while reading it. I have only purchased chapter books to go along with the center. Immediately upon delivery of the listening center my classroom was abuzz! Everyone wanted to use the center first. It was wonderful to witness such excitement!
Something else that I've noticed pertaining to student achievement is that my special education students who (continually) struggle with literacy, are the FIRST to ask me to go to the listening center each morning! They can't wait to open up the chapter books! Due to the center, they are feeling successful and no different than any of the other students. It is incredible to watch! Our classroom also works closely with the ABA classroom (students with autism). This listening center enables 8 students to be on at one time and I am able to have a wide range of abilities utilizing the machine at one time as well. This machine empowers students to learn via their strongest modality. I am deeply grateful to have been accepted as an Achieve Hartford! grant recipient. Thank you!” – Kimberly Daly, 4th grade, Clark Elementary School
“I am elated and honored at being a recipient of the Achieve Hartford! 2010 Teacher Grant Program. I can't begin to tell you how much it means to me that I will be able to provide my students and their families with additional materials that are geared toward their individual needs. As I indicated in my grant, this opportunity will promote literacy in the hearts of these children and their families. I look forward to sharing this program with teachers from other schools.
In this day and age, we all know the economic devastation that many people are facing. This is especially true for school districts. Your monetary donation is truly a blessing and on behalf of the students at Clark Elementary School, the school community, their families and myself, I thank you so much for your generous gift.” – Susan Fuchs, Clark Elementary School
Kinsella parents and students ...
Grant awardee Susan Fuchs (at podium)
2010 Teacher of the Year Corinne Clark, of Clark School
West Middle School science activity