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                      Inspire . Collaborate . Connect

2013 Fall Grants

Lunchroom Art Gallery

Student art work reproduced and printed on large archival canvas will be displayed in the Hidden Oaks lunchroom to create a creative and innovative dining experience for staff and students.

Bridges Yearbook

This will be the second edition of Bridges yearbook, a yearbook created entirely by the students themselves! Bridges first yearbook was so well received, and the students and staff enjoyed it so much. It is important to continue to provide a publication of their unique memories and experiences during the school year.

Engaging Readers with a Good Nook

The more students read, the better readers they become. Some students are reluctant readers, often due to reading difficulties. E-books are an engaging book format that pulls readers in using the technology. E-books also make what a student is reading anonymous so that students feel comfortable reading books at their own level even if that is well below grade level.

Beginning Reading

We are looking to provide literature rich resources for all of our readers, in order to do that we are working to expand the literature choices for our very young readers. All three kindergarten classes will be adding these resources to their classrooms for students to use in their reading skill development.

Audiobooks for Newberry Titles

To provide a library of audiobooks with CD players so our struggling readers can access quality literature, increase their fluency, and successfully complete the fifth grade Newberry projects.

Understanding my Friends with Autism

Autism Atlas’s Understanding My Friends With Autism program is an interactive video presentation with the objective of helping neurotypical youth understand some of the challenges that an individual who has autism may face each day. The video is narrated by a young individual who has autism. The individual explains why she/he sometimes demonstrates unusual behaviors. Tools are reutilized along with the video to provide a hands-on learning experience for those individuals who are participating in the program. Participants utilize special glasses, different textures of paper, and oven mitts to experience how sensory processing deficits are often the function of the unusual behaviors. By developing a better understanding of autism, students will also develop a deeper empathy for those individuals who have autism. This cycle will help to ensure a school-wide culture of understanding and acceptance.

i-Pads in First Grade Classrooms

This grant will acquire 26 i-Pads for the two first grade classrooms at St. Michael’s Catholic School. The i-Pads will be used during our Language Arts time to enhance reading, listening, and writing skills, as well as used in science class.

Sensory Tools for CID/Lifeskills

This will provide students with a tool to help them self-regulate, calm, organize and focus for learning. Due to the many difficulties these students have with their sensory systems and abilities, the need for sensory inputs can often interfere with their ability to attend to, and participate in their school environment. This can often times be decreased when provided with sensory inputs such as deep pressure.

SAD Therapy Sun Lamps

SAD sun therapy lamps will be used to help students suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder. We would like to see improved attendance, improved test scores, and overall student wellness.

2013 Spring Grants

iPads for Bridges

This was a "special" grant submitted by Bridges Area Learning Center. The purpose of the grant was to engage 100+ of at-risk students in the community with technology and its educational benefits. The Laker Educational Foundation partnered with the Prior Lake Optimist Foundation and the Prior Lake Lions Club to bring this grant to fruition.

E-Books for Media Center

E-books are important in the media center because they can be read by multiple students at the same time. The desired outcome is staff has more sources and students have continued access to books that they need.

Archery Equipment

The Prior Lake Recreation Department would like to offer an archery program. They have implemented a “try it” program that has been quite successful. They would like to use the program during playground and adventure camp along with family archery days in the spring and fall. 

MicroGX Materials & Technology

On behalf of the middle school students, five teachers drafted a proposal based on an experiment designed by one of our 8th grade students to fly aboard NASA’s reduced gravity flight in Houston. The proposal was accepted and chosen to represent our student by performing the student developed experiment titled, “The behavior of acoustic energy in micro-gravity,” at Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX in July. This project is an opportunity for teachers and students to collaborate on the development and execution of high quality scientific experiments with the direct involvement of mentors who work for NASA.  

SKIS - Skiing Kids in School

We wish to purchase new cross country ski boots to replace those some that are 30 years old. The intent of the project is to continue the cross country ski program at Five Hawks that is currently a unit to supplement the fitness unit using the E-STEM model. Cross country skiing is a low-impact aerobic exercise and a sport that students can continue for a lifetime. It also helps them to get outside in the winter and to develop a healthy lifestyle that fights child obesity.

Signing Time DVD Collection

This is a collection of signing time videos that will be shared in the deaf/hard of hearing program, lifeskills, and early childhood programs to promote language development in deaf and hard of hearing students and their families.


Kindergarten teachers at St. Michael’s would like to update the technology in the kindergarten classrooms and move away from overhead projectors. This technology helps meet the needs of all children by incorporating multiple learning styles. It is capable of addressing the needs of visual learners, auditory learners, and kinesthetic learners all at the same time. 

Ipod Touches in Media Center

Elementary students would have access to IOS devices to check out from the media center to listen to book review podcasts or read e-Books. After the introduction, the iPod touches would be integrated in the media literacy curriculum. 

Parenting & Child Development Class

This grant would provide skills and training to students in the life skills of parenting, child development understanding, brain research and infant/early childhood attachment. A joint staffing and curriculum outreach model will link a licensed parent educator with ALC staff to facilitate and implement curriculum on-site at Bridges. 

21st Century Book Reports

Students would have a resource to engage the world around them with iPad minis. Projects could be assigned that have embedded QR Codes into daily assignments and book review. Student’s record videos using iPads, upload them to YouTube and link to their assignment using a QR Code.