The following are brief summaries of mini-grants awarded for the 2018-2019 school year. They represent many tactics to help students with disabilities. Review them and be inspired to apply for your own Dana Brown Teacher Mini-grant for the 2019-2020 school year. Find the application, which is due in early December 2018, here. (The new application and due date will be posted as soon as established.)

Janece Albers
SSD – Ackerman School
Rhythm with a Purpose, Year 4: Independence
Drum circles can promote stress relief, empowerment, and unity. They can target social skills, attention and academics.

Julie Aldridge and Rodnesha Chatman
Hazelwood North Middle School
Technology for TODs
There is a district wide push for chromebooks and technology in daily classroom learning. Our goal is to give technological acess to all of our students regaurdless of socioeconomic status. We will use chromebooks to provide deaf/hard of hearing students the same acess to the curricula as their general education peers.

Leslie Auer
Webster Groves – Steger 6th Grade Center
Reset Room
The Reset Room is a station based room for students who are having a tough day. The room would allow for students to have a break by completeing a job task or sensory task. This would allow them to regulate their emotions ands “reset” so that they can move on with their day without judgment.

Amy Bachman
Mehlville High School
Self-Soothe Sensory Tools Center
This project consists of obtaining tools for each of the five senses to be used for self-soothing mindfulness practice.

Thomas Bamvakais
SSD – VSP
Manners Matter
This course provided important life skills for our students in a general public and private social/business situations. Children with basic manners are more predisposed to taking turns, cooperating with others and listening to others.

Mary Barfield and Kim Brandt
Hazelwood – Russell Elementary
Increasing Student Independance Through Music and Movement
This project would allow for music therapy strategies and interventions to be reinforced throughout a student’s day. Most special education classrooms do not have access to theraputically appropriate adaptable musical instruments or equipment. This grant would give educators such access. These instruments and supplies will help facilitate behavioral skills, social skills, academic skills, fine motor skills, gross motor skills, sensory integration and communication skills for students in the special edcation classroom.

Patricia Billeau and Barbara Raney
SSD – Northview
Inclusive Live Theatre (Meeting and Exceeding IEP Goals through Live Theatre)
This grant will be used to provide opportunities for students at Northview High School to participate in a full scale theatrical production. This production allows students with a wide range of education diagnoses to learn and interact in a setting that promotes communication, collaboration, and soft social skills.

Patricia Billeau and Barbara Raney
SSD – Northview
Common Connections, Bringing ELA Instruction to Life Through Live Theatre
This grant will be used to provide opprotunities for students at Northview to read (or listen to), discuss and analyze three plays that will be performed by local professional theatre troupes during the 2019-2020 school year. Students will complete a comparative analysis between the reading and live performances.

Ellen Birch
SSD – Ackerman
Circle of Friends – Field Day 2019
We have planned a day filled with a variety of activities. The fourth grade New City School students will partner with an Ackerman friend and will assist them with the many activitie planned for the day.

Heather Bircher and Jessica Young
SSD – Ackerman
A.I.M.S Project Adapting Innovative Materials for Students
A.I.M.S Project will allow the teachers in the MU and AU population to buy games, toys, and books for the students who are non-verbal and need adapted and modified hands-on material.

Karlon Bishop
SSD – ECSE Countywide
EC Special Education Project Hope Holiday Assistance
Helping families to alleviating the barriers that hinder their ability to support children would allow for more growth and engagement during this time. The goal of “ECSE Project Hope for Holiday Assistance” is to ensure that every child has a present under the tree and warm clothes for the winter months.

Emily Bowman
Parkway West Middle School
Flexible Seating for Middle School Students with Special Needs
I would like to provide alternative seating for middle school students needs to promote self-regulation and on tast behavior in resource settings.

Beth Brackin
Hazelwood – OT
Use of an iPad for Motor Control Gains for Students with Limited Printing Progress
Use of specific iPad applications allow students to work on eye-hand coordination, finger isolation, and letter formation in engaging contex, leading to demonstrative gains in motor control and printing legibility. Students are more interested and engaged as they master foundational fine and visual motor skills needed for legible printing.

Kimberly Brandt
Hazelwood – Russell Elementary
Vibrant Classroom Library
The purpose of the Vibrant Classroom Library, is to help enhance a more robust classrom library for our emerging and pre-emerging students in the elementary setting.

Tina Breeden
SSD – Neuwoehner
Building Skills Outside the PAES LAB
Through job training, students will build skills to enhance the PAES LAB experience. Having job boxes available for students to practice skills that they may not be exposed to in everyday situations throughout the school day.

Emily Brizendien
Ferguson Florissant – Duchesne
Flexible Seating for Learning
This grant will assist students by providing flexible, alternate seating for students with sensory support needs and learning style preferences.

Megan Browne
SSD – ECSE Ladue/Ritenour/Brentwood
Increasing Social Emotional Skills in Early Childhood using Video Modeling
This project involves using an iPad device to assist the learning of pro-social behaviors via video modeling and electronic visual stories for students with significant concerns in social/emotional behavior. Video modeling and visual stories will be used during small group and individual instruction to teach, model, and demonstrate appropriate behavior.

Jennifer Buehrer
Ferguson Florissant – McCluer North High School
Cooking with Confidence- A CBVI Experience at McCluer North High School
This project is designed to allow the students of the Essential Skills program to learn cooking skills and build their independence.

Kelly Burgio and Joy Klebolt
Rockwood – Ellisville Elementary – PT
Adapted Tricycle: Let’s get moving!
Sixty minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity is recommended daily for children by the CDC. An adapted tricycle would be used as a way to promote physical activity, increase active and active-assisted movement, and promote communication.

Clementine Carbery and Thomas Bamvakais
SSD – VSP
Picnic in the Park
The goal of Picnic in the Park is to build relationsips, find happiness, and succeed with life skills. It also contributes to a positive classroom environment. Students will participate in physical fitness, health enhancing activities that will define and promote physical and motor skills, fundamental motor skills and patterns and skills in individual and group games and sports.

Daniele Cerone-Griffin
SSD – ECSE Countywide
Enhancing Learning Opportunities for Core Word Language in Early Childhood
This project involves using iPad devices to enhance the learning skills of ECSE students via the usuage of video modeling related to the Core Word Language. The video modeling will be used to increase the extent of multi-modal learning through real life learning experiences.

Victoria Cicotte and Jessica Young
SSD – Ackerman
Play Is Learning
Our students are unable to use their fine and gross motor skills purposefully and applicably, making it extremely difficult for them to independantly operate or use a toy/object/item or computer. The items requested in this grant will allow the students to form the foundation for communication, computer use, and independant leisure.

Kira Collins and Sonja Conley
SSD – Northview – SW
Sand Tray Therapy
This form of therapy is a combination of nonverbal and talk therapy techniques, and utilizes the miniatures to creae scenes in the sand that give the therapist insight into the thoughts, feelings and concerns of the student.

Emily Conkling
Ritenour – Hoech Middle School
Cooking in the Classroom
Cooking every Friday teaches both functional and social skills. During our cooking activities we were able to incorporate math, reading, science, daily living and social skills.

Emily Conkling
Ritenour – Hoech Middle School
Increasing Students’ Independance with Personal Care
The daily hygiene routine teaches students necessary life skills involved with personal care. The goal is for all students to gain more independance with and understand the importance of personal care.

Sara Couch
SSD – Ackerman
Access to Art for All
This project would fund a two series art class at the Living Art Studio. The students will be designing and creating their own jewelry using an adapted curriculum and materials. On the final session, students will display their art while enjoying snacks fom the Living Room located next door which employs adults with disabilities.

Sara Couch
SSD
Let it Grow! Gardening for Health and Independence (3)
For this project to continue, asking for funds to purchase seeds, plants, organic fertilizers, and adaptive tools to ensure that all students will be able to participle.

Julie David and Sarah Schuette
SSD – VSP
Lunch Bunch @ Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s Hospital VSP
Students volunteer at the Family Dinner Program at Ronald McDonald house and cook lunch once a month. This opprotunity provides a functional setting, an increase in students’ knowledge of food preperation, and how to shop at a grocery store. Navigating the kitchen, nutrition, food shopping, budgeting, money skills, and functional reading are all areas that will be emphazied through this program.

Sarah Davidovits and Julie Griswold
Ritenour
Making Mealtime Fun (3)
Students in self-contained classrooms are not consuming food during mealtimes due to food aversions and sensory sensitives. By creating a Making Mealtime Fun group, this program will incorporate sensory stimulation techniques, oral motor and behavioral strategies to increase food consumption during the day.

Anna Davis
SSD – Neuwoehner High School
Trauma Informed Yoga for Girls
This 8-week yoga program is designed to help anyone who identifies as a girl work on mindfulness, relaxation and positive peer interactions. Classes are taught by a trauma informed certified yoga teacher to ensure the emotional safe space and safety for students.

Laurie DeJohn and Emily Milligan
Rockwood – Selvidge Middle School
Partnership for Kids
Partnership for Kids is an after school club for middle school kids with social challenges. We would like to expand out club to include more general education students. This grant will be used to provide activities and supplies.

Mara Della Croce
Mehlville Point, MOSAIC, and Mehlville High – OT
iCan with an iPad: Using an iPad toWork on Fine Motor, Visual Motor, and Visual Perceptual Skills in OT
Implementing the iPad to use with students will help them become more motivated and willing to work on their fine motor, visual motor, sensory motor, visual perceptual, self care, and independant living skills.

Stephanie Dillon and Ashley Case
SSD – Neuwoehner High School
Neuwoehner Yearbook
A staff and student created comprehensive school yearbok for students to provide visual memories of peers, staff, events and activities within the Neuwoehner community.

Carrie Doll, Amanda Berndt and Darla Krause
Ladue Fifth Grade Center
Increase Engagement through Flexible Seating Options
Students would be able to use stability ball stools, stability discs, stools, standing desk, stabilty boards, wobble chairs, tilt seats, and balance seats to focus in our classroom.

Bridget Donnelly
Rockwood – Stanton Elementary School
Wow, watch my communications grow!
Creating word of the week kits to teachers, paraprofessionals, and specialists to help provide fun, interactive opportunities for students with AAC devices to have numerous opportunies to practive core vocabulary across the school.

Emily Duggin
Parkway – Carman Trails, Oak Brook, Southwest Middle School – OT
The Right Balance 2
All grades should have a variety of sensory tools to support elementry school students’ learning. These rocking chairs look like regular classroom chairs, except have rocking capability with brake support to prevent tripping.

Carolyn Eagle
SSD – Litzsinger
Library MakerSpace iPad
My goal is to have at least 1 iPad in each of the libraries’ MakerSpace areas that the teachers could use with their students.

Elizabeth Ehrhart-Collier
Rockwood Summit
Crafting with Collier
I would like to purchase staple items as well as molds to make soap available for school wide purchase through “Crafting with Collier.”

Amy Eichorn
SSD – South Tech High School
Light Manufacturing – Colorized!
A color printer would promote student learning activities such as learning line usuage in drawings and blue prints through colorized handouts, assignments, games, experiments, and quizzes. Students would be able to print their photos and graphics, thereby increasing their understanding of the topics being covered.

Jennifer Eilers
Lindbergh – Sappington
Sensory and Calming Area
I would like to create a sensory-calming area in my classroom to help my students with self regulation so they can attend to learning. I would like an area to be a safe space where my students can de-escalate and get their bodies ready to learn.

Elizabeth Engelmeyer
SSD – Ackerman
Learning Through Play
Educational toys would encourage students to learn how to play with the toys and with their peers. The students will use their senses to explore and discover what each toy can do, and how to work/play with each toy.

Elizabeth Engelmeyer
SSD – Ackerman
Continuing to Quilt with a Purpose (3)
Stations will be set up with students rotating through working on different sections of the quilt. Students will learn that a project this size will require time and patience.

Elizabeth Engelmeyer
SSD – Ackerman
Derby Days (3)
The purpose of this project is to have an annual pinewood derby that will be planned, set up, and led by every student, and staff.

Heather Field
SSD – Northview
Leisure Fun
This grant is being written to provide a variety of recreational and leisure activities in order for students to increase communication abilities, while developing life skills, through participating in leisure activity.

Christy Finazzo-Purl and Jessica Wheeler
Pattonville – Willow Brook
Flexible Seating for Therapy Success!
This project will create a learning environment for students to be comfortable in order to be more receptive to learning. Students will have the opprotunity to sit on the various sensory seats such as a wobble chair, ball chair, or use a weighted lap pad while learning at a horseshoe table.

Elizabeth Finke and Erica Axelbaum
Riverview – Moline Elementary
Therapeutic classroom grant
We teach in the Kid Connect Program at Moline Elementry. We teach our students how to regulate their emotions, handle frustrating situations, how to decrease inappropriate physical behaviors, how to make friends, and how to appropriately communicate with others.

Maggie Fitzpatrick-Johnson
Pattonville – Willow Brook
Flexible Seating for Resource Sucess
This project will create a learning environment for students to be comfortable in order to be more receptive to learning. Students will have the opprotunity to sit on the various sensory seats such as a wobble chair, acordian chair, or use a weighted lap pad while leaning at a horseshoe table.

Tino Forneris
SSD – Northview
Pedal Power – Northview’s Cycling Club
I would like to expand our students choices of extra-cirriculars to include a Tri-Cycling Club. The club would be an opprotunity for our students to take turns riding and exersicing.

Tino Forneris
SSD – Northview
Building Strong Character Through Good Sportsmanship, Teamwork, School Spirit and Diversity (3)
The long term goal is to have two or three character basketball teams and character spirit team of cheerleaders. For the basketball team, we are asking for nice uniforms will build excitement for the team.

Kelsey Galbraith
SSD – Ackerman
Inventors “STEM” from Opportunity, part 2
Through makerspace, students will be able to participate in STEM activities that help the students to view themselves as inventors, builders, engineers, artists, and creators.

Kelsey Galbraith
SSD – Ackerman
Putting Our Best Face Forward
Students will have a morning routine to practice daily hygiene. Students will become more familiar with the importance of brushing their teeth, washing their face, and applying deodorant. When students are well groomed and cleaned, theri self-esteen and self-image will improve, leading to better peer relationships, classroom engagement, and focus on their academic tasks through out the day.

Gayle Giancola
Ritenour High School
Social Work Care Corner
Everyday our students are impacted by the lack of resoures and necessities. Lacking basic items such as deodorant, clean clothes, and items such as a book bags impair the student’s chance to be successful in school.

Nancy Giannasi
Ritenour – Wyland Elementary
Pedal Your Way to Learning
Reciprocal movement when pedaling a stationary bicycle, has numerus long term benefits for students, in regards to mental health, physical well being, emotional health and concentration. After a session of pedaling, students are able to concentrate better and ignore distractions. It also is an excellent way for very active students to channel their energy.

Jean Goldstein
Hazelwood – Brown Elementry School
Social Reading, Social Learning
There is a plethora of amazing children’s literature that focuses on specific skills my students need to further develop. Students would will journal their personal responses.

Elizabeth Greten
SSD – Ackerman
Family and Friends Spaghetti Lunch
To create an event in which students are able to showcase the various life skills they have learned through out the school year. This event would be a chance for students to demontrate the skills they have learned for family, staff and school mentors.

Lori Guess and Jayne Mansfield
SSD – Northview
Expanding Communication and Life Skills in the Kitchen
This grant is being written to provide materials and supplies needed in order to provide the opportunity for our students to learn independant cooking skills for the real world while having opprotunities to practice using their communication systems with peers in an informal setting.

Lori Guess
SSD – Northview
Developing Functional Communication Systems Through Sensory Integration Strategies
This grant will give our students who use augmentative and alternative communication systems materials needed to create opprotunities to give them a reason to communicate, by systematically analyzing their preferred learning methods.

Mary Hackworth
Parkway – Barretts/ Sorrento Springs – OT
Every Transition Counts
I am asking for funding for two transition boxes, one for each school I work at. The tools in these boxes will provide materials and activities for students to have tranquil transitions between classes, making every moment count and promoting positive mental health during the school day.

Jean Hantak
Valley Park Elementary
“Weight” a Minute
Purchase weighted lap pads, animals, wraps, etc. to complement the flexible seating that various classrooms use.

Julie Harter and Josie Lamb
SSD – ECSE Countywide
Technology as a Tool for Growth
Providing the ECSE classrooms with access to iPads will allow teachers to use technology as a tool for growth in all early learners. It will increase students’ capacity to develop in all areas of academic success.

Steven Headrick
Mehlville High School
Gardening With a Purpose
Mehlville High School’s vocational skills class will use the Tower Garden to grow herbs and spices. Once grown we will sell these on our Coffee Cart. We will also use the herbs and spices in our Foods Class. This hands-on and real-life learning will help create a meaningful learning environment for our students.

Rebecca Helms
SSD – Northview High School
Building Strong Character Through Good Sportsmanship, Teamwork, School Spirit and Diversity: Part II
This is a continuation to our vision of our Cheer Squad’s uniforms at Northview High School. Our students have various needs and ailments and come together and collaborate at practice once a week for games.

Deanna Heuring
SSD – VSP
Wearable Independence (3)
Students will wear a programable Octopus Wearable watch which sends visual reminders to interns regarding their daily schedule. This watch allows interns to create good habits and keep them on pace during the work day.

Candy Hickerson and Jessica Givens
VI/OI Countywide
Interacting in My Visual World Without Vision
Students will be given a budgeted amount and a task to complete. The tasts will inclyde opprotunities to interact with the community by making a purchase from local shops or restaurants.

Colleen Hoeflinger and Kara Rose
Lindbergh Early Childhood
Indy Boxes (Independent Play Boxes)
We would use 10 tupperware containers that each contain an activity that a 3-5 year old student can utilize independently.

Jennifer Hoffman
Hazelwood Central Middle School
Calming Activities to Support Emotional Learning
This project developed in order to help students regulate their emotions. The idea is use calming items in order to help students gain independance in self-regulating. The second piece helps students seek art as a coping mechanism in itself.

Rachel Holtman and Amanda Howell
DHH Hazelwood – Brown Elementary School
DHH Social Safari
Students from Bellerieve Elementary and Brown Elementary Deaf/Hard of Hearing Programs will penpal with a peer from the opposite school. After corresponding, they will meet thier pen pal for a day of fun, socializing and language learning at Forest Park.

Megan Holzum
Riverview Glasgow Elementary
New Autism Classrooms Open!
Due to the severity of the disability and the number of students we are currently serving, we have hired a new teacher and opened a new classroom for our students. Between the three of us, we are struggling to meets the needs of our students due to a shortage in supplies that our district will not provide, in addition to having to share current supplies.

Maura Hubbard
Parkway – Wren Hollow
Trauma Informed Yoga
Students will receive a weekly trauma sensitive yoga class that incorporates art, music, games and other activities. This class will focus on mindfullness which will encourage new ways to self-regulate problem solve, show self-confidence and work as a team.

Marcie Huelsing and Melanie Fitzgerald, Melanie
Lindbergh West Early Childhood Center
Lights, Camera, Action! Using Video Modeling to Promote Learning for Individuals with Autism
The iPad and other materials to support video modeling will be used to make and display videos pertinent to student learning. The go-pro camera will be used to make a video from the first person position so students can see it in the first person. The editing program will allow teachers to edit and create videos in a more efficient matter.

Denise Inman and Bridget Meinen
Hazelwood West High School
Creating a Sensory Oasis at Hazelwood West
The purpose of this proposal is to acquire funding to purchase equipment and implement a sensory regulation room which will provide a nurtuing, student-centered sensory supportive environment for students with a wide range of special needs.

Jamie Kessler, Jennifer Patrick and Jennifer Haskell
Brentwood Early Childhood Center
Healthy Creative Cooking for Little Chefs
The overarching concept behind this request to bring educational supports around healthy eating through cooking to enhance pre-academics in the areas of pre-reading, pre-math, fine motor control, social emotional support through increased attention to task and turn taking, and pre-science of prediction and anticipation.

Mandy Kirby
Parkway – Carman Trails
Self-Regulation Room
This will be a self-regulation room inside the special education classroom. This will be a place for students to come and use toold to helo them regulate their bodies back to a “green zone,” which is considered the zone where optimal learning occurs.

Carrie Klein
SSD – VSP
VSP Family Night Out
VSP Family Night Out is a program designed to connect parents/guardians and SSD VSP students with adult support agencies outside the normal school day 2-3 times/year. In addition, the program strives to provide an opportunity for parents/guardians to expand their support network by connecting with each other.

Heather Koepke
Pattonville – Drummond
Not Incomprehensible!!
I will use the money to purchase resources like centers and lessons for reading comprehension. The materials I have found will help to engage learners in second through fifth grade.

Heather Koepke
Pattonville – Drummond
No Need to Stress!
The students and I will make “toolkits” for them to use in the classroom when they become dysregulated. For younger students who aren’t at the stage of using tools independnetly to regulate their bodies, I would like to purchase a sensory walk to put in the hallway.

Kathleen Kras
Hazelwood – McNair
Kindness Cart
In a resource setting, students will pair up to deliver trears and fun theme items to teachers. Students will practice completeing a job application, job interview skills, use communications effectively and treat each other with kindess as they work together.

Justin Landherr
Mehlville High School
Flexible Fun
Students will be given various flexible seating options to increase movement opportunities during instruction. Flexible seating options will help students with sensory needs by providing stimulus and therapeutic opportunities.

Sarah Lehman and Tracy Kroenlein
Lindbergh – ECSE, West, and South County Tech
Food Discovery For Little Taste Buds
Students will take part in safely preparing snacks, working together, and strengthening their cooperative play skills.

Katie Letsinger, Tina Breeden and Michelle Stumpf
SSD – Neuwoehner High School
Facs for Life: Graduation, Preparation, and Celebration (3)
Through the FACS class students learn to plan, budget, and prepare/hold events for seniors graduating. Students will plan a luncheon and a graduation reception using the skills learning in class like planning, itemizing, budgeting, preparing, and serving by using teamwork and problem solving for the senior class.

Lisa Levine
Hazelwood – Russell Elementary
Sensory Supported Mindfulness
Providing sensory supports to special education students in a variety of school settings will enable the students to benefit from mindfullness strategies/opprotunities, which will support their ability to become regulated and available for learning, and improve their ability to reach their special education goals.

Maria Lindsay and Connie Fiore
Parkway Early Childhood Center
Tower Garden by Juice Plus Lights and Supplies
We purchased a Tower Garden by Juice Plus a couple of Years ago through a teacher min-grant. The lights broke and need to be replaced. In addition, we need a new supplies including rock wool, net pots, and Ph balance kit solution.

Tara Litteken
Riverview Districtwide – SW
Traveling Mindfulness and Yoga
Implementing yoga and mindfuless into the thereputic program will help with managing stress, emotional regulation, and interpersonal skills.

Selina Loughridge
SSD – Northview High School
Dress for Success in the World of Work
The focus of this project is to increase student understanding and preparedness for the world of work after graduation. Students will be given opportunities to learn and practice appropriate hygiene skills, uniform care and presentation and personal management while in the school environment and then transfer these skills to their job training sites at the airport.

Margaret Lovera
SSD – Countywide – SW
Social Work Care Closet
The closet will be accessed by SSD Social Workers based on the needs they identify and those of any other staff who identify a student who is struggling to learn and be present based on a lack of basic care items. This closet is run by students for students.

Lisa MacKenzie, Laura Moore and Adele Johnson
Parkway Early Childhood Center
Supporting ECSE students in the Community
The itinerant teachers are in need of additional funding for children’s literature to support Social Emotional Behavior and games for children to play to practice the skills they are learning in the curriculum.

Kari Mahoney
Webster Groves Ambrose Family Center ECSE – SLP
Using Literacy to Teach Core Language
Create a core language library that could be used in early childhood classrooms and in language therapy sessions. The books would also be used as a lending library for families.

Janet Matthew
SSD – Litzsinger
Friendly Fall Festival
This friendly fall festival will concentrate on bringing students and families together for a night of fun and interactive activities.

Michael McMurtrey
SSD – Neuwoehner
Engaging Families, Building Community
This project is designed to get students and a family member together outside of typical school hours. I am planning an event per semester at a location that is centrally located and provides an entertaining activity for families to participate in. I am also proposing an event in our classoom for students to bring their families to campus and present their growth throughout the year.

Amy Meeks
Ritenour – Hoech Middle
Nix the Noise!
This project will provide noise-cancelling headphones for students who are highly destractible. These tools will be made available during academic instruction and testing environments.

Amy Meeks
Ritenour – Hoech Middle
Tech Time for Teens
My students need chromebooks in order to engage in meaningful acquisition of self-management strategies in order to participate in rigorous learning expierences. Increased access to these tech tools will allow my students the opprotunity to increase their motivation toward learning.

Katie Meyer, Erin Douglas and Lisa Hamel
Affton/Bayless ECSE
Expose, Explore, Expand: Key to developing a happy, healthy eater
The program will first include exposing students to a variety of fruits and vegetables through hands on activities as an introduction to remove the fear of unfamiliar foods. The next step will involve exploring the foods in more detail and then taste testing. The child will then fill out a (visual) yum scale. The final phase is to expand the diet of picky eaters.

Chrissy Monolo
Parkway Early Childhood Center
Hear Me Now
This project involves purchasing 30 portable Bluetooth speakers to be used with communication devices. This will allow our students who use iPads to communicae to consistently hear their communication device and will allow them to be better heard by others.

David Montgomery and Christy Hagy
SSD – Northview High School
Adapted Leisure for Students with Disabilities
The adaptive materials requested with this grant will allow accessibility and inclusiveness of students with the most significant needs. Besides providing opportunities for new experiences and interacting with peers, this grant would allow students to develop skills neccesary to enjoy personal time such as turn taking, good sportsmanship, basic game rules, choice making and entertaining self.

David Montgomery and Michael Laspe
SSD – Northview High School
Accessible Fun for Everyone
Northview annually holds events that invites the community to celebrate our schools work and students along with providing opportunities for our students to enjoy activities in a fully inclusive environment that meets their needs.

Julie Moorman
SSD – Ackerman
Jumping Higher
Altitude Trampoline Park closes their park to the public for the day and sets up areas for our more medically fragile students to safely participate and get out of their chairs to enjoy the amenities their more able-bodied friends enjoy. Altitude also lowers music and dims lights for children with sensory issues.

Mary Morgan and Linda Deposki
Ladue Middle School
Partners Club Meeting & Service Projects
We come together as students with and without disabilities to socialize and serve our community.

Kathleen Murphy
Kirkwood – North Middle School
Best Buddiest Swing
A glider/porch swing for students who access the alternative learning classroom made available as a break/choice option throughout their day.

Andrew Nardi, Tami Melton and Morgan
Kirkwood High School
The Pioneer Wagon (3)
This project will provide academic learning opportunities as well as social learning experiences that will promote a sense of community at the high school level. Students will participate in weekly cooking activities aligned to the curriculum standards and IEP objectifies in the area of functional independence, speech, language, and motor skills.

Stephanie Ochoa and Steven Headrick
Mehlville High School
Vocational Skills – Task Boxes
Students developing various job related skills need practice. Practice creates independence, and the visual supports provided in the task boxes will allow students to decrease prompting levels.

Lindsay Parker-Klimpel
Ladue – Old Bonhomme Elementary
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words: Promoting Speech and Language through Wordless Picture Books
A wordless picture book library would help the speech and language students improve their communication skills. Wordless picture books have compelling illustrations that depict an unfolding plot, allowing students to dream up the narrative and dialogue motivating and engaging students. Wordless picture books are the perfect canvas for students to display their connected speech, narrative, grammatical, inferential, and vocabulary skills through imaginative storytelling.

Cynthia Perkins and Mary Elfrink
SSD – South Countywide: LIndbergh/Affton/Bayless/Hancock Place – SLP
Evaluating Causal Reasoning and Language Skills in Preschoolers
Cause-effect toys will be utilized to assist in assessing cognitive and language function in preschoolers

Kim Pietrzak and Katie Letsinger, Katie
SSD – Neuwoehner High School
Field Day for Everyone
To provide an all-inclusive filed day; adding new activities that can be adapted to many different skill levels so all students are able to fully participate in the school-wide celebration.

Michelle Pittman and Monica Smith
SSD – VSP Garden Villa’s
Picnic Social Gathering
To provide and opportunity for students participating in the VSP programs to socialize and get to discuss other opportunities in the North County area.

Danielle Podmore
Hazelwood – Armstrong
Put down the Xbox Controller and Pull Up a “Gaming Chair”
Students will be able to read on their lexile level in a gaming chair instead of the cold floor. This creats a more comfortable and motivating learning environment for students to enjoy reading.

Katherine Radcliff and Heather Field
SSD – Northview High School
Music Motivation
This grant will allow students with disabilities the ability to access music. Music provides our students with the motivation to communicate and learn. Music increases communication skills by teaching cause and effect, sensory awareness, auditory development, and language development. It is difficult to find activities that are highly motivating for students with Autism and multiple disabilities. We want to give the students a reason to communicate in a fun and engaging way. This grant will allow students to independently access music in a structured environment. It will allow us to have access to student preferences for music and a way to make sure that we can allow for school appropriate content.

Katherine Radcliff
SSD – Northview High School
Using Core to Communicate
This grant is being written to provide a variety of activities to be used to teach core word vocabulary. Core vocabulary is a small set of simple words, in any language, that are used frequently and across contexts. (Cross, Baker, Klotz, & Badman, 1997). Funds from this grant will be used to purchase items and materials to make and adapt activities centered around core words. Our students learn best by interactive and multi-sensory games, activities, and printed materials which are not readily available and will be purchased or made, thereby creating a units with a variety of activities in order to teach each word that will be shared between classrooms.

Tina Rellergert and Carrie Gausling
Pattonville High School
Iron Chef Functional Skills
The Iron Chef Program provides students within the Functional Skills and Community Based Vocational Program, an opportunity to focus on post-secondary life skills, which provides them with the necessary knowledge to function as independently as possible. Students enrolled in the programs utilize the teaching kitchen on a daily basis and require cookware and utensils in order to properly practice daily living skills, life skills, and functional skills. Obtaining appropriate and reliable teaching tools will allow for student growth and mastery of independent skills.

Rhonda Rigsby and Anna Funkhouser
SSD – Juvenile Detention Center
Positive Reinforcement for Detention Center Students
The Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports team (PBIS) within the Juvenile Detention Center operates an incentive program in which a point system is used to reinforce student for engaging in desired behaviors. Students receive points for following school-wide expectations. Expectations for behavior draw upon character education standards and focus on skills that help students successfully transition from the Juvenile Detention Center to their home schools. Points earned by students are exchanged for positive reinforcers for students. However, the financial burden has become infeasible for staff to manage without outside support. The Juvenile Detention Center School is asking for financial assistance to help continue their incentive program.

Jodi Roberts
Hazelwood West Middle School
Adaptive Seating and Sensory Supports
Sensory supports serve as important regulations for students with autism and assist them in working and attending to tasks for an increased amount of time. Alternate seating helps serve this need as students are able to remain in controlled motion while interacting with curriculum. These workspace options allow for optimal learning in an environment designed for all learners. The material requested will be used daily in my middle school Essential Skills classroom. I teach students with Autism, Intellectual and Emotional Disabilities, and Physical and Visual Impairments which require an environment that provides change and opportunity unlike a classroom of neurotypical peers. The stationary cycle and wobble chairs provide flexible seating options that are comfortable for students so that they can be productive members of class and work to their full potential. The ceiling light filters will ensure proper lighting for those with visual impairments. Some students with attention or emotional deficits would benefit from the body sock and fidget/sensory items to keep their bodies busy while productively working. Ee also incorporate STEAM water activities. Our students work best with hands-on activities and would benefit from using whiteboards, balance scales, geometric shapes, and manipulatives. I want to ensure students are prepared for high school and beyond. With the proper classroom structure and opportunities for growth my students will be able to take on life’s future adventures! These items will be implemented and used immediately with all students in my Essential Skills classroom. I will know these items are ensuring success when the amount of emotional dysregulations and outbursts are reduced. After implementation we will have a class of happy, healthy students who learn strategies to regulate their emotions and use their sensory supports in a positive manner.

Joe Schappe
SSD – VSP-Little Creek
Little Creek VSP Garden Project
Grant funding will enable Vocational Skills Program (VSP) students with significant disabilities at the Little Creek site to create, maintain, and complete an innovative gardening project that will include edible plants, flowers, and shrubs. Student will use creative, innovative, experiential learning activities combining gardening with entrepreneurship as they plant, cultivate, and harvest living things. Thiss will provide students with significant disabilities with a sense of accomplishment while they learning multiple skill sets with programming in horticulture and marketing concepts. They will learn principles of entrepreneurship by marketing their harvested plants at SSD’s North Tech facility to provide project sustainability for many years. In addition, they will learn a life skill that will promote job readiness and provide an enjoyable hobby after they have completed their training.

Sarah Schuette and Julie David
SSD – VSP-Children’s Hospital/BJC
Meet Us in St. Louis: Vocational Skills Program Spring Fling
The BJC and Children’s Hospital Vocational Skills Program teachers are coordinating the annual VSP Spring FLing, and this year, the theme will be “Meet Us in St. Louis”. All current VSP students are invited to attend this event, where they will be provided the opportunity to continue their overall postsecondary experience in a fun, safe, and comfortable community environment. The Vocational Skills Program is a county-wide program. VSP students thrive at Spring Flinge, where they are able to make new friends, enhance their social skills, and enjoy time outside of vocational training with their same age peers. The Spring Fling fosters authentic peer interactions among our students, and in addition, while attending the Spring Fling, our students develop new frienships that they may not have had the opportunity to develop otherwise. Students also have the opportunity to apply their learning and progress towards IEP and transition goals at this culminating social activity. Research has proven that students with strong social skills are more likely to have a higher quality of life; the VSP Spring Flings gives further meaning and purpose to social skils instruction in the VSP setting, as students apply their skills in this community-based social event. Our students are able to practice independence at the Spring Fling, and they have the opportunity to fully enjoy leisure time in an environment where they are safe and supervised. In addition, several of our students are hired for paid positions in companies that have social gatherings, luncheons, dinners, and/or formal events in order to celebrate their employees. The VSP Spring Fling gives students the opportunity to practice the skills they will need to display at these corporate events. This grant will help to offset the price of participation for all students, and it will allow us to provide the students with a sensory-friendly, fun-filled prom experience that they may have never experienced before. The costs of this event continue to increase, and with this grant, all students, especially those facing financial hardships, will be able to attend this event, regardless of their ability to pay. The North region of the Vocational Skills Program qualifies for free and reduced lunch.

Sarah Schuette
SSD -VSP St. Louis Children’s Hospital
Get Your Green On: Sensory Supports for a Calm Classroom
The mission of the Vocational Skills Program is “to provide a continuum of supports and services to students and families to assist the students in gaining skills needed to achieve realistic and meaningful postsecondary goals.”  As co-teachers at BJC adn St. Louis Children’s Hospital VSP sites, we strive to provide our students with ample opportunities to access resources and tools that will allow them to achieve their postsecondary goals in the areas of employment, education/training, and independent living.  Many of our students experience stress on a daily basis; however, as they transition into postsecondary life and are immersed in a community volunteer experience, their stress levels often increase.  Our job as VSP teachers is to assit students in developing strategies that will help them manage stress and maintain independence while working.  On a weekly basis, we progress monitor students’ ability to exhibits selected employability skills, and the follwoing are skills that are related to stress-management: “manages stress and emotions,” “displays professional body language,” and “uses voice volume appropriate to work site.”  With this grant, we will be able to create an environment for students where they will be able to develop strategies to manage stress that will not only help them be successful in VSP, but also in their futures.  All of the items we would like to purchase will be practical items that the students culd access in order to relieve stress wihle at the work site.  These items can also be suggested to families so that they can create similar calming environments for students at home.

Catherine Schweitzer
Ferguson-Florissant – Duchesne
Flexible Seating for Learning
This grant will assist students by providing flexible, alternate seating for students with sensory support needs and learning stye preferences.

Virginia Scognamiglio
SSD – Litzsinger
Look What I Can Do
With Look What I Can Do, adapted toys will be purchased and accompanying communication boards will be created. This home to school connection will give children the opportunities to demonstrate the skills they are learning at school, create communication opportunities, and increase the social connectivity between parents and their children in complex bodies through the use of fun, interactive and accessible toys.

Colleen Shaughnessy
SSD Countywide SW
Project Hope
Project Hope is designed to assist needy students and families served by SSD. Like SEF, Project Hope relies solely on the generosity of others – namely SSD staff – to help make a difference in the lives of students outside of the classroom. Each year, Project Hope allows teachers and social workers to nominate students and families in greatest need of assistance. Staff quickly discovered the greatest need occurred during the winter months. Not only were many requests made for warm clothing, but there was also an inordinate amount of pleas for Christmas presents to put under the tree. For the past several years, Project Hope has asked SSF staff to provide financial assistance during the holiday season. For this reason, the Project Hope closet was created. The funds from this grant serve to ensure each child will receive at least one gift on Christmas morning. The impact of the Project Hope closet is felt throughout the county by both children and parents alike. During my four years with SSF, I have been able to deliver gifts from Project Hope to moms during the last week before the break so they can hide them until Christmas morning. The overwhelming gratitude of the families served through this project is absolutely one of the very best parts of my job.

Colleen Shaughnessy
Normandy Middle School
N 7/8 C Care Closet (3)
This program would help provide students with basic needs like uniforms, hygiene products, school supplies, and some low-cost glasses. With the funds, it would allow to keep the closet stocked.

Angela Slape
SSD – Litzsinger
Get Cooking with the All-Stars
Get Cooking with the All-Stars will teach the room 6 All-Stars how to work together as a team each week to prepare a healthy/seasonal snack based upon the five food groups. We will vote for a recipe each Monday and cook the recipe on Fridays. Students will help type the recipe, locate ingredients and materials, and be able to take home a quarterly recipe book. Recipes will focus on seasonal and healthy ingredients that they can easily replicate at home. Emphasis will be on naming and using kitchen materials as well as finding the cost of the ingredients online.

Monica Smith and Michelle Pittman
SSD – VSP – Village of North Retirement Community
Manners Matter
A course to provide important life skills in a feneral public and private situations. Students learn via a lessons and modeling the importance of social manners while in a public, business, private and social gatherings.

Sarah Studie
Rockwood – Westridge
The C- Pen Reader
The C-Pen Reader Pen is a new device designed to aid individuals with dyslexia, ADHD, and other learning disabilities.

Bridget Thomas
SSD – Ackerman
Empowering Girls to become the Women of Tomorrow!
Funding for badges, uniforms and insignia for a girl scout troop meeting to earn badges based on STEM, money management, and health

Nicolya Thomas
Kirkwood High School
Using Therapeutic Yoga to Enhance Classroom Mindfulness Training in Students with ED
Project Achieve is a school based program for students with an emotional disturbance. The Primary goal is for students tp earn a high school diploma and help them develop skills for personal and academic success. Project Achieve has been assisting students with anxiety, poor coping skills, and other mental health issues through the use of yoga, for 20 years.

Christina Throop
Ferguson Florissant
Cross Keys Middle
The “KEY” to Independence is Task Boxes
Students will work on growing independence. They will be given visual, verbal and physical supports and then fade as independence grows.

Dwaine Tipton
SSD – Litzsinger SW
Creative Therapy Group
The group vision is that students will improve their overall emotional health and stability which in return will positively impact academic progress. The group requires social interaction and offers hands-on experiences that result ina tangible take hom item at least once a month.

Kerrie Townsend
SSD Countywide – South Tech
Expanding Opportunities for Special Olympics Athletes
The SSD Special Olympics program serves more than 3500 students at 170 different schools in 22 districts. Financial assistance provides sports adaptive equipment for student attendance and participation.

Mallory Vandermus, Jessica Quest and Michele Hahn
SSD Neuwoehner
Neuwoehner Students Showcasing Character
The Neuwoehner Character Education committe wants to recognize and showcase students who participate and reflect character building efforts throughout the year. The committee would also like to broaden its efforts when having students support homeless shelters at the end of the year.

Michelle Vangilder
Ferguson Florissant – McCluer North
Cool Down Coffee Shop- Student success through school- based CBVI
This project will provid a portable ice machine for our school based CBVI program, North stars Coffee Shop. The coffee shop offers various hot/cold coffee and tea to staff and students. Students in the essential skills program work on job skills in this environment.

Lauren Walls (Vogler)
DHH Hazelwood
Learning Language in a Winter Wonderland (3)
The purpose of this project is to increase expressive and receptive language skills and improve social skills of students. Students will participant in a variety of actives that will allow them to use vocabulary and language concepts taught. The party will include a visit from Santa who uses Sign Language, thus allowing direct communication with students.

Allison Walton
Ferguson Florissant – Combs
Lego-Club
The goal of Lego therapy is to build the types of skills that can help children better engage with peers, share experiences and collaborate.

Tatianna Ware and Carrie Klien
SSD – VSP Countywide
Meet and Greet Vocational Skills Family Night
Designed for students to meet and greet other students from other VSP sites to build their social connections and for parents to get connected with community resources. The event would take place in the community engaging in fun recreational activities, such as bowling or skating.

Deborah Wells, Mary Kirkman and Ellizabeth Feik
University City – Brittany Woods
Noise Hurts!
Noise reducing headphones would increase the time in class and lessen the incidents of shutting down in noisy environments, therefore increasing student success.

Katie Woepke
Lindbergh – Truman Middle School
Interactive Tables Promote Interactive Learning!
White board tables will create an interactive learning experience for all students in the special education setting.

Audrey Wolters and Crystal Bryant
Normandy Kindergarten Center
Rocking in Kindergarten
Movement opportunities for students with disabilities who are transitioning to kindergarten from the early childhood center are needed. These movement opportunities will allow sensory needs to be met while they continue learning with their peers in the general education and special education settings.

Melanie Wood
Parkway/Pattonville – Henry, Holman Middle, Heights Middle, Bridgeway – OT
iPAD innovations in OT
The Osmo Genius Kit is an innovative tool that will help students with fine and gross motor, sensory, self-help, visual perception, visual motor, and social participation. It allows students who are not showing success with paper and pencil tasks to explore other options that technology has to offer. This kit will also promote independence and successful positive experience in the general education setting.

DeAnna Wright-Coffman and Ann Pelt
Parkway Early Childhood Center
LEGO Play Therapy for Early Learning in Social-Emotional Development
Young children’s natural instinct is to learn and grow through play. LEGO play therapy inspire hands-on, intuituve explorations of emotional, collaboration, and social skills. As students work together to build, create stories, and navigate situations together with LEGO blocks, they will strengthen their problem-solving abilities, empathy, and sense of self.

Casey Zuhlke and Kristina Brinkmann
Parkway West Middle – DHH Program
ASL Vocabulary Videos for Students who are Deaf/Hard of Hearing
To develop content specific vocabulary videos that would include the word in print, an ASL sign and, English definition in print, and the fingerspelling of the word. The videos would give students whose first language is American Sign Language to connect concepts they see presented by interpretersnin class with the written words found in their notes and textbooks, making these students less dependent on interpreters and teachers of the deaf when studying for quizzes/tests or completing homework.