PEF awards more than $19,000 in grants for innovative programs
PEF awards more than $19,000 in grants for innovative programs
Tuesday, June 27, 2017
The Pattonville Education Foundation (PEF) awarded more than $19,000 in funds during the 2016-2017 school year for nine different grant proposals that benefit Pattonville students. The individuals who received grants from the foundation, their grant titles and a brief explanation of each are as follows:

  • Mollie Baumann, Bridgeway Elementary School, "Choice-Based Art Program" - The grant paid for sewing machines, sewing accessories and materials and iPads to enable Baumann to implement a Choice-Based Art program for her school. Choice-Based Art is an instructional approach to teaching art in which students are allowed to choose what type of art they want to pursue, based on their own interests and creativity. Choice-Based Art transforms a traditional classroom where everyone works on the same type of art piece using the same parameters to one where students are able to engage in a variety of activities based on their interests - from sculpture and painting to sewing and architecture.
  • Debbie Bicket, Rose Acres Elementary School, "LIM Junior Teacher Storytellers" - The grant paid for professional puppets, puppet accessories and pre-recorded training programs. Rose Acres students will be trained to use professional puppets to tell stories that will enhance literacy and present important social skills and topics to fellow students in kindergarten through second grade. The students being trained to use the puppets will be from the Rose Acres Leader in Me (LIM) Action team called Junior Teachers.
  • Kerry Brown with co-applicants Carrie Dixon, Katie Puller and Travis Williams, Pattonville Heights Middle School, "GaGa Ball for Pattonville Heights" - The grant paid for purchasing and assembling a GaGa Ball court at Heights. GaGa Ball is a non-threatening version of dodgeball. Students need quick reflexes and strategy to avoid other students getting them out. The teachers said GaGa Ball makes exercising fun and entertaining, especially for students who might not be interested in competitive or team sports. The teachers have been adding unconventional games like GaGa Ball into their activity rotations and said the games have been well-received by the students.
  • Kelli Dornfeld, Pattonville High School, "Pattonville Photographers" - The grant provided funds to purchase Nikon cameras so students in a new Digital Photography class would have the most advanced equipment in their exploration of their world through the medium of photography. This grant, in conjunction with art department and district funds, allows Pattonville students to have their own camera to use while enrolled in the class without any additional costs to families or students who are interested in digital photography.
  • Michael Dunsmoor, Pattonville High School, "Mission: Instrumental" - The grant provided funding to purchase non-traditional instruments such as electric violins/violas, electric guitars, amplifiers, a sound-system and percussion instruments for the orchestra program. Dunsmoor said, "Learning how to play an additional instrument (called doubling) is invaluable for someone who ever wishes to play in ensembles other than traditional orchestras. Arrangers and composers are more frequently writing alternative pieces that are available to schools and are often written for electric instruments." Without the new instruments, Pattonville would be unable to play these pieces.
  • Jon Fitzgerald with co-applicant Jessica Winterowd, Pattonville High School, "PHS Sensory Room" - The grant provided funding to purchase furniture, lighting and accessories to create a sensory room at the high school. A sensory room is a specially designed room which combines a range of stimuli to help individuals develop and engage their senses. These can include lights, colors, sounds and/or sensory soft play objects. The room will provide a relaxing, creative space for students who have sensory needs, staff members looking for a relaxing place to be creative and collaborative and classroom groups/student groups who are looking for a innovative and cooperative area.
  • Darrell Langston with co-applicant Jonathan Saettele, Pattonville High School, "Adding Innovation to Advance Manufacturing" - The grant provided funding to purchase a SawStop table saw in the high school manufacturing lab to improve safety for students. The safety technology in this saw can eliminate the concern of a student being seriously injured by coming into contact with the saw blade by stopping upon contact with human flesh.
  • Dawn Lynn, Willow Brook Elementary School, "Elementary Art Architecture Studio" - The grant provided funding to purchase a variety of three-dimensional building tools such as marble runs, magnetic boards, light table, magnetic blocks, transparent blocks, architectural Lego bricks, geometric pattern blocks, Zolo creative shapes and kinetic sand for use in Willow Brook's art studio. The materials will enhance the architecture studio that is part of the school's Choice-Based Art program.
  • Kim Zuccarello, Rose Acres Elementary School, "Seating for Success"Ó- The grant provided funds to purchase flexible seating furniture and materials for Zuccarello's third-grade classroom. Zuccarello said, "With flexible seating, students are given a choice about the type of seating that works best for them, and they have a voice in where they sit each day. Students are responsible to choose a place where they will do their best work. They are given the opportunity to use seats that encourage movement to help with concentration. By making their own choices and taking responsibility for those choices, students feel invested. They learn about collaboration and flexibility."
The PEF has awarded more than $250,000 in grants since it was established in 1994. This year, the foundation received grant funding support from the American Family Insurance Dreams Foundation. The PEF is dedicated to serving Pattonville children and the Pattonville school community by providing funding to support innovative educational programs that benefit students in Pattonville schools. Major fund-raisers as well as gifts from individuals, corporations and businesses provide the financial support for the foundation's work.