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Local teachers receive donations for educational projects

by Anna Campbell | December 1, 2021 at 4:00 a.m.

Six area teachers were awarded donations for their educational programs through the Limeades for Learning Fall Voting Campaign sponsored by Sonic Drive-in and DonorsChoose.

The campaign, now in its 13th year, has resulted in the donation of more than $20 million to 36,000 classrooms. Sonic invited fans to vote online for their favorite public school teacher projects from Sept. 27-Oct. 24, according to a news release.

Four Jefferson City teachers received a total of $4,650.

Jill Verslues, of Blair Oaks Middle School, received funding for two projects: "Code It, Roll It!" in which students will use Sphero Bolt Robots to learn about coding and careers that involve the skill, and "Robotics Boost," which will be used to start a school robotics club using the Lego Boost Robotics and Coding building set.

Morgan Trachsel, of South Elementary School, also received funding for two projects. "Diverse Language Materials" will help elementary-age students with autism, speech sound disorder, and language impairment by providing fun and colorful materials to teach language concepts. "Diverse Articulation Materials" will provide materials to help these students learn difficult speech sounds like "s," "r" and "l."

The campaign awarded Lisa Dierking, of Southwest Early Childhood Center, funding for a project that would provide toys, bedding and other supplies for taking care of Shoney, the school's therapy dog, who helps motivate and calm children.

The campaign awarded funding for three projects to Amy Ambrose, of West Elementary School. "Math Review Tools" will provide kits including dry erase boards, beads and other items to help students learn math and counting. "Little Literacy Learners" will provide books and toys to help students learn letters and connect with books. "Lifetime of Memories" provides supplies for theme learning days like camping days and beach days.

Two teachers in Holts Summit received $4,777.

The campaign awarded funding for four projects to Holly Schaefer, of North Elementary School. "Winning with Word Work" provides materials to help kindergarten students work with words. "Rolling to Recess" provides a cart to transport recess supplies. "Growing Reading Skills with Pioneer Valley" is a two-project effort that provides level-appropriate books to be used in small-group reading.

Kourtney Griggs, of North Elementary School, received funding for four projects as well. "Kindergarten Calm Down Corner" will provide a place where students can go and set a five-minute or less timer, take something from the stress relief and sensory toy basket to calm down and then return to learning. "Kindergarten Celebrations & More" will provide supplies for classroom celebrations and math review tools. "Power Through Reading with Pioneer Valley" and "Power Through Reading and Writing with Pioneer Valley" will provide level-appropriate books to help students read, write and become interested in books.

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