Congratulations to Jillian Cram, Kelly Vining, Heather Rose, Katrina Thomas, Malinda Burnett, Dale Scrivener, Linda Lutomski, Kelle Bruno, Rachael Christiansen, and Karla Parker Choat!
The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club Teacher Mini Grant Program is a long-standing annual program for our club and this year was no different.  The mini grant program awards a limited number of grants with a maximum award of $400 for special classroom projects to individual teachers in kindergarten through twelfth grade in Archuleta County.  The mini grant provides working capital to innovative teachers who want to develop new ideas to enrich the student classroom experience.  The mini grants also provide funds to teachers for materials or projects that would not otherwise be available through the school district or for teachers that would otherwise have to use their own money to fund them.  
Thirteen applications were received from six different schools and ten teachers were selected.  We are so fortunate to have such innovative and creative teachers with the desire to inspire and expand the learning opportunities for our children.
Some of the interesting and fun projects we were able to fund included purchasing microscopes for science classes, reading intervention materials for phonics skills, 3-D wooden puzzles for Art class incorporating science, technology, math, and language, and yes, boomwhackers! Three teachers in the Middle and Family School joined together to apply for this purchase to expand their collection of boonwhackers to teach different aspects of music theory to over 200 students.  Add to that, cameras for learning about digital photography and creating digital portfolios, and an egg incubator to give the students the opportunity to learn about the life cycle of a chicken!
To make our available funds go to as many teachers as possible, we choose to partially fund some requests and provide some materials through gathering donations.  For instance, a friend of Rotary constructed an adjustable stand for a grow light for a teacher who wanted to create a tabletop garden. Hand sewing kits for use in teaching life skills are being made through donations by Rotarians along with some seed money to keep them replenished.  Some reading books and materials were requested that we were able to refer to Three Rivers Educational Foundation to provide to the teachers at no cost.
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is proud to support our wonderful teachers who have worked so hard, especially this year, to excite and educate our children!