Last month, we encouraged our educators to post a project on DonorsChoose.org. If you don’t already know it, it’s a simple fundraising platform that provides educators with an easy way to get supplies for your classroom, library or makerspace. We challenged them to come up with an awesome, amazing, inspirational classroom project or lesson plan that incorporates littleBits and gets kids problem-solving, iterating, and building creatively. While every teacher would hopefully get their ideas funded, we decided to make it a little more interesting with a grand prize. One lucky educator would win a $2000 littleBits Workshop Set.
And boy, were we blown away by the amazing contest turnout! In total, 66 educators created projects involving littleBits on DonorsChoose.org. During the contest, 31 projects were fully funded by donors who visited the site, with many more projects on their way to getting funding. Our rockstar judges, Tim Hammil, Leah Gilliam, and Mitch Feinberg had to choose from many inspiring projects.
The Big Winner
Our impartial judges took a look at each submission, weighing its scope, the lesson plan, its impact, and the creativity of the project. After a difficult session, it was decided. Mr. Pomeroy’s classroom is the winner! Mr. Pomeroy teaches physical education, math, science, and coding to 9th – 12th graders at a juvenile justice facility. The Wyoming Boys School is rolling out a technology program to teach coding, engineering, and aeronautics. Mr. Pomeroy chose littleBits to help with the STEM curriculum.
As Mr. Pomeroy explained,
“I teach in a Juvenile Justice facility, and most of my students have not had a good experience with the education system. Most of them have low expectations for themselves and their future. The introduction of new technology and its applications opens their eyes to possibilities they have not dreamed of.”
We hope that the extra boost will help make a big impact at the Wyoming Boys School!
There are still many projects that need funding, all of which will make an impact on children’s lives and help them learn about STEM, unleash their creativity, and have fun exploring technology. Here are some inspiring projects that got fully funded or need a bit more help to get funded.
1. New Millennials Recreating Chicago’s World Fair
“Little Bits will be used collaboratively amongst the entire third grade team. In third grade students learn all about the history of Chicago as part of their social studies curriculum. Every year my students recreate the famous Chicago World’s Fair, but with a modern twist… Now imagine a year where students can combine their everyday materials with electronic technology to create innovative exhibits that will make their dreams a reality. This is what I aspire to achieve with the help of Little Bits!” – Ms. Saleh, Belding Elementary School, Chicago, IL
“Gadget Girls develop leadership, creative thinking, and problem-solving skills. Our goal is to empower girls at a young age to pursue STEM-related career pathways. Gadget Girls is a place for girls to learn about engineering fields through exploration and design…By providing these girls with the tools they need, they will be able to continue to be the creative innovators that they are, as they discover and explore new concepts through hands-on experiences.” – Ms. Malloy, Christie Elementary School, Plano, TX
“Each morning, as soon as students are allowed in the building, I have students waiting in line to get in our library and work in our makerspace. They create and build everything from our supply of purchased and recycled materials. Our library positively hums with students engaged in making. Three new Little Bits Kits will allow our students to incorporate electronics in their projects. Houses will have lights and doorbells, cars will use sensors to move — the possibilities are endless.” – Mrs. Ysteboe, Western Middle School, Elon, NC