Education Foundation Awards Grants

2015-16-WEF-Grant-RecipientsThe new school year is off to a great start and the Warwick Education Foundation (WEF) is pleased to be part of it – making new and exciting learning opportunities available for Warwick students the year.  Grant recipients were recognized at the Opening Day Teacher In service program.

The Warwick Education Foundation awarded grants totaling $48,099 to teachers in the Warwick School District for 2015-16.  Thirty-nine teachers received grant funding to implement 20 innovative educational programs and experiences this school year.  Students in all six Warwick schools, elementary through high school, will experience the new programs. Continue reading

Speaking of Education … Warwick beta-tests business education software


By Katie Grisbacher

Computing skills, entrepreneurship, business law, medical records, job seeking skills, financial literacy.

These are all part of the Business&ITCenter21 curriculum purchased by the Warwick HS business education department through a Warwick Education Foundation (WEF) Innovative Education Grant this past year. The curriculum and accompanying software was developed by Applied Educational Solutions (AES), a Lititz company, as an extension of a business curriculum used by Warwick for over a decade.

“We have worked with this company for years,” said Sandy Stehman, business teacher. “Their original software was pc-based. For students to work on the software, they had to be in the classroom, they couldn’t work at home.”

Now, with the new cloud-based software, students can work anywhere, even from home on a snow day, noted Dr. Judy Drager-McCoy, former head of the business department, who first discovered the AES software for Warwick years ago.
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Speaking of Education … Geometer’s Sketchpad

Geometer's-SketchpadBy Katie Grisbacher

Warwick High School math teachers Emily Diem, Mike Neuman, Jeff Wile, and Lauren Sangrey teamed up to apply for a grant to purchase Geometer’s Sketchpad (GSP), a software program that allows students to create geometric figures and manipulate them.

“GSP is a great source for visual learners in the classroom,” said Sangrey, “because students are able to move the shapes on the screen and see how certain aspects of the shape change or stay the same.”

“It’s cool to see the shapes visually,” said Melissa Gibble, a 9th grade student in Mr. Neuman’s geometry class. “You can move the angles and measure the change that occurs in real time.”
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Author Kate Messner inspires students to write

Photo with library stacks: Back row (left to right), Matthew Geib, Sophia Barbas, Connor Eisenbach, Seth Franqui, Larissa Bottner, Jaylee Stringham. Front row (left to right,) Kendall Eby, Kate Messner, Ben DuBosq

By Katie Grisbacher

Spunky, inquisitive, adventurous, dedicated, creative, funny … that’s how kids described Kate Messner, the popular children’s book author who visited Warwick elementary schools March 9-11 through a grant from the Warwick Education Foundation.

Messner, a former 7th grade English teacher, has 16 books in print (and about 15 in progress, she says), including picture books published by Chronicle Books, stand-alone middle grade books published by Bloomsburg, and a number of children’s book series published by Scholastic. Continue reading

One School, One Book

Photo:   John Beck students celebrate completion of the One School, One Book program, funded by the Warwick Education Foundation.

By Katie Grisbacher

For the fourth year in a row, the whole school community at John Beck Elementary is reading together … all the same book! In a program funded by Warwick Education Foundation Innovative Education Grants, John Beck students and families have read books such as Trumpet of the Swan, by E.B. White, and Because of Winn Dixie, by Kate DiCamillo.

One School, One Book is the flagship program of Read to Them, a non-profit with a mission to create a culture of literacy in every home.

“One School, One Book is a unique program in that children at all grade levels (listen) to the same book,” wrote Colleen Heckman, learning facilitator at John Beck, in a letter to parents. “Daring as this may seem, it actually makes educational sense. Reading professionals recommend reading material out loud that is beyond a child’s reading level.” Continue reading

Stormy Weather

By Katie Grisbacher

IMG_8943Students cheered and laughed throughout a program entitled, “How to Build A Storm: The Weather Show,” presented by the Franklin Institute last week at all four Warwick Elementary Schools. The program was funded by a grant from the Warwick Education Foundation, another example of the innovative and exciting educational experiences funded by the WEF.

With props including a camp stove, a stunt bucket, and liquid nitrogen, Traveling Science Presenter Nathaniel Westover (Mr. Nate) demonstrated convection, evaporative cooling, condensation, precipitation, and air pressure to appreciative audiences.

“The Franklin Institute assembly was very fascinating, inspiring, and that’s the most things I learned new in a day so far,” said Catherine Olson, fourth grader at John Beck Elementary. “There are a couple of things I learned from the assembly. Number one, fire is awesome. Number two, liquid nitrogen is very, very, very cold: 350 degrees below.”

Mr. Nate laid down safety rules repeatedly throughout the presentation – “Please do not touch anything unless I give you permission, even if it lands in your lap, next to you, or on your neighbor’s hair” – and provided plenty of hands-on opportunities and visual excitement.

To demonstrate convection, Mr. Nate brought out a giant silver mylar balloon he dubbed “Lady Gaga’s underpants.” Students roared with laughter as Mr. Nate placed the enormous silver balloon on his head. “You’ll see bald guys like me wearing these on the beach next year, to keep the sun off.”

Mr. Nate heated the air in the balloon using a little camp stove. On the count of three, the giant silver balloon rose to the rafters of the gym ceiling, then slowly floated down as it cooled.

Next came a demonstration of evaporative cooling. Mr. Nate laughed maniacally as he turned on a huge air blower and spritzed water all over six student volunteers with hair blowing everywhere. “Wind steals cold from your skin. On the weather report, they call that wind chill.”

Before showing condensation, Mr. Nate asked kids for a promise to stay “criss-cross applesauce” in their seats and for adults to clear a path. Then he poured water and liquid nitrogen into a bucket and ran around the room (maniacal laugh), with steam billowing behind him.

“My favorite parts were when he made a cloud,” said Olson. “I also liked it when he made a mini-tornado. I’d love to start studying tornados. They sound very fascinating. This has definitely sparked my interest in being a scientist.”

Katie Grisbacher is a freelance writer and editor living in Lititz. She welcomes your comments at For more information on the Warwick Education Foundation visit or contact Executive Director Barbara Mobley at