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This month, Tri-County EMC surprised 22 local teachers with $29,889.34 in educational grants. Since 2008, Tri-County Electric Membership Cooperative has provided nearly $130,000 in grants to local schools. Funded by unclaimed capital credits, the grants help teachers improve education in their classrooms through innovative projects that would otherwise not be funded. Georgia certified public or private school teachers in grades Pre-K through 12 in Baldwin, Jones, Putnam, Twiggs and Wilkinson counties qualify to apply.

Outside judges evaluated the blind applications for innovation, goals, objectives, student involvement and budget. A total of 22 grants were funded. Thanks to all teachers who applied in 2013-2014 and we look forward to seeing your applications in 2014-2015. The Bright Ideas Grant winners are listed below.


Baldwin County

Mandy Hopkins, Midway Elementary School
iPads Improving Performance and Developing Students with Technology: $1,065.00
This project will create a literacy and math center with iPads to satisfy students desire to “play on the computer” while learning using educational apps and online games.

Katrina Veal, Blandy Hills Elementary School

Technology: The New 21st Century Learning: $1,176.00
This project will allow students to make real-life connections in Math, Science and Reading using Android Tablets.

Damita Jones, Baldwin High School

Bringing Learning to the 21st Century: $1,452.86
This project will enable at-risk students to improve their math calculation and reasoning through the utilization of calculators and a computer equipped with math software.



Jones County

Amy London, Extra, Turner Woods Elementary School

Extra, Extra, Write All About It!: $1,494.00
Students will create a student newspaper by writing editorial articles, feature stories and news articles to strengthen their writing skills. iPads will be used to interview, write, and publish the newspaper digitally as well as in print.

Laurie Griffin, Jones County 9th Grade Academy

Scratching the Surface: Using Technology in the Family and Consumer Science Pathway: $1,468.97
With this project, students in the Family and Consumer Science pathway will be able to use Microsoft Surface tablets to conduct research, create presentations and watch video demonstrations in class. The tablets will be loaded with apps to support human growth and development and nutrition.

Aimee Lundy, Dames Ferry Elementary School

Getting Fired Up for Learning: $1,414.70
Kindle Fires will be used to provide extra practice for students in reading and math and assist in science learning with virtual lab and other explorations.

Tetse Hooten, Gray Station Middle School

The Case of the Missing VersaTiles: $1,446.78
This will allow students to complete VersaTiles, a math lab incorporating the challenge of a puzzle. Research shows the use of VersaTiles in the classroom can increase student proficiency of high-stakes assessments up to 72%.

Renee Kitchens & Crystal Newby, Jones County High School
I’ve Got A Story To Tell: An Intergenerational Writing Project: $1,217.13
Students will interview senior citizens in the community about their hopes, goals and community and societal changes over their lives. Students will then publish a book and use the recorded interviews to create a digital storytelling project.

Melinda Kitchens, Gray Station Elementary School

The iPad: Close Reading At Our Fingertips: $1,498.00
This project will allow students to use iPads to locate, read and reflect on current event articles. The goal is to increase student engagement by promoting positive and engaging discussions.

Cathy Logue, Dames Ferry Elementary School

Motivating and Moving Students With Technology: $1,493.70
This project will provide Kindles for the classroom to provide students with access to apps and the Internet while reinforcing standards in all curriculum areas. With these portable tablets, the class will be able to take learning outside the classroom and incorporate new ways of learning.

Heather Jackson, Gray Elementary School
ABCs and 123s: $730.01
This project will divide reading, math, animated literacy and enrichment time into centers that provide students with materials to learn with a hands on approach and make real world connections.

Jennifer Holland, Dames Ferry Elementary School

iPads for All Learners: Integrating iPads into Math and Writing: $1,495.00
This project will allow students to use iPads to practice math skills and create narrative, informative and persuasive writing.

Putnam County

Wendy Grimes-Little, Putnam County Middle School
What’s the Buzz About Academic Bowls: $1,452.00
Students in an English/Language Arts class will apply academic knowledge and compete on a team in an academic bowl learning environment.

Katherine Reid, Putnam County High School

Environmental Mindset Collaboration Project: $1,494.02
This project will give students hands-on experiences to help them understand minute entities of environmental science and the importance of sustaining the natural world around them.

Linda Walker, Putnam County Elementary School

Net Surfing for Scholars: $1,500
This project will fund the creation of a Chromebook mobile lab to be used by 5th grade Social Studies Classes. This will give students access to more resources for research and presentations.

Shannon Hooks, Gatewood School

Give a Book, Give a Voice, Get a Love for Reading: $1,500.00
Students will host a book drive to collect books for other children in the community. The students will then record and create videos of themselves reading those books using iPads. The videos will be uploaded to a website so the students that receive the donated book will be able to watch the video online and read along with the other student.

Jannis Wallace, Putnam County Primary School

iPads for the Kindergarten Classroom: $1,377.90
This project will allow Kindergartners to become more confident in their abilities to work with technology while improving academic skills. Students will use iPads with interactive apps during large group, small group and independent learning activities.

Gloria Hood, Putnam County Middle School
S.P.A.R.K. Students Preparing and Reviewing Math Via Kindle : $1,369.52
Students will be able to access Kindles in the classroom to use tutorial websites and math applications and games helping them to develop critical thinking in the math reasoning process.

Dawn Wicker, Putnam County Primary School
iPad and iPod in Physical Education – the New Clipboard: $1,068.80
This project will eliminate the downtime during PE classes. The class will be able to use iPads for counters, timers, team developing, instant feedback of the state Fitnessgram requirement and SPARK rubric results.

Mary Sue McMichael, Putnam County Middle School

We’ve Got This Math All Sewn Up!: $1,500.00
In this project, students will use their knowledge of transformational geometry and measurement to design and create quilt blocks. These quilt blocks will be sewn together to create class quilts that will be displayed throughout the school.

Holly Hardie, Putnam County Primary School

Techno-Kinders: iPads in the Classroom for Reading and Math: $1,270.95
This project will provide iPads for an inclusion classroom allowing students to develop fine motor skills while reviewing lessons from class using educational apps.

Wilkinson County

Connie Phillips, Wilkinson County Elementary School
Nook a Book: $1,404.00
This project will provide Nooks in the classroom that will allow students to have access to grade appropriate reading that targets fluency, vocabulary and comprehension. Students will be pre-tested and post-tested to ensure their achievement in reading is approving which will in turn enhance their writing abilities.

About Tri-County EMC:
Tri-County Electric Membership Corporation is a member-owned electric cooperative serving more than 21,025 accounts in Baldwin, Bibb, Jasper, Jones, Morgan, Putnam, Twiggs and Wilkinson County. The cooperative, chartered in 1939, is headquartered in Gray, Georgia and has a district office in Eatonton and a payment center in Milledgeville. Tri-County EMC is governed by a nine-member board of directors elected by and from the cooperative's customer/members.

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