Virginia Hamilton Conference offers two outreach grants of $1,000 each


Each year, two grants up to $1000 each are available for projects to develop new classroom or library programs that raise awareness of multicultural literature among young people particularly, but not exclusively, through the works of Virginia Hamilton.

Each year we will award one grant to a K-12 teacher, and one will be awarded to a school library or youth services librarian in a public library.

Eligible applicants must currently work with or plan to work with children or adolescents in any grade from preschool through high school or in a public or school library.

Applicants must submit an application form, a professional reference and a proposal detailing the development of a new classroom or library program that:

* Promotes awareness of multicultural themes and issues through outstanding literature

* Illustrates the use of exemplary multicultural literature, particularly but not exclusively the works of Virginia Hamilton

* Demonstrates effective organization, methods and/or library service

* Includes a plan for documenting the development of the program throughout the grant period

* Cover sheet with your name, postal and e-mail address, telephone number and project title

* Detailed description of the proposed program that includes:

o Setting (classroom and/or library)

o Population (grade level and/or age range)

o Program goals

o Dates of the program and a detailed timeline of events

o Program procedures, methods and organization

* Evidence that the program will promote awareness of multicultural themes and issues

* A program budget

* Evidence of the use of exemplary multicultural literature; particularly, but not exclusively, the works of Virginia Hamilton

* Plan for documenting the program’s development throughout the grant period

* Program evaluation procedure

Award application deadline is February 28.

Grant recipients will be announced at the annual Virginia Hamilton Conference on Multicultural Literature for Youth at Kent State University, scheduled for April 9 and 10, 2015. For further information about the conference, please visit

The Virginia Hamilton and Arnold Adoff Creative Outreach Grant is sponsored by the College and Graduate School of Education, Health, and Human Services and the School of Library and Information Science in conjunction with the Kent State University Foundation and the Office of Continuing and Distance Education, with generous support from private donors and Scholastic Press.

Kyle Pearce on Gamifying Assessment Recording

Kyle Pearce has taken up the ideas from Jon Orr and Alice Keeler and added his own experiments …

I’ve shared some of the ways in which I’ve attempted to move towards assessing students based on learning goals (aka standards based grading) like some of the other folks in my district, but I’ve found that sharing one big public Google Sheet with students hasn’t inspired those who need it most to address the learning goals they are struggling with. For some time, I have thought about using cell referencing to create a personalized sheet for each student, but had no new ideas to really inspire making the change.

Jon’s spin-off of Alice’s gamification approach to assessment still focused on students being graded on individual learning goals, but the part that I really liked was the idea that students are to focus on consistently showing a deep understanding to earn 4-stars (level 4) in order to master the concept and earn a badge.

You can read the whole post here =>

What Matters? A Writing Competition for students in NSW and ACT schools in years 5-12


Each year the Whitlam Institute at the University of Western Sydney runs the annual What Matters? writing competition for students in NSW and ACT schools in years 5 to 12. Students are encouraged to write about issues that that are important to them including poverty; equality; the environment; disability; human rights; animal cruelty; bullying; the importance of family and community; tolerance – the list goes on.

The competition for 2015 has just opened, and closes on Wednesday 6 May.

For more details please see:

Mend my Broken Heart – A Valentine’s lesson idea on Addition and Subtraction


This activity is also perfect for matching coins & their values, contractions with the words they correlate to, etc.