Prentiss Grants Awarded to Lower School Teachers

In mid-January of this year, four teachers in the Hockaday Lower School Department received Prentiss Grants: Julie Harrison, Karen Roberts, Kelly Turner and Martha Zavaleta. The Prentiss Grant, which funds educational international trips for teaching, is awarded on an application basis and is used to fund summer educational op­portunities for teachers.

With the trips just two months away, the teachers have created ways to bring their ex­periences back to the classroom.

Turner, a second grade teacher, who will be traveling to Greece, teaches about Greece in her classroom and hopes that by creating a blog, she can give her students a better understanding of the country.

“I’m excited to get some first-hand experience and then bring it back to my students,” Turner said. “We usually use pictures from online for the class, but I think first-hand pho­tos will be better.”

Harrison, who also teaches second grade, will be traveling to Greece with Turner. She said that she and Turner have the opportunity to create their own itinerary while in Greece.

“[Turner] and I are making our own program, so I’m really excited to explore,” Harrison said. “I want to bring back some arti­facts, something small enough that also won’t break, to show the girls. And, of course, plenty of stories as well. Even if we are just hiking around somewhere, I’d like to really be able to describe for my students what it is like.”

Zavaleta plans to attend the Chautauqua Institution during the Redefining Europe Session in Chautauqua, New York. In this program, she will learn about European culture and hear lec­tures regarding topical issues.

Roberts will be participat­ing in a research program con­ducted by the Little Cayman Research Centre in the Cayman Islands. She will be aiding scien­tists in their coral reef research, mainly recording data and re­searching. She hopes that she can inspire her students with this trip.

“I want my students to learn to take risks,” Roberts said. “I want them to learn to get out of their comfort zone and to never stop learning.”

– Alexis Espinosa