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Grants, Awards & Freebies

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History seeks nominations for the National History Teacher of the Year award program. The program recognizes exceptional K–12 American history teachers across the country. The national winner chosen from among state winners receives a $10,000 prize presented at an award ceremony in their honor in New York City. State winners receive a $1,000 prize, an archive of classroom resources and recognition at a ceremony in their state. Eligibility: Any full-time educator of grades K–12 who teaches American history (including state and local history). The nominated teacher must have at least three years of classroom teaching experience and be planning to teach for at least one year following the award year.

DEADLINE: March 31.
CONTACT: info@gilderlehrman.org; Gilder Lehrman.

Music educators are invited to apply to become the 2021 winner of the Music Educator Award, which was established to recognize current educators (kindergarten through college, public and private schools) who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools. Winners are awarded a $10,000 personal honorarium, a matching school grant and a trip to the 2021 Grammy Awards. All finalists will receive a $1,000 honorarium, while semifinalists will receive a $500 honorarium. Anyone can nominate a teacher for the award. Nominated teachers will be sent a link to the application. Teachers do not need to be nominated in order to apply for the award. The application is a series of multiple-choice questions, which are auto-scored and ranked. The top 200 or so applicants are named quarterfinalists and invited to submit supplemental materials consisting of essays and videos. There will be a two-step screening of the quarterfinalists, after which 25 semifinalists will be selected. The Blue Ribbon Committee will then select the winner and nine finalists. The finalists will be announced in December and the winner will be announced during Grammy Week.

DEADLINE: March 31.
CONTACT: Music Educator Award.

Are you an educator with a class project that is short on funding but long on potential? Do you know a teacher looking for grant dollars? The Voya Unsung Heroes Awards Program could help you turn great ideas into reality for students. With more than $5 million in awarded grants, Voya Unsung Heroes has proven to be a popular program with educators. The program’s alumni have inspired success in the classroom and affected countless numbers of students. Each year, 100 educators are selected to receive $2,000 to help fund their innovative class projects. Three of those are chosen to receive the top awards of an additional $5,000, $10,000 and $25,000. All K–12 educators can apply.

DEADLINE: April 30.
CONTACT: Unsung Heroes.

Lemelson-MIT is seeking participants for its InvenTeams program. The program invites teams of high school students, educators and mentors to invent technological solutions to real-world problems of their own choosing. Funds: Grants up to $10,000. Eligibility: STEM educators. Funds may be allocated for research, materials and learning experiences related to the project. Funds may not be used to purchase capital equipment or professional services (such as intellectual property legal protection or engineering services). Funds may be used for an unrestricted teacher fellowship of $3,000 if the project is conducted as an extracurricular activity or club.

DEADLINE: April 8.
CONTACT: InvenTeams.

Each year the City Gardens Club of New York City pays program fees to a limited number of New York City public school teachers to attend activity-oriented summer workshops at the New York Botanical Garden; the Brooklyn Botanic Garden; the Queens Botanical Garden; the Horticultural Society of New York; a residential program on Hog Island, Maine, offered by the National Audubon Society; and a residential program at Shelburne Farms in Shelburne, Vermont. Scholarships cover the cost of tuition, P in-service credit where available, course materials and room and board when applicable. Elementary, middle and high school teachers who teach science in the classroom are eligible to apply.

DEADLINE: April 4 for Hog Island and Shelburne Farms; May 2 for the NYC programs.
CONTACT: Forms and descriptions of the programs are available at City Gardens Club.

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History seeks nominations for the National History Teacher of the Year award program. The program recognizes exceptional K–12 American history teachers across the country. The national winner chosen from among state winners receives a $10,000 prize presented at an award ceremony in their honor in New York City. State winners receive a $1,000 prize, an archive of classroom resources, and recognition at a ceremony in their state. Eligibility: Any full-time educator of grades K–12 who teaches American history (including state and local history). The nominated teacher must have at least three years of classroom teaching experience and be planning to teach for at least one year following the award year.

DEADLINE: March 31.
CONTACT: info@gilderlehrman.org; Gilder Lehrman.

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators requests applications for the Amber Brown Grant program. The program commemorates author and school speaker Paula Danziger by providing a school with an author or illustrator visit and new books to continue Paula’s love of connecting children with creative influences. Funds: One school will receive an all-expenses-paid visit by a well-respected children’s author or illustrator. The chosen school will also receive a $250 stipend to create a memorable day and $250 worth of books by the visiting author/illustrator. Eligibility: K–12 schools.

DEADLINE: April 15.
CONTACT: Amber Brown Grant.

Evergreen Packaging and KidsGardening.org are accepting entries for the annual Carton 2 Garden Contest. The contest awards $1,000 to $5,000 prizes to K–12 schools for garden creations featuring creative and sustainable uses for repurposed milk and juice cartons. Schools must collect and use at least 100 cartons for their creations. Schools with the most unique carton creations will be selected as winners. Your school does not need a garden to participate.

DEADLINE: Entries due April 1; winners announced April 30.
CONTACT: Carton 2 Garden

The L.I.F.T. Foundation is accepting applications for its minigrants program, which seeks to support educators in underserved and often underpaid communities with the purchase of classroom supplies and books. Grants range from $100 to $500. Eligibility: K–12 educators.

DEADLINE: Applications accepted throughout the academic year.
CONTACT: rsklift@gmail.com; L.I.F.T. Teacher Grants.

Educators are invited to an introduction of The Constitution Works program. TCW curriculum provides age-appropriate (grades 5–12) case materials, aligned with new DOE learning standards, developed around each of the three branches of government. Students are introduced to constitutional issues as they take on a role of attorney or Supreme Court justice in a First Amendment Supreme Court case, or as a senator applying the 14th Amendment to debate a bill in a Senate hearing. Students will study landmark Supreme Court cases and learn to apply the rules and laws established by the precedent cases to hypothetical fact patterns provided. In the culminating “role play” activity, at the U.S. Federal Bankruptcy Court in downtown Brooklyn, students will apply what they have learned in front of their teachers, family and friends. The professional development session will be held during the fall and spring semesters of this school year. A $765 fee includes professional development training, one class set of textbooks, one teacher’s manual and one role play at the bankruptcy court.

CONTACT: The Justice Resource Center at 212-580-5905; theconstitutionworks1989@gmail.com or the Justice Resource Center

Rakuten OverDrive announced that library patrons and students of participating public libraries and schools can borrow and read digital versions of Pokémon Adventures and Pokémon movie adaptations of manga titles published in English by VIZ Media. Public library patrons can access the titles via the Libby app or access them on a computer browser. Students of participating schools can use Sora, the student reading app, or obtain access via a computer browser.

CONTACT: OverDrive.

The Earthwatch Institute’s Teach Earth Fellowship program offers teachers the opportunity to step out of the classroom for an outdoor environmental learning experience. Fellows will embark on a fully funded seven- to 14-day science learning and professional development experience in natural landscapes on an Earthwatch Expedition. Eligibility: K–12 teachers. Fellows will also participate in five workshops led by an experienced senior fellow on transitioning the field experience to the classroom and will become part of the Teach Earth Alumni Network.

DEADLINE: 2020 deadline TBA; check the website and sign up to be notified when the application goes live.
CONTACT: info@earthwatch.org; Earthwatch.