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Awarded Grant Summaries

Heidi Elliot, STEM Coordinator, 2017-2018 School Year

Description & Need:
As CPS moves forward with our STEM Academy and the necessary work-based learning elements necessary for the STEM Academy or students will increase the number of opportunities they will be in our local industries. When our students are receiving a business tour, completing job shadowing, field experiences, simulations, etc. it is essential for them not only to see what is being shown to them but also to hear what is being said. Unfortunately, at times the environment itself can create hearing difficulties. Equipment, machines, and other voices can combine to make hearing remarkably difficult. Even when touring in a small group it can be incredibly difficult to hear the guide if you are not within a few feet of the guide. By utilizing a noise cancelling tour system we will ensure our students receive the full experience that has been created for them between the business, industry, and education no matter if they are next to the guide or the last one in the small group. 

How project meets Instruction Goals and Mission Statement:
This project meets the CPS instructional goal and mission statement of engaging all learners for success by giving them the ability to truly hear and experience each opportunity that is set up. Utilizing this technology will allow students to hear and provide students with a strong experience and understanding of all aspects of an industry, it will improve and expand the use of technology, and it could help provide professional development to teachers, administrators, and career guidance counselors. 

Major Objectives: 
The major objective of this project is to ensure students are receiving the best work-based learning opportunities and teachers are keeping up to date with current industry related practices and experiences by truly being able to hear during their experiences. It will allow for students to connect the academic disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. We would like to utilize these devices by averaging at least 15 students using them once a month once we have the devices in hand. 

Teaching Methods:
Work-based learning is an instructional strategy that prepares all students for success in careers through direct engagement with industry and community professionals. Giving students and teachers a behind the scenes look at a company and their product can help establish the connection between academics and careers. People are naturally curious and want to know how things are made and what makes them work. When our students are receiving a business tour, completing job shadowing, field experiences, simulations, etc. it is essential for them not only to see what is being shown to them but also to hear what is being said. Utilizing these devices will allow for a greater understanding within each experience. Teachers will be able to utilize the information observed at each experience in their lectures and discussions with students back in the classroom after the experiences.

Grade Level Impacted:
Students in grade 9-12 will initially be affected by this project. We would like to utilize these devices by averaging at least 15 students using them once a month once we have devices in hand. There is a large There is a large potential for many others to use this devices. Use will not be limited to students in grades 9-12 but will be given first priority. Any work-based experience that is affiliated with CPS could utilize these devices. Use of these devices will be monitored through the CPS STEM Career Coordinator. 

Additional Materials: 
Unfortunately, $1,000 will not pay for the initial 15 person system. However, it will pay for the additional transmitters and/or receivers that can be added to a system. Through Perkins funding and the building budget the main system will be purchased and kept in working condition. 

Project Evaluation:
After each use of these devices a survey will be conducted through the STEM Career Coordinator to determine the effectiveness of the devices. Participants will be asked if the devices made a difference in their work-based learning opportunity and specifically if it enhanced their ability to be engaged. These surveys will track the type of user, where it was used, and the effectiveness of the devices. 

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