California Educator

March 2012

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 27 of 43

MAKING A DIFFERENCE Students focus on Native American culture with a CTA Institute for Teaching grant Apply for an IFT Grant You have a creative idea for an innova- tive project for your students, but all you need is the extra cash to make it a reality. That's where CTA's Institute for Teaching can help! The IFT's 2012-13 Grant Program is accepting applications now for individual grants of up to $5,000 and chapter grants of up to $20,000 from CTA members, teacher teams and local CTA chapters for next school year. "IFT is eager to assist projects and programs that demonstrate the efficacy of teacher-driven approaches to school change," says IFT Director Dick Gale. The grant application deadline is April 30. Gale says a grant selection commit- tee composed of teachers from around the state will review the applications in May for grants that will be awarded in June. MORE INFO Potter Valley TA member Carrie Mayfield, Potter Valley Classified Employees Association President Duval "Sam" Phillips, and PVTA President Stephanie Bearden are using a CTA Institute for Teaching grant to work with students in the district's Multicultural Club to enhance awareness of the area's Pomo culture. "WORKING WITH my colleagues, school maintenance employee Sam Phillips, art teacher Carrie Mayfield, and the students in our Potter Valley Multicultural Club has been the best thing I have experienced as a teacher in years," says Potter Valley Teach- ers Association President Stephanie Bearden. Relying primarily on funds from a CTA Institute for Teaching grant, Bearden, Phil- lips and Mayfield are engaging their rural Northern California students in a series of projects that focus on Native American cul- ture, primarily the history and culture of the area's Pomo people. After researching with tribal officials and at area museums, art teacher Mayfield worked with club students and with Phillips, a member of the Pomo people and president of the Potter Valley Classified Employees Association, to create and mount a mural featuring intricate Pomo basket designs indigenous to the area (shown at right). A large group of students from local schools, educators, community members and Pomo representatives participated in the Novem- ber 2011 mural unveiling ceremony. "As 28 California Educator / March 2012 a nonnative artist, the most important thing to me in creating the design was accuracy to the native culture," says Mayfield. "The mural needed to be more than just a pretty picture on the wall in order to help educate our stu- dents about the deeper history of the area." Currently, Mayfield is working with other teachers at the school to develop cur- riculum to help students better understand the mural and other aspects of local Native American culture. "The mural is just the For complete details, including application forms, visit first step in a long journey this community must make to help recognize and honor the earliest inhabitants of our valley so that their descendants, including our students, may feel pride in their heritage, their culture and themselves," says Mayfield. "We are so appreciative of the Institute for Teaching grant," says Bearden. "In addition to the mural, it has enabled us to fund field trips and other experiences for our students." By Bill Guy

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of California Educator - March 2012