Congratulations to our Spring 2023 Grantees!
We’re thrilled to announce the Spring 2023 A to Z Fund grantees! Each of these projects will support Oakland students to dream bigger and explore possibilities they might not have imagined otherwise.
First Grade Zoo Field Trip
Oakland Academy of Knowledge – The Kindergarten through second-grade classes of Oakland Academy of Knowledge took an excursion to the California Academy of Sciences. It was field trip rich with new experiences, sights, and learning where students got to see many live animals, experience a humid indoor “rainforest”, and much more! For first graders, seeing penguins was especially exciting because they had learned so much about birds in their ELA module on “Birds’ Amazing Bodies.” It was such a special experience for them to touch a real ruby hummingbird egg (so tiny!) and a real ostrich egg (so large and strong!). Our visit to the California Academy of Sciences was truly a memorable and rich learning experience for our scholars.
Post Session Camping
Coliseum College Preparatory Academy – Educator Jason Werthmann at Coliseum College Preparatory Academy took his students on a post-session camping trip to Lake Berryessa where they spent two nights cooking meals, camping, hiking, and learning about regional water conservation systems and fishing. As an A to Z mini-grant award winner, Mr. Werthmann used his grant funds to purchase fishing rods and gear, as well as rent a boat, paddle boards, and kayaks. “This brought so much joy to students who got to spend 6hr on the lake tubing, paddling, and boating,” Mr. Wethmann said. “This was truly the highlight of their trip and will leave students with lasting memories, an appreciation of the outdoors and exposed them to activities and experiences that will shape their lives.”
Self Driving Cars of the Future – Today!
Latitude High School – Ms. Blanc’s Design and Engineering class aims to support real clients unpack real challenges they face – with self driving cars! With the support of an A to Z mini-grant, groups of two to three students built their own self-driving cars, coded them, tested them, and applied them to a mission determined by their client. “The impact of this grant has been truly transformative for our students,” Ms. Blanc says. “Through the process of designing, constructing, and programming these autonomous vehicles, our students have gained invaluable skills and experiences that will shape their futures.” Through this hands-on project, students honed their technical computer science and engineering skills, practiced critical thinking and problem solving, and formed lasting friendships.
City Arts & Lectures Speaker Series - Javier Zamora
Oakland Unified School District – A cohort of OUSD’s Elementary Newcomer Teacher Leaders (ENTLs) and other Teachers on Special Assignment (TSAs) in similar roles who support newcomers attended a City Arts and Lectures event with Javier Zamora, author of Solito, to hear him speak about his experiences as a newcomer to the United States. Grant funds also allowed every attending educator to take home a copy of the book and attend a final celebratory dinner to discuss the book, their reflections, and wonderings about the speaking engagement.