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South Plains EC News

Learning From the Floor Up

Teacher mini-grant provides Lubbock-Cooper Central Elementary with interactive learning carpet

The Operation Round Up Board of Directors initiated a program offering small, $500 grants to teachers. Grants were available to K-12 teachers in math or language arts for the 2016-2017 school year. The funds are made available by South Plains Electric members who ask to have their monthly bill rounded up to the next dollar. The extra change, averaging only $6 per year, funds projects like the teacher mini-grants, scholarships and much more.

Operation Round Up was established in 1993 to help communities and individuals needing a hand up, not a hand out. The program’s tagline, “neighbors helping neighbors,” is at the heart of why South Plains Electric Cooperative exists.

During the past 24 years, Operation Round Up has helped hundreds of individuals and organizations. Many donations go unpublicized out of respect for the individual recipients. Operation Round Up, under the guidance of a 10-member board, sometimes works quietly to improve members’ lives.

Nine teacher mini-grants were awarded for the 2016-2017 school year. The recipients were: Amy Drake, Lubbock ISD; Amanda Dunn, Lubbock-Cooper ISD; Kara Gibson, Shallowater ISD; Ollie Hart, Abernathy ISD; Morgan Hisey, Lubbock-Cooper ISD; Jennifer Rodriquez, Lubbock-Cooper ISD; Lisa Sanders, Cotton Center ISD; Jana Simmons, Lubbock-Cooper ISD; and Carol Trent, Shallowater ISD.

If all of our members were participating in Operation Round Up, we would have over $200,000 a year to give back to our local communities. You can sign up for Operation Round Up online or call 806.775.7766. You may also sign up by checking the Operation Round Up box on your monthly bill.

There are not enough words to express how grateful I am for South Plains Electric Cooperative and the grant money they award teachers. Because of this funding, I purchased an interactive learning carpet and the manipulatives available for it.

Students Eager To Learn

As an elementary teacher, I am constantly trying to find ways to keep students engaged and mobile in my classroom. Students’ attention spans are short, therefore activity changes and moving around the classroom is imperative to make learning happen. The carpet has been a wonderful tool in my math classroom.

The interactive learning carpet requires students to get up and move around the classroom. Coordinate grid is one of the units I teach and my students must know how to move on the grid when given directions.

In addition to answering the questions I ask them, my students also use the interactive carpet to create ordered pairs and write their own directions for movement. My students love being able to physically place and move the ordered pairs.

The interactive learning carpet is very versatile. I have also been able to incorporate the learning carpet into my area and perimeter units. The prolonged personal interaction helps keep my students engaged and learning. My students also learned about shapes by using the learning carpet.

Thanks, Thanks and More Thanks

Without the partnership with SPEC, the interactive learning carpet and manipulatives would have been too expensive to purchase. My students and I are so thankful for SPEC and their help. We love our carpet!