Mountain View-based Google announced Tuesday the local recipients of its 2013 Home, Sweet Home.Twelve organizations either in Mountain View or with an affiliation to the city will receive funds from the Internet giant. The Home, Sweet Home grant is given to an organization that promotes Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education for K-12 students; closing the digital divide and reducing carbon footprint or emissions.
The following organization—all nominated by a Google employee—will receive grants from Google:
- ACE works with high school youth in Mountain View and across the Bay Area, providing climate science education and promoting STEM hands-on learning. ACE inspires youth to take action on climate change, tackling carbon-reducing initiatives in their schools, communities and beyond. With support from Google’’s Home Sweet Home grant, ACE will support a local student leader, with help by a team of his/her peers from Mountain View, to tap into their potential to develop and implement an innovative solution for reducing carbon and taking action on climate change that relates to the most pressing needs in their school or community.
- With programs such as Accelerated Math, Khan Academy online labs, OdysseyWare, the science and English departments, Alta Vista High School currently does not possess the technology to most efficiently and effectively meet student needs. A Google Home, Sweet Home technology grant will further enrich Alta Vista’ students’’ high school learning experience, providing them access to all the educational resources afforded to the students attending the district's comprehensive high schools. Funds will be used to purchase hardware for the school's technology center including desktops, printers, and scanners.
- As a leader in civic engagement, Greenbelt Alliance will be building out the platform, Our Backyard, which includes an innovative combination of web and mobile technology, community management, and traditional person-to-person engagement to encourage a more informed and engaged community. Our Backyard will not only help demystify the process of civic engagement, but it has the potential to disrupt traditional community engagement models, creating an effective system in which individuals can connect with their neighbors and meaningfully impact land use issues in their communities. Our Backyard will impact those who are currently underrepresented in local planning efforts, while helping all people who live or work in Mountain View. By amplifying the voices of the community and addressing their concerns, Our Backyard will help Mountain View become an even better place for everyone to live, work, and play.
- Google’s Home, Sweet Home grant will be use toward enriching the science program at Huff Elementary across all grades, specifically in the area of hands on research through experiments and literature support. In total, the investment of this grant would enable over 500 students to build a stronger foundation in science for a school year. The grant will allow the Huff PTA to purchase books for Full Open Science System (FOSS) kit alignment for grades K-2. FOSS is a research-based science curriculum for grades K–8 developed at the Lawrence Hall of Science, University of California at Berkeley. The grant will also enable Huff to hire a science professional for the upper grades. Under the guidance of the science professional, the students can build a stronger foundation in science and literature through hands on experiments and research, collaboration and journaling their findings.
- Landels Elementary PTA is faced with the challenge of supporting the school as it transitions to more project-based learning, and aligns with the Common Core State Standards. Landels PTA will use Google’s Home Sweet Home grant to purchase a computer cart with 35 laptops. This will provide students with access to up-to-date technology to facilitate project-based learning and to permit differentiated instruction in a variety of subject areas, most notably mathematics.
- Living Classroom connects students in grades K-8 to the natural world through hands-on, inquiry- and nature-based lessons that teach important concepts in science and math. Living Classroom lessons make science and math relevant by utilizing living things--plants and animals in edible, experimental and native habitat gardens--as the subject of experiment, observation, measurement and study. Living Classroom provides lesson plans and kits, lesson scheduling software and trained docents to deliver meaningful and impactful lessons that increase children's understanding and appreciation of nature, or environmental literacy. Living Classroom curriculum meets State Standards, the science lessons are also correlated with FOSS science modules and tie in seamlessly with classroom curriculum. Google’s Home Sweet Home grant will allow Living Classroom to hire a curriculum consultant to revise and update all 50 Living Classroom lessons to align with Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards and to develop 10 additional lessons for our Kindergarten, 1st, 4th and 5th grade curriculum. Funds will also be used to develop two new native habitat gardens in the MVWSD to enable lessons on ecology, habitats, biodiversity, botany and ethnobotany as well as other subjects.
- Google’s Home Sweet Home grant will allow students with no computer access at home to begin to learn basic computer literacy. Funds will be used to make the school's computer lab available daily and will be used to provide focused after-school enrichment programs for students who do not have computers at home. A teacher would be hired to provide 1 hour of after-school technology education/enrichment, for 20-25 students per grade level 4 days per week.
- Google’s Home Sweet Home Grant will support MVCT’s Project Connect: Engaged Community Citizens program. This program is designed to benefit the underserved population of youth and adults in Mountain View and surrounding areas by providing social inclusion through technology training. Project Connect is an opportunity for KMVT to expand its training opportunities and create more focused multilingual digital literacy training programs that are essential for Mountain View residents while keeping the community engaged through specialized programs. KMVT’s strong partnerships with local nonprofit organizations including Day Workers Center, CSA, Cornerstone Project, School Districts and the Mountain View Senior Center, will be critical to Project Connects’ focused programs in order to achieve an engaged citizenry; especially as new technologies continue to emerge. This program focuses on increasing digital access and understanding while learning basic computer skills on laptops, how to create resumes, media literacy and social media training.
- SETI’s Institute's public radio education program, Big Picture Science, describes modern research through lively and intelligent storytelling. The program is useful to foster STEM interest and expertise –for both K-12 students and the public. The program is used by educators and teachers in classrooms worldwide. Funds provided through Google’s Home Sweet Home grant will be used to support the program's ability to report from the field and the labs. Funds will support transportation to labs, observatories, and field-work sites, greater use of ISDN lines for interviews that are not in the field, and on-the-scene reports by interns and science journalists from major conferences, such as the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Astronomical Society and the American Geophysical Union.
- Google’s Home Sweet Home grant will support (1) the Bicycle Exchange's repair workday expenses for parts, tools and supplies (2) safety and repair education programs and (3) the organization's growing Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program.
- The Tech Museum’’s mission is to inspire the innovator in everyone. The organization does this by bringing STEM education to life. They engage students in informal STEM learning through provocative exhibits and educational IMAX features and in formal STEM learning through hands-on science labs – all aimed at igniting student interest in STEM and fostering their pursuit of science and technology careers. The Tech provides scholarship-funded field trips for all schools, serving about 120,000 students per year. Google’s Home Sweet Home grant would support this scholarship fund to benefit the hundreds of students specifically from Mountain View who visit The Tech with their classmates each year. The grant will also fund hands-on science labs and educational IMAX screenings for students from Mountain View’s Title 1 schools so these underserved students can engage in even deeper STEM learning. Over the past three school years, an average of 900 Mountain View students visited The Tech each year. This program directly supports STEM learning for Mountain View students. Funds will cover 87% of the costs of serving students from Mountain View's low-income Title 1 schools. Support to the students will include admission, hands-on labs, IMAX and transportation.
- Google’s Home Sweet Home grant will help fund the school's Blended Learning Clubs, providing experiences and activities that will apply math and science concepts as well as communication and artistic skills supported by and integrated with technology.
According to Google the company not only contributes money and equipment, but more than 3,300 of its Bay Area employees helped 86 organizations including the more than 350 employees who've volunteered at Monta Loma and Theuerkauf elementary schools.