Education Notes

Education Notes

December 28, 2003

Rotary club project gives dictionaries to third-graders

Members of the Parole Rotary Club delivered 700 dictionaries to third-graders in local elementary schools. The group's Dictionary Project provides each pupil with a dictionary to take home and use through the 12th grade.

Elementary schools receiving the dictionaries include Annapolis, Cape St. Claire, Eastport, Germantown, Hillsmere, Mills-Parole, Rolling Knolls, Tyler Heights, West Annapolis, Windsor Farm and Georgetown East. Members of the Parole Rotary visited the schools and presented the books to the pupils and teachers in their classrooms.

In addition to helping pupils learn spelling, pronunciation, definitions and word use, the books could help develop reading, writing and creative abilities.

Teaching scholarship applications due Wednesday

The deadline to apply for the Sharon Christa McAuliffe Memorial Teacher Education Award for the 2004-2005 academic year is Wednesday.

Scholarships are awarded to Maryland residents who have at least 60 college credits, college graduates and teachers in a noncritical shortage area. The goal of the program is to encourage students to teach in areas such as chemistry, computer science, earth and space science, English for Speakers of Other Languages, mathematics, physical science, physics, Spanish, special education, special education for the severely and profoundly disabled and visually impaired and technical education.

To be eligible, a student must enroll full- or part-time at a four-year college or university in an undergraduate program that offers a major in the shortage area. Recipients of the scholarship must maintain a minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. The maximum scholarship is $14,775.

Those who receive the scholarship must agree to work as a teacher in the shortage area one year for each year the award was received.

The award was named for McAuliffe, the first teacher picked to fly in space. She was a native of Boston and she earned a master's degree from Bowie State University. McAuliffe died in 1986 when the space shuttle Challenger exploded, killing all seven astronauts on board. Information: 410-260-4565.

County public school pupils get in free to First Night

A partnership between M&T Bank and First Night Annapolis enabled children in kindergarten through fifth grade in Anne Arundel County public schools to receive a free admission button to First Night Annapolis' New Year's Eve celebration Wednesday. Buttons were distributed at the schools before the start of winter break.

First Night Annapolis starts at 4 p.m. at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts with First Act, sponsored by Arundel Mills and featuring activities and performances for children. First Act ends at 7 p.m. with a "Kids Countdown" complete with a Bubble Wrap Stomp. First Night attendees can stay at Maryland Hall for performances until 11 p.m., or they can take the free shuttle downtown for more activities.

First Night Annapolis Inc. is a nonprofit arts organization that celebrates community by connecting people through the arts year-round. Information: 410-268-8553 or www.firstnight annapolis.org.

Host families needed for exchange students

Foreign high school students are scheduled to arrive soon for the academic semester, and the sponsoring organization needs a few more local host families.

According to Pacific Intercultural Exchange Executive Director John Doty, the students are between the ages of 15 and 18, speak English, have spending money, carry accident and health insurance, and are eager to share their cultural experiences with their American families. PIE has programs to match most families' needs, ranging in length from a semester to an academic year, where the students attend local high schools.

Prospective host families can review student applications, and PIE can work with various family situations such as single-parent households, childless couples, retired couples or large families.

Host families are eligible to claim a $50 per month charitable contribution deduction on their itemized tax returns each month they are host to a sponsored student.

PIE is a nonprofit educational organization that has sponsored more than 20,000 students from 40 countries since its founding in 1975.

The agency also has travel/study program opportunities abroad for American high school students as well as possibilities for community volunteers to assist and work with host families, students and schools. Information: 1-800- 631-1818.

AACC offers spring courses at north county locations

Anne Arundel Community College offers 47 spring credit classes at the Arundel Center North and 22 classes at the Hospitality, Culinary Arts and Tourism Institute, both at Glen Burnie Town Center; plus 10 classes at Glen Burnie High School.

Eight- and 15-week courses begin Jan. 21. Some hospitality courses can be completed more quickly and have varying start and finish dates.

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