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Paperless Classrooms for Middle School Students at Sheldon School

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America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education grants support math and science education

SHELDON, Mo. (Nov. 11, 2014) – The Sheldon R-VIII School District has received a $10,000 grant from America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education, sponsored by the Monsanto Fund. The district used the grant to achieve a paperless math classroom by adding laptops, an interactive projector and other technology that engages students in learning through various web-based applications and programs.

“Our middle school students will have the opportunity to use technology every day in their math classes. They will learn math through new and innovative ways, moving away from just working out problems on paper,” said grant writer Carolyn Compton. “Our students will see that the internet, computers, and software programs are valuable resources that can be used for learning math.”

Compton is also the Assistant Principal at Sheldon School, and worked with math teacher Amie Breckenridge to find the best way to get technology into the hands of their students.

“Mrs. Breckenridge and I sat down to begin brainstorming and the project began to take shape in our minds,” said Compton. “We then began putting it on paper, worked through the details and logistics, and came up with the idea of the paperless math classroom.”

“Through the generosity of our local farmers and the Monsanto Fund, we are able to put a program in place that would not otherwise be possible,” added Compton. “We would like to thank the farmers in our area for their support and for giving us the opportunity to apply for this grant that is allowing us to provide technology for our students.”

This past spring, local farmers nominated the district for a chance to apply for the grant. School administrators then designed a math or science-based project for the grant application. Once all of the school district applications were submitted, a panel of math and science teachers reviewed each application and selected finalists.  An advisory council, composed of farmer-leaders with an interest in agriculture and education, then selected the winning grant applications from a pool of finalists.

“Agriculture has become one of the most technologically advanced industries, so farmers are very aware of the need for superior math and science education, particularly in their own communities,” said Monsanto Customer Advocacy Lead Linda Arnold. “We are proud to partner with farmers to support the things that are most important to them—schools, youth, and their community.”

The district celebrated receiving the grant on Monday, Nov. 10, during the annual Harvest Dinner at the High School. Nominating farmers, school representatives and local Monsanto representative Jon White attended the event.

Grow Rural Education encourages farmers to nominate a local public school district, which can then compete for a grant of up to $25,000. Since 2011, Grow Rural Education has invested more than $7 million to support math and science education in rural school districts across the country.

This program is part of the America’s Farmers initiative, which partners with farmers to support education, service organizations and youth in rural America. Visit GrowRuralEducation.com to see the full list of winners for this year. A sister program, America’s Farmers Grow Communities is currently in its enrollment period. To sign up, visit GrowCommunities.com.

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About America’s Farmers

The America’s Farmers campaign highlights the importance of modern US Agriculture through communications and community outreach programs that partner with farmers to impact rural America. To learn more, visit America’s Farmers at www.AmericasFarmers.com.

About the Monsanto Fund

The Monsanto Fund, the philanthropic arm of the Monsanto Company, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening the communities where farmers and Monsanto Company employees live and work. Visit the Monsanto Fund at www.monsantofund.org