COPPERAS COVE, TX — Mae Stevens Early Learning Academy received three grants from the Copperas Cove Education Foundation to increase student learning, health, nutrition, and technology access.
One of the grants funds a physical education program called Born to Move, which focuses on the development of various motor skills while providing children with disabilities the ability to participate with their peers through inclusive practices.
"We are learning how to exercise our brains and bodies through movement, play and nutrition," physical education teacher Patricia Crawford said. "The kids really look forward to coming to P.E. because they never know what fun game they are going to play or cooking lesson they will be learning."
For some students, school is the only place where students participate in organized sports and play.
"The kids loved Stick It. They got the concept of the game quickly," paraprofessional Vanessa Sims said. "Their goal was to get nine balls on the back of the other team's vests. The kids were yelling 'get that ball' and were so excited to count the balls to see who won. So, there is a built-in math component also."
Crawford turned eating nutritious food into a game for students by asking them to create a silly face on their plates using various fruits and veggies, food that was purchased with grant money.
Students are also able to learn how to identify food items and colors, how it grows and define the number of each item on their plate.
"I loved the vegetables and fruit like the blueberries and cherry tomatoes, but I didn't like the chives. They were spicy," 4-year-old Leia Loeffelholz said. "My silly face had lots of hair that was going up."
The Copperas Cove Education Foundation provided more than $11,000 in the form of 10 grants to CCISD teachers using innovative instructional methods.