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Five Educators in Watauga and Three in Avery Awarded BREMCO Bright Ideas Grants at Event Nov. 14

by Madison V. Fisler

Nov. 15, 2013. On Thursday, Nov. 14, The Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation held a dinner at the Dan’l Boone Inn in Boone in honor of Watauga and Avery County educators who have won a Bright Ideas grant from Blue Ridge Electric. 

The corporation presented checks to teachers who presented innovative teaching ideas through the Bright Ideas grant program. The program awarded grants to teachers in Alleghany County, Watauga County, Avery County, Caldwell County and Ashe County. At this particular event, grants were awarded to the winning educators in Watauga and Avery County. 

In Watauga County, five education professionals received Bright Ideas grants to fund their projects. 

Anne Sukow of Bethel Elementary, along with team member Beaver Robinette received a grant of $750 for their “Fiddling to Improve Math and Reading Skills” program. This proposed project will use music to help students participate in strings class when their financial situation otherwise would not allow it. 

Chris Watson of Green Valley Elementary School received a grant totaling $1,352 to support “Music Class for the 21 Century” program which will help 391 students in music and chorus classes learn about 21st Century music using speakers and iPads. 

Susan Miller of Parkway Elementary was awarded $1,266 for her program “Primary Source Readers and Fiction Readers for World History.” This program is proposed to help more than 60 students in social studies by using nonfiction readers to understand key places in the ancient world. 

Burl Green, along with Mitzi London and Darcy Grimes of Bethel Elementary were awarded $998 for their program “Technological Fitness,” which will held 115 students use fitness programs to help students with workouts and tracking physical achievements. 

Kimberly McAulay of Cove Creek Elementary was awarded $729 for her “Robotics Club” program which will held 20 students have an exciting after-school opportunity to explore scientific and technological concepts with robotics. 

In Avery County, three educational professional received Bright Ideas grants to help fund their projects. 

Laura King of Cranberry Middle School was awarded $475 to help more than 60 students with her program “Math Moves Me.” This program will allow students to interact with their bodies to act out math concepts. 

Robert E. Tufts of Cranberry Middle School was awarded $540 to help 62 students in eighth grade science with his program “Testing Water Toxicity.” This program will allow students to determine environmental impact of common pollutants and help them better understand science concepts. 

Mitzie Huffman of Newland Elementary School was awarded $910 to help 40 students in science with her program “A Little Science Please.” This program will allow students to get engaged in science with experiment equipment for hands-on activities. 

From a press release: 

Bright Ideas is an academic grants program sponsored by Blue Ridge Electric in conjunction with North Carolina Electric Membership Corporation and its 26 other member electric  cooperatives. Bright Ideas Grants help further traditional academic learning by funding innovative scholastic projects that go beyond available school funding. 

Blue Ridge Electric received 59 grant applications for the year from schools in Caldwell, Watauga, Ashe, Alleghany, Wilkes and Avery Counties. This year, a grand total of $20,696 was awarded to 23 different schools in the service area.

This year is the 20th year of Blue Ridge Electric offering Bright Ideas grants as part of its commitment to education. To date, more than $363,000 has been awarded with an impact on more than 100,000 students in the area. 

In Watauga County, five education professionals received Bright Ideas grants to fund their projects. 

Check out the photos of the event.

All photos by Rebecca Mullins