Flowery Elementary School students travel to the galaxy with new virtual reality headsets

That is a part of a sequence taking a look at how grants from the Sonoma Valley Schooling Basis assist college students thrive.

Flowery Elementary college students immediately discover themselves touring Athens, driving a gondola in Venice, and zipping by Zion Nationwide Park in Utah.

They’re utilizing the varsity’s new digital actuality headset, thanks primarily to a $1,000 grant that Sarah Hubbard Lake, the varsity’s library media specialist, acquired for 2022-23 by the Sonoma Valley Schooling Basis’s donor choice program.

“Our college students are good and curious,” wrote Hubbard Lake when making use of for the scholarship. They’re mathematicians, scientists, artists and little writers. Lots of our college students stay their lives inside a number of blocks’ radius. They could go to household in one other city or make a journey to city, however they do not have many alternatives to discover outdoors the town limits of our personal little city.

She added, “Digital actuality has some wonderful instructional platforms that permit college students to make a journey all over the world, into house, and even return in time.”

The headphones are presently accessible to fourth and fifth graders, however mother and father of youthful college students who need an opportunity to make use of a headset can attain out to Hubbard-Lake.

Fifth-grade pupil Tallulah Carroll says she was the primary pupil to make use of one of many headphones.

“I used to be actually excited to do this; I’ve at all times needed to do digital actuality,” she stated. “I did the training steps of volleyball—I like hitting issues within the air. I additionally danced with a robotic! “

Luke Smith-Luciano, a fourth grader, enjoys the assorted video games he performs.

“I really like Titans in Area,” he stated. “You might be in an area shuttle and you are attempting to regulate it. There’s additionally an underwater sport the place you get to know various kinds of underwater creatures. In an area sport, you discover ways to management an area shuttle and find out about house. The video games are enjoyable, they usually enable you to study.”

In the meantime, the Flowery college students take pleasure in one other of Hubbard-Lake’s latest Classroom Grant initiatives within the college library.

Libraries aren’t often known as the liveliest locations on the earth, however Flowery college students typically rush to the door of the varsity library throughout recess, wanting to see what is going on on inside.

It is because in the course of the break, the library is reworked into the No-Shhh Unimaginable Library, which presents a variety of video games and different actions that encourage dialog.

“By offering mindfulness instruments for morning meditation, sensory video games for a quiet nook, large video games to play at recess, units for steady chess video games, stationary hawkers for the trip and studying station, and provides for the humanities and crafts nook, this bookstore will turn out to be a artistic studying heart the place college students can have interaction their minds.” and their our bodies,” Hubbard Lake wrote when making use of for the scholarship.

She cherishes the quiet, peaceable haven that conventional libraries present, and appreciates that they supply a great place for college students to study and immerse themselves in guide. Hubbard Lake notes that many faculties are transferring away from the concept that libraries must be silent, static locations for studying.

“College libraries are evolving into bustling, vibrant data facilities that have interaction the entire baby,” she wrote. “This library will proceed to offer a quiet haven for our voracious readers, however it’s my hope that it’s going to evolve into a spot that may affect a pupil’s day in a optimistic and significant manner each inside and outdoors the library.

Research present that mindfulness can scale back anxiousness and motion can immediate youngsters to turn out to be extra alert. When their our bodies are calm and their minds centered, college students merely study higher.”

The No-Shhh Unimaginable Library, accessible to all Flowery college students, was made attainable partly by the $1,000 semester grant Hubbard-Lake acquired in the course of the 2021-22 college yr from the Schooling Basis. Lecturers and faculty employees are allowed to use for one grant of as much as $1,000 per yr.

“With the provides offered by this grant, the library will likely be a supportive place that engages the entire baby by video games, brainteasers and sensory video games, arts and crafts provides, and extra,” stated Jill Chadwin, the inspiration’s director of improvement.

College students can solely go to the wonderful No-Shhh Library throughout recess, whereas the calming library nook is on the market all through the varsity day for any pupil who wants an area for a break outdoors of sophistication.

Hubbard-Lake says college students love the library’s many choices, which embrace not solely a quiet studying space, but additionally a listening lounge, signal language membership, adventures in Bookland, Recreation Time, and a yoga house.

Emery Gybsers, a fifth grader, likes to play video games throughout recess.

“I really like the sport you play to get good… chess, checkers, these sorts of video games,” stated Emery. “I like them as a result of I like to consider my strikes and what I will play. I really feel like I can not actually play outdoors as a result of it is actually noisy.

Luke enjoys coming to the library on recess to make use of a VR headset and play Jenga in a quiet atmosphere.

“It is quieter there,” he stated. “You do not have folks shouting.”

Chadwin praises Hubbard-Lake’s creativity and resourcefulness.

“I’ve observed that she’s one in every of solely a handful of educators who at all times has a mission posted on Donors Select, which collectively brings quite a lot of sources to the Flowery Library. I actually admire the way in which she thinks outdoors the field to carry participating alternatives to her college students.”

To study extra in regards to the Donor Selection Program, the place donors can help a semester software that speaks to them, go to svgreatschools.org.

Contact reporter Dan Johnson at daniel.johnson@sonomanews.com.

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