Leap into Learning!

BY Nicolette Bartolini

Eastham Elementary School

The goal of this project is to provide an engaging technological literacy tool for use with grades K-2.  I currently own 16 LeapFrog Tag pens, which are an electronic “pen” that reads books aloud to the student.  The books are leveled according to specific phonics skills and include games to apply the skills.

When I purchased the pens, I didn’t realize how quickly they use batteries, so for lack of funds, they have gone unused for three years.

I am requesting funds to purchase rechargeable batteries, chargers and headphones, so that we can begin using this great resource in the classroom.  I am also requesting some funds to purchase a few new books that are more at the second grade level, and to replace some books that are damaged.

These can be used by teachers in kindergarten, first or second grade.  They could also be used by Special Education teachers, Title I, or other intervention specialists.  They can be used as a small group center while the teacher works with other children.  The teacher can select a book that is appropriate for the individual child’s needs.

These funds would mean that up to three classrooms could use the Tag system at the same time as a small group center.  Teachers could have their own battery charger in their room with spare batteries ready to go if one of the pens dies out.

This could be a really fun way to get kids excited about reading!

How will the project be evaluated (e.g. how will you gauge its success)

I will create two surveys:  One for students and one for teachers.  We can use the results of the survey to see how much students are enjoying the use of the Tag reading system, and whether teachers feel it is a useful asset to the classroom.

Benefit to the students and the school

This could potentially benefit an unlimited number of students, as the Tag system can be reused year after year.  With rechargeable batteries, there is little need to purchase more items to keep the program in use.

The LeapFrog Tag system books are aligned with core phonics skills that all primary teachers cover with their children and this is a great way to engage those reluctant readers, or to reinforce skills for those who are struggling.

Budget (Please detail how funding will be used. Itemize as appropriate.)

Total funds requested: $250

3 Sets of LeapFrog Leap Reader, Volume 4 @ $12.79 ea  = $38.37

4 12-packs Eneloop rechargeable AAA batteries @ $26.84 ea = 107.36

3 8-bay chargers for rechargeable batteries @ $9.99 ea = 29.97

2 10-packs classroom budget headphones @ $33.99 ea = $67.98

Total (with tax and shipping)  $248.28



(Prices from Amazon.com)

Timeline of Project (when will you do the project, if applicable.)

Once I receive the materials, I can begin implementing this program right away!  I will email colleagues to let them know the materials are available.  They could use them during Teamworks time (small group instruction), intervention time, or during center time in the classroom.  The great thing about it is I think it will be most useful to different teachers at different times of the year, so many teachers will be able to utilize it.  For example, 2nd grade can probably use it right away, as these books address skills we are working on now.  First grade will probably be ready for the books by mid-year, and Kindergarten can use them towards the end of the school year once the kids start reading.  Of course, with this grant, there will be enough available that teachers can use a few any time if they have a child they would like to challenge and/or offer re-teaching to.