Mountain America awards Phoenix Day School for the Deaf scholarship to transform student learning experiences

For the fifth consecutive year, Mountain America Credit Union awarded $ 15,000 in scholarships to improve classroom learning for K-12 students in Arizona, Idaho and Utah.

“It will help create lasting memories and ultimately dramatically improve the classroom experience for my students. I am more than grateful for this opportunity, ”said Kylee craven, kindergarten teacher at Phoenix Day School for the Deaf in Arizona.

Craven was one of nine teachers who received up to $ 1,500 in scholarships from Mountain America Credit Union to help fund their classroom needs for the 2021-2022 school year.

“As teachers we care so much about creating an engaging learning environment and having extra funds to do that, it helps us tremendously,” Craven said.

Craven explained that the grant will help it continue to provide a quality education program to its students aged 5 to 6 who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Video: 2021 Mountain America Credit Union Education Grants

“Deaf students are by nature visual and kinesthetic learners,” she said. “Every student who walks through my door and experiences a transformation of the room will learn through experiences that they will remember forever. ”

This semester, kindergarten children will be transported to a farm-themed classroom. “With the grant, we have purchased manipulatives, decorations, course materials and more that will help us transform the classroom into a different interactive and experiential learning periodically throughout the year. In the past we’ve created room transformations like Glow Day, Construction Day and now Farm Day, ”she described.

The installation also includes barn doors made with bulletin board paper and paint. Hay bales and inflatable animals also help set the scene and allow students to be taken to a farm to learn about the animals and their habitats. The themes will alternate throughout the year to increase the academic experience of the students.

In addition to many transformations in the classroom, she explained that the funds will also be used for other types of hands-on educational activities.

Phoenix day school for deaf teacher Kylee Craven and her students learn about Farm Day in her classroom. Photo courtesy of Mountain America Credit Union

Shortly after learning that the school had been selected as Mountain America Credit Union Scholarship Recipient, Faculty members said they were surprised and grateful.

“When Kylee shared the news with me, we were both shocked and excited, thinking of the incredible possibilities and play transformations that await our little learners. It will have an incredible impact on their learning, ”said Amber Akapnitis, School’s director.

She also encouraged other teachers to apply to help fund innovative ways to educate their unique learners. Deaf students need multisensory and hands-on experiences to make connections for lasting learning.

“As educators you always do your best to make the most of the limited resources you have,” she said. “The Mountain America Scholarships make it easier for teachers to create the most effective learning experiences for students, and I think all educators should consider applying. ”

“Each year we see how these scholarships are awarded to teachers who find innovative ways to help their students achieve their academic and financial dreams,” said Spencer carver, assistant vice-president of certain employer groups at Mountain America Credit Union , who helped organize the EScholarship program.

Mountain America Awards Phoenix Day School for the Deaf Scholarship to Transform Student Learning Experiences Mountain-America-Credit-Union-Kylee-Craven-and-student-in-classroom-1024x684
Phoenix Day School for the Deaf teacher Kylee Craven works with a student on a Farm Day themed classroom learning activity. Photo courtesy of Mountain America Credit Union

Since Mountain America began its Scholarship program in 2016, the credit union awarded grants totaling more than $ 75,000 to 50 teachers and principals in Arizona, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah.

Other grant recipients use the funds for a wide variety of purposes, including earth and science labs, mathematical manipulatives and new books, as well as updating school libraries to promote financial literacy. and reading.

This year’s scholarship recipients include Kylee craven, a teacher at Phoenix Day School for the Deaf in Arizona; Erica Nielsen, a teacher at Koelsch Primary School in Boise, Idaho; and educators in Utah, including Andrew Groth, American Fork Junior High; Danyel anderson, Roosevelt Elementary School; Carol fackler, Crestview Elementary; Camille Farias, Dixon College; Isabelle Hollandsworth, Elk Meadows Elementary School; Kelleen leslie, Blackridge Elemental; Jessica payne, Windridge Elemental; and Nani (Diana Leilani) Pierson, Windridge Elementary School.

Mountain America scholarship opportunities for the academic year 2022 will be announced on To be eligible, applicants must be members of the credit union.

Mountain America Awards Phoenix Day School for the Deaf Scholarship to Transform Student Learning Experiences Mountain-America-Education-Grants-2021
Mountain America Scholarship Winners for 2021. Photo courtesy of Mountain America Credit Union

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