Non-profit programs with a focus on science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM), as well as the environment, were recipients of a number of grants totaling $700,000 from the American Honda Foundation, the charitable arm of American Honda Motor Co. The 12 recipients from the spring and summer grant cycle come from six states.
“A key focus of the American Honda Foundation is to support the success of young people and inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers,” said Alexandra Warnier, executive director of the American Honda Foundation. “We commend the Foundation’s grant recipients on their incredible efforts to provide students with experiential STEAM learning opportunities.”
The Two-Bit Circus Foundation received a grant to enhance teaching surrounding critical thinking.Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc
Grant recipients for the first half of the Foundation’s fiscal year include:
- CEC Stuyvesant Cove, Inc. (dba Solar One): Through the organization’s Green Design Lab program and curriculum, students, teachers and custodial staff in the New York City school system learn about environmental STEM subjects and work together to design and implement feasible, creative ways to reduce their school and community’s environmental footprint. This is part of the City’s overall plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
- Center for Creative Education: The Center for Creative Education’s teaching artists collaborate with kindergarten through third grade classroom teachers in Palm Beach County, Fla., to deliver curriculum that integrates the arts such as painting, dancing, music and drama into content areas such as science, language arts, and math. This teaching approach boosts student engagement and long-term memory gains, with students achieving at higher rates than non-participating peers attending the same public schools.
- Elementary Institute of Science: The organization’s STEP-2-STEM program provides access to high-quality STEM learning activities for students attending 11 Title I elementary schools in the San Diego, Calif. area. The program promotes early exposure to subjects such as biology, computer science, chemistry and engineering to help build strong foundations for STEM learning in later grades.
- Imagine Science: In an effort to narrow the opportunity gap for underserved youth, Imagine Science is a collaboration between four major youth service organizations: Boys & Girls Clubs, Girls Inc., National 4-H Council, and Y-USA. Youth in participating Imagine Science communities benefit from hands-on STEM activities integrated into an array of one-time or multi-week youth development programs in hopes of inspiring the next generation of scientific thinkers and problem solvers.
- Jones Valley Teaching Farm: Using food, farming and the culinary arts, instructors deliver experiential lessons that align with academic standards in math, science, social studies and English language arts. Teaching Farms on school campuses in Birmingham, Ala., provide an environment where Pre-K through 12th grade students can learn, create, and grow a healthy future for themselves and their community.
- Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired: Teens and younger kids who are blind or have low vision are mentored by blind STEM professionals and gain new exposure to the sciences through year-round science enrichment activities. During the summer STEM camp at Enchanted Hills Camp for the Blind in Napa, Calif., participants focus on general science exploration, computer coding and environmental science. These programs help blind students gain interest, experience and confidence that increase academic and career success.
- Reality Changers: With a focus on building academic performance, leadership and soft skills, Reality Changers recruits 8th through 11th grade students from underrepresented backgrounds and sets them on a path to become first-generation college graduates and agents of change in their communities. Students who achieve at least a 3.5 GPA are eligible for Academic Connections, a three-week summer residential program at University of California, San Diego (UCSD), where they attend STEM classes taught by UCSD faculty and earn college credits.
- Rocking the Boat, Inc.: Students from the South Bronx, N.Y., work together to build wooden boats, learn to row and sail, and restore local urban waterways, revitalizing their community while creating better lives for themselves. The program helps students develop self-confidence, set goals and gain the skills necessary to achieve them.
- SIFMA (Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association) Foundation for Investor Education: Through its flagship financial literacy program, The Stock Market Game, SIFMA is working to address declining math test scores and encourage financial education across the state of Massachusetts. Students in fourth through 12th grades receive hypothetical funds to purchase stocks, bonds and mutual funds, while studying current events to assess the impact on the market and their own portfolios.
- Two-Bit Circus Foundation: Providing support to teachers in the Lynwood Unified School District in California, the Foundation offers virtual STEM and STEAM trainings, kits and other resources to engage students through remote learning. Each project is standards-aligned and designed to teach, inspire and call on students’ creativity and critical thinking skills.
- Urban Teachers: Operating in Baltimore, Washington, D.C. and Dallas, Urban Teachers is a national teacher development program that recruits and prepares effective educators for children in urban schools. This four-year program equips novice educators with the tools and knowledge to empower children through learning and to stay in the teaching profession. A key priority for the organization is preparing Black and Latinx educators who draw on their own backgrounds and experiences to accelerate academic and life outcomes of urban children.
- Women’s Audio Mission: With a mission to change the face of sound by addressing the underrepresentation of women in creative technology careers, Women’s Audio Mission’s Girls on the Mic program uses music and media to inspire and engage more than 2,500 underserved girls ages 11 to 18 from Title I schools in the San Francisco Bay Area. Afterschool sessions are held five days a week to introduce girls to careers in sound engineering. Students learn critical thinking and problem-solving skills by completing STEM projects like developing and recording podcasts, building small synthesizers and creating interactive music using coding apps.
Since its establishment in 1984, the American Honda Foundation has awarded more than $43 million to organizations serving over 118 million people across the U.S. To learn more about the Foundation’s grant application process, visit www.honda.com/community/applying-for-a-grant.