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Congratulations to the 2019-2020 PAMKA Faculty Trust Grant Recipients!

The PAMKA Faculty Trust Grant Committee is pleased to announce seven Faculty Trust Grants for the 2019-2020 school year. The grant recipients will embark on adventures to pursue experiences that will enlighten them and enrich their students’ classroom experiences in unique ways.

PAMKA is proud to award these grants and this year’s recipients will join the list of over 155 faculty members who have received Faculty Trust Grants since the inception of this program in 1978. 

Primary School Teacher Breanna Conley will travel to Ghana to tour the capital Accra, the Cape Coast, as well as Kumasi, the home of the Ashanti kingdom and the birthplace of Kente cloth and Adinkra stamps. Breanna describes this as a journey of self-discovery, and since learning that her ancestry is from Ghana and western Africa she is inspired to travel there and experience first-hand the culture of her people and ancestry. This experience will enrich Breanna personally as well as enrich her classroom teaching by giving an authentic perspective that can be added to an African unit of study in Pre-K.





Primary School French Teacher Anne-Sophie Roure will visit Guadeloupe where she will discover and experience the traditions, culture, food, natural wonders, and language of the country by traveling to all six inhabited islands of Guadeloupe. She will interact with a variety of people to understand what it feels like to be a citizen of France while being geographically remote from France and having distinct traditions, culture, food and language. She is also excited by the perspective of discovering the natural wonders the incredibly diverse Guadeloupe has to offer. Anne-Sophie’s experiences will allow her to shine a light on the Francophone world beyond Europe for her French language students at the Primary School.





Primary School Teacher Sheila Smith will embark on an adventure to Lisbon and the Algarve Region of Portugal to study various art forms, particularly tile art, visit an eclectic array of museums, participate in a mindfulness workshop, and engage in a meaningful global experience. Sheila looks forward to sharing her art expression and mindfulness experiences with the vibrant 2S community. She plans to implement daily mindfulness practices and create hands on art opportunities to encourage students to slow down and be more present in the moment and support holistically taking care of our Primary School students.





Middle School English Teacher Ruth Miller is heading to England to attend the Teacher Seminar at Oxford University as a student of the study group, Shakespeare in History, which focuses on both historical and current contexts of Shakespeare’s work. The seminar is a one-week experience led by distinguished scholars who are working and writing in the field. Ruth is inspired by the prospect of a week’s intense study with other Shakespeare scholars and discussing the work and how the plays are experienced in the world, then and now. Attending the Teacher Seminar for Shakespeare in History will directly enrich her teaching of the 7th grade Shakespeare unit which is one-third of the curricular year for 7th graders. Ruth plans to share teaching ideas and gain new ones from fellow participants.





Middle School Math and Health & Wellness Teacher Kristen Sigler will embark on an adventure to Peru to participate in a nine-day trek from Cusco to Machu Picchu and learn about the life of the Incas. She plans to trek the famed Incan Salkantay Pass route as well as visit Machu Picchu and gain insight into Inca history and culture and nature of Peru. Kristen plans to enrich classroom learning through this trip by taking the engineering and architectural concepts used in building Machu Picchu and applying them to the 5th grade math curriculum which incorporates elements of architecture. She also plans to create journal entries, photographs, and videos that will supplement her instruction.





Upper School French Teacher Michael Houston will travel to France to gain insight into the places and events that helped shape Napoleon Bonaparte's life and legacy. Michael’s trip includes visits to sites from pivotal points in Napoleon’s life. His ultimate goal of this trip is to gain insight into the places and events that helped shape Napoleon's legacy, to help explain why he is both revered and reviled by the French people. In his French classes, Michael plans to examine Napoleon Bonaparte and other historical figures as flawed human beings with both good and bad qualities. He also plans to share his research on the topic of what constitutes a hero with his colleagues, which will be useful in considering the character of any historical figure.





Upper School Chemistry and Physics Teacher Rebecca Thompson will embark on an adventure to Wyoming to visit Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks to witness the geochemistry of the geothermal features, and to spend time engaging with the natural environment by backpacking and kayaking. The geochemistry of the Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks show many chemistry concepts in action that are covered in her Chemistry 1 Honors curriculum. In addition to teaching chemistry, Becky has chaperoned two Global Experience trips and hopes the backpacking and kayaking components from her trip to Yellowstone and Grand Teton will provide her with practical experience that she can apply on future outdoor-based trips with MKA.