March 24, 2021 | The traffic/parking signs are now complete! Yay! Thanks to CSX Transportation for the funds to purchase the signs. Thanks to Roger Mann, retired Public Works Superintendent of Highways with the City of Jacksonville, for an extraordinary amount of VOLUNTEER labor to move, remove, shorten, straighten, transport, and install signs.
Signs had been installed over the school’s 70-year history ad hoc without re-evaluating the total effect. We’ve been working on the signs for two years and everyone – especially Roger! – is glad to have this phase of the School Beautification finished!
I think everyone would agree it is time to replace the tall, ugly, old, blue sign in front of the school. It even has a wrong address! The sign states “Rd.” when the correct address is Civic Club Drive.
January 1, 2021 | Your generous $5,000 grant allows us to continue our multi-phase school beautification program. An earlier grant allowed us to build an outdoor classroom, add plantings and mulch, and trim trees. With this new money we hope to provide fresh new signs, give the exterior viewable from the road a much-needed pressure washing, and provide additional plantings.
With the last grant, our volunteers helped us to get the most bang-for-the-buck. We hope to stretch these dollars as well.
November 10, 2020 | We come to the close of the CSX grant. We are proud of how much we were able to accomplish.
We stretched the grant funds received nearly one year ago with in-kind contributions and volunteer labor. This budget does not include hardly any of the volunteer labor. However, we did report “specialized skilled volunteer labor” as in-kind contributions below.
On behalf of all the students, teachers, staff, and friends of Dinsmore Elementary, thank you again CSX for this school beautification grant!
November 2, 2020 | Students and teachers can now enjoy an outdoor classroom. The benches and customized narrow tables face the teacher in a “fireside setting” atmosphere. This is a first-of-its-kind outdoor classroom design.
Leaving the four walls of the classroom and holding a class outdoors promotes learning. Kids have increased concentration and are more motivated, inspired and willing to learn when lessons are held outdoors.
Moreover, findings from a 2017 study show that learning outdoors is not just a fun, novel experience for kids, but also helps them focus once they return to the classroom. There is a carryover effect as children actually pay better attention in class after an outdoor lesson. Just an hour or two of outdoor learning engages children, improves their well-being, and increases teachers’ job satisfaction.
September 27, 2020 | The cement slab for the outdoor classroom has school district approval. We accepted delivery of six student tables and the teacher bench. As soon as we receive the student benches, our Friends volunteer will install the furniture!
August 14, 2020 | The Outdoor Classroom is happening! The fence is gone, the concrete slab building permit obtained, and the tables and benches are on order. This is an exciting day that our Friends President started thinking would never happen!