The Needham Education Foundation has awarded 20 grants totaling nearly $45,000 in its autumn small grants cycle. Needham students will learn from visiting authors and dancers in residence, historical reenactments, a program pairing high school students with senior citizens, and even a course in cryogenics. These are among the programs that will receive support, reaching across all Needham public schools and all grade levels.

The Needham Education Foundation funds programs that fall outside normal school funding and promote innovation and excellence for students. Autumn grants, announced at the Needham School Committee meeting on Nov. 20, include funding for:

  • A Jazz quartet to introduce students at all five elementary schools to various styles of jazz and complement the music curriculum.
  • The Boston Museum of Science’s “Cryogenics:  Heat and Temperature” live demonstration for 8th graders at Pollard Middle School, including experiments that cannot easily be conducted in a typical classroom.
  • Seed money for a new “Farm to School” at Needham High School that was organized in response to student interest in local and organic farming, composting, and sustainable food practices.
  • Android tablets for a high school computer programming class to enable students to design and test apps.