With our strong commitment to enabling and celebrating students engaging in science projects, Synopsys Outreach Foundation pivoted some of its funding toward COVID-19 responses that directly benefit students in Silicon Valley most at-risk of learning loss due from school closures during Summer 2020.

RAFT (Resource Area for Teaching) received a $60,000 grant from Synopsys Outreach Foundation in June 2020. This facilitated the distribution of 33,000 hands-on STEAM kits directly to K-8 students—many of whom do not have internet access—at Title 1 schools’ free meal distribution sites throughout Santa Clara County. Each kit contained all materials necessary to conduct a science project and instructions in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese.
With a Synopsys Outreach Foundation grant of $40,000, SVEF (Silicon Valley Education Foundation) printed and distributed 7,000 at-home math and science activity packets for Santa Clara County Pre-K to Grade 10 students to be collected at school free meal pick-up sites in July 2020. The packets, available in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese, feature integrated activities in math and science, as well as college readiness and mental health resources.
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Both the RAFT kits and the SVEF packets contain grade-level appropriate mathematics activities and engaging science experiments interwoven with language arts skills. The kits and packets are designed to counteract learning loss due to school closures during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially for students who lack access to the internet or an electronic device.

“With school closures in effect throughout the summer, the need for access to educational resources remains a top priority for our most vulnerable students,” says Denise Williams, Chief Program Officer of Silicon Valley Education Foundation. “These activity packets aim to fill that need by providing quality educational material directly into the hands of our community.”
Students who complete the kits and packets will be eligible to receive Target gift cards from Synopsys Outreach Foundation for prioritizing learning over the summer.

Robyn Stone

Robyn Stone

STEM Education Program Manger

Robyn Stone is Manager of STEM Education Programs for Synopsys Outreach Foundation. A former elementary school classroom teacher and science specialist for 13 years, Robyn has also served as an instructional coach for San Mateo Environmental Learning Collaborative. She is a member of the Environmental Literacy Committee of the California Science Teachers Association and a member of National Science Teachers Association. An adjunct faculty instructor for UCSC Silicon Valley Extension, Robyn teaches courses and workshops in STEM curriculum, supervising teachers, and partnering with families. Since earning a Master of Arts in Teaching at University of San Francisco, Robyn has achieved California credentials in Administrative Services, Site Supervision, and Multiple Subject Teaching, as well as National Geographic Educator Certification. Many of Robyn’s lesson plans, articles, and reflections have been published in California Mathematics Council’s Connections journal, Green Teacher journal, and on the Ten Strands blog.

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