Glennville Elementary School (GES) teachers Julianne Atkinson and Chaz Kicklighter have been chosen to receive a PAGE (Professional Association of Georgia Educators) Educator Grant.
This grant, not to exceed $500, will be distributed as reimbursement for qualifying documented expenses incurred between January 1 and October 31, 2022.
Atkinson is in her sixth year of teaching. She is the music teacher at GES and plans to use this grant to equip her classroom to meet the needs of her Neurodivergent students.
“Neurodivergent students are students whose brains work differently from neurotypical students,” Atkinson said. “Think ADHD, Sensory Processing Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder, OCD, Anxiety, Dyslexia, etc. However, many of the items I plan to purchase with this grant money will be useful for all of my students. At the elementary level, all students need a great amount of movement and sensory input.”
Atkinson applied for this grant in January 2022.
“The Tattnall County School System is great at providing what teachers need for our students,” Atkinson said.
“I had this really out-of-the-box idea for connecting music and needs for neurodivergent students. Music naturally lends itself to differentiation. ‘Sing. Say. Dance. Play. Create.’ is my philosophy of music education at the elementary level. I wanted to take it a step further and include tools that would allow students to learn in their best way,” Atkinson said.
Atkinson is a 2007 graduate of Valdosta State University with a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education. She then received her Master of Science degree in Middle Level Education from Walden University in 2011.
Kicklighter plans to get much needed new equipment for his Physical Education class at GES, such as balls, nets, cones, and more. He enjoys his job very much and wants to see the kids succeed in a well-equipped classroom.
“Being able to coach Physical Education is a blessing, but being able to have a positive impact on kids where I grew up is what really makes my job amazing,” Kicklighter said.
He is a 2020 graduate of Georgia Southern University with a Bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. He is a 2012 graduate of Tattnall County High School.
Kicklighter was the head basketball coach for the South Tattnall Middle School (STMS) boys’ team, an assistant coach for STMS football, and is the assistant baseball coach at STMS this year.