June 20, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

WNDB Walter Grants Return | News Bites

We cover grant opportunities for fledgling writers and educators, mentorships for SCBWI illustrators, and a new ISTE certification in this edition of News Bites. 

WNDB Taking Walter Grant Submissions

After a year on hiatus, We Need Diverse Books is once again offering Walter Grants and the submission deadline is approaching. The grants, named after author Walter Dean Myers, were established “to amplify and elevate diverse writers as well as their diverse works.”

Applicants must identify as diverse (defined by WNDB as a person of color, Native American, LGBTQIA+, person with a disability, or marginalized religious or cultural minority), be unpublished, a U.S. resident age 18 or older, and working toward a career as a children’s author or illustrator.

WNDB will award five grants of $2,000 each this year. The deadline for submission is June 15.

The first Walter Grants were awarded in 2015, including one that went to Angie Thomas, who used the money to buy a computer and complete her manuscript, The Hate U Give.


Social Media Mentorships for Illustrators

Debbie Ridpath Ohi Photo by Annie T.

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) is offering two social media mentorship awards for illustrators attending its Annual Summer Conference in Los Angeles in August. The goal of the mentorships is to “identify and help emerging illustrators or illustrator/authors who have a contracted picture book being published in the year following the conference (or later) to develop social media strategies to promote their books and offer guidance in tailoring their overall online personal brand.”

Illustrators must be working on a children’s book that is contracted and scheduled to be published by a PAL publisher in 2019 or later. The winners will be chosen by author and illustrator Debbie Ridpath Ohi (I’m Sad, Sam & Eva) and SCBWI board of advisors illustrator committee member Laurent Linn. Applications are due by July 1.


New ISTE Certification

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) has established the ISTE Certification for Educators, a competency-based, vendor- and device-neutral teacher certification based on ISTE’s standards for educators. It recognizes “educators who understand how to use edtech for learning in meaningful and transformative ways.”

To receive the certification, teachers will participate in professional learning. After completing the training, participants will have six months to apply their training and submit a “competency-based portfolio” to earn certification.

NEA Student Achievement grants

The The NEA Foundation Student Achievement grants application deadline is approaching. Grants of $2,000 and $5,000 are available to fund a project for 12 months from the date of the award. Applications are due June 1 with applicants notified of selections by September 15. (There are three deadlines for these grants. If educators miss the June 1 deadline, the third and final one for 2018 is October 15.) Funds earned can be used for resource materials, supplies, transportation, technology, or scholars-in-residence.

Grants are available to current NEA Foundation members from public schools or public institutions of higher education. Education support professionals are encouraged to apply to apply, and preference is being given to proposals that “incorporate STEM and/or global learning into projects.”

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