Current Grant Recipients

Literacy Legacy Fund of Michigan

Current Grant Recipients

To date, LLF Michigan has distributed over $38,000 in literacy enhancing grants.  In 2017 the first Legacy Grant was presented to the Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum.  None of this activity would or could happen without generous and committed donors, volunteers, and partners over the past years.  We truly value the effort of all who supported enhancing Michigan literacy of all ages!  (more information to come as we rebuild this page)




Jump Start Grant – The 2019 Summer Linguistic Lecture Series

 Dr. Wil Rankinen (of GVSU) Summer Linquistic Lecture Series

Dr. Wil Rankinen, of Grand Valley State University, was awarded a JumpStart grant for 2019 installment of The Summer Linguistic Lecture Series: Words as a Source of Identity in the U.P. English. The 2019 SLLS objective is to bring awareness to local communities regarding the influences of identity on local vocabulary and to support and legitimize local language use in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.  More information will be available upon completion of grant objectives.


Jump Start Grant – Bedford’s Bookapalooza-Getting Kids on Board for Summer Reading!

K. Moccio/Bedford Elementary School, Dearborn Heights School District #7, was awarded a JumpStart grant for Bedford’s Bookapalooza-Getting Kids on Board for Summer Reading! The funds from this grant assisted in enabling Bedford Elementary School/K. Moccio to provide free children’s books to 3-5th graders in low income families, to increase enthusiasm for summer reading, and to improve reading proficiency/decrease reading loss by increasing accessibility to free books. The students helped identify authors, topics, or titles they were interested in for selection.  More information will be available upon completion of the grant objectives, early 2020.


JumpStart Grant – Metadata Literacy for Digitizing Historical Documents

Marquette Regional History Center was awarded a JumpStart grant for their work to preserve priceless local history documents in the John M. Longyear Research Library for future generations. This grant will assist in training NMU students and other interested community members to write metadata and create digital objects from physical documents.  More information will be available upon completion of grant objectives.


JumpStart Grant – BookPALS/Children’s Literacy Network

The Children’s Literacy Network in Ann Arbor was awarded a JumpStart grant for their BookPALS program. This grant will help fund tablets 2nd graders in three low-resource schools and peers from near-by more affluent communities with compatible reading levels and interests will use to record themselves reading and share with their “BookPAL”.  More information will be available upon completion of grant objectives.



CURRENT GRANT RECIPIENTS (2018-2019 implementation)

Lowell Area Historical Museum

 The “Museum Immersion” program for the 2018-2019 school year brought students the direct expertise of local historians and engaged them in learning deeply about the history of their community, how museums work, and how to present history. Students learned historical content through reading exhibit labels, hands on activities utilizing primary sources and working with historians. The program was provided to all third grade classes in the Lowell Area School District, a total of three buildings and 11 classes, 275 students and 11 teachers.


After preparation in their classrooms, on the first day students were given time to explore the museum on their own, recorded in the journals their thoughts, then given another opportunity to go back through the Museum and select one thing that (artifact or person) they were wanted to learn more about. Museum staff assembled “research packets” on everything we could find on the items students wanted to know about. On day two each student received their individual packet and they studied the material and wrote an exhibit label to share with classmates what they learned about their item. Each day students participated in at least three activities that required supplies. At the end of the two days each student was presented with a certificate made possible by this grant.





Marquette Regional History Center Receives Two Grants

The first grant provided waived research fees for NMU students for the 2018-2019 academic year.

The second grant provided funds for training/workshops on how to use & research local history documents in the John M. Longyear Research Library.



2018 Literacy Grant Recipients


NMU Creative Writing Project 2018 JumpStart Grant

“Creative Writing Night at NMU”.  Underwrote creative writing night for high school English teachers and students. The program is to be assisted by Graduate and undergraduate English Education Students, majoring in English curriculum. The grant was awarded in 2017 and the program implemented in spring of 2018.



2018 JumpStart Grant / Peter White Public Library

LLF Michigan awarded a 2018 JumpStart grant to Peter White Public Library, Marquette, MI to assist with purchase of books for the Prime Time Preschool program to take place for the second time in a year – the Prime Time Preschool and Prime Time Family event takes place in the fall – last year was the first series and the library hopes to continue with two times for Prime Time Preschool and once per year for the Prime Time Family event.  The activities consist of a meal together, reading as a group a book that the families received the week before and have read together, a center activities series, and back together at the end. Looks like lots of literacy fun!




2018 JumpStart Grant / Grand Valley State University

Linguistic Summer Lecture Series across the upper Michigan with Dr. Wil Rankinen.  Upper Peninsula (U.P.) English, also known as Yooper English, or colloquially as Yoopanese is a variety of American English native to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (locally abbreviated as “U.P.” and the basis for the endonym “Yooper”). The purpose of this lecture series was to 1) highlight the unique features of how English is spoken across the UP,
2) show how di fferences in language use indexes di fferences in identity, and 3) establish why UP English should be considered a legitimate variety of American English.  Click here for more information.



2018 JumpStart Grant / Dominican Literacy Center

Funds were awarded to purchase reading and math books for their tutoring program.  Dominican Literacy Center in Detroit provides a tutoring service and conducive learning environment which will help adults improve their reading, speaking, listening, writing, mathematics, and basic computer skills.


2018 JumpStart Grant / UPHS-Marquette Family Medicine Residency Program

The grant provided funds to purchase books for wellness visits to the clinic doctor.  This funding allowed the MFMRP  to purchase/receive 715 books for their Reach Out and Read program, which is initiated in 2018.  Reach Out and Read provides a framework for medical offices to provide books, use the books as teaching tools to engage parents and children and model health behaviors.  One of the major drivers that influences children’s overall physical health, cognitive development, and achievement potential is a simple factor; their early exposure to reading.  Fostering literacy skills within the first 5-6years helps set the stage for success later in life.  Reading aloud to children boosts curiosity and creative brain development, strengthens family bonds, and reduces pediatric stress and anxiety.  The age range is six months to five-years-old, so children can receive up to 10 books throughout the 10 wellness visits in that age span. The Reach Out and Read Program says that 95% of the brain is formed in the first six years of life. Read more here






2018 JumpStart Grant / NPS/HNF – Hiawatha Interpretative Assoc, Munising

Grant funds allowed for Project WILD and Project Learning Tree Professional Development Curriculum guides to enhance outdoor education for schools & agencies personnel.  The Hiawatha Interpretive Association is a nonprofit that provides the public with interpretative, educational and informational opportunities that add to the public’s use, enjoyment and understanding of the natural, cultural, historical and recreational resources of the forest. Hiawatha Interpretative Association is in partnership with Hiawatha National Forest, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore and MSU Extension. Pictured below are 24 enthusiastic participants were recently trained to use both curriculum guides.  The workshop was held at Clear Lake Education Center.





2017-2018 LLF Michigan’s First Legacy Award

In fall 2017, after  receiving several JumpStart grants the UPCM  was awarded LLF’s Michigan’s first Legacy Award.  This grant covers  fall 2017 and all 2018 to support successful Third Thursday Literacy Nights.  Insert photos from 4.2018 see FB for information

Arpil 2018 UPCM Third Thursday Literacy Night – Thank you, Mqte Symphony Orchestra, for sharing these lovely photos and for your participation in this literacy event!




 2017 Grant Recipients

We are pleased to announce in 2017 the LLF Michigan Board allocated over $11,000 to assist with a wide array of projects and activities through seven grants and a university scholarship.   (more information to come as we rebuild this page – more information and photos are on our FaceBook page.)


Bedford Elementary, Dearborn Heights District #7

JumpStart grant -“Say No to Summer Slide & Yes to Summer Pride”.  LLF Michigan allocated funds to purchase books for a with summer reading program.  For K. Moccio, of Bedford Elementary School, Dearborn Heights District #7, receiving a grant application for our JumpStart Financial Incentive Award enabled K. Moccio to purchase books for their summer reading program. This book project was featured in the Take a Stand Center at the Illinois Holocaust Museum. And, please join us as we congratulate K. Moccio for being a recipient of the Excellence in Education awards program started by the Michigan State Lottery. This award recognizes Michigan K-12 public school teachers and staff who are making a significant impact in the lives of Michigan students.  Pictured below are honor roll students helping to label the many program books.







Daisy Brook Elementary, Fremont Public Schools

2017 JumpStart Grant

“Books for the Colonial Period”.  This grant funded social studies books for a 5th grade classroom.  The following is a comment from the classroom educator  “I cannot begin to tell you how fabulous your grant monies have been to our classroom learning! It has been really fun watching the kids read to one another all of the interesting facts that they have found in the books, as well as to come to me with facts that they have found to be interesting! We have done some great writing pieces using the books and right now are finishing up a “Bring a Founding Father to Life’ project where they have also had to use the books to do some research.


Marquette Area Public Schools, Alternative HS writing survey
2017 JumpStart Grant

“Journaling in the Alternative English Classroom”.  This grant funded a survey for use of journals in a high school English classroom.  The personal journaling project was implemented using a published book of writing prompts.   Twenty-four (24) students in grades 9-12 took one or two of the Writing Hope Scale surveys.  Eleven (11) students in grades 9-12 took both Writing Hope Scale surveys.  After having positive experiences with personal journaling, students displayed increased motivation to write.  The cooperating teacher continued the project beyond the initial 8 weeks experience with NMU student teacher the classroom teacher continued on the project.




Marquette-Alger Great Start Collaborative (M-A GSC)
2017 JumpStart Grant

 “Baby’s First Book”. The  grant funds supported purchase of books “Sleep Baby Safe and Snug” for babies first books project, collaboration between M-A GSC and UP General Health System-Marquette .  The book was shared by the hospital staff and then was added to each take home bag for each family upon leaving the UP General Health System-Marquette. Families were asked to return a postcard after reading the book to the baby at home.  The book emphases safe and snug sleep habits and  routines. Reading to babies teaches a baby about communication. introduces concepts such as numbers, letters, colors, and shapes in a fun way, builds listening, memory, and vocabulary skills.


Ritter Elementary, Airport Schools 2017 JumpStart Grant

 “After School Book Club”.  This grant funded purchase of books for 2nd & 3rd students, and their parents to participate in an after school book club.


Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum 2017 JumpStart Grant

Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum hosted a series of literacy nights with their grant money.  Third Thursday Literacy Nights were created to help families learn the benefits of reading to each other and develop ways for children to track their increased reading delights and skills in a fun, activity filled environment.  In fall 2017, after  receiving several JumpStart grants the UPCM  was awarded LLF’s Michigan’s first Legacy Financial Incentive Award.  This grant covers  fall 2017 and all 2018 to support successful Third Thursday Literacy Nights.


Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum hosted a few fun literacy nights with their grant money – Pictured first is January’s event 2017. Deborah Choszczyck brought her book, Faeries of the Night: Good and Evil. The children listened as they sat on toadstools, they danced with the faeries and they saved Star Faerie from the Goblin! Way to go, UPCM! They made learning literacy fun for all.


The UPCM held another “Third Thursday Literacy Night” in February – this event was titled “Reading with Puppies” and was in celebration of the UP 200 race taking place that weekend. This event will featured activities around the theme while each child left with a wonderful new book! We were pleased to fund this grant so that this wonderful event was free and possible for everyone!