Krieger Schechter Wins $1,000 BGE Grant

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013015_krieger_schechter_briefKrieger Schechter Day School was awarded $1,000 by Baltimore Gas and Electric for its entry in the company’s Wires Down Video Challenge.

The school was one of 11 elementary schools awarded prizes out of 26 video submissions from 24 participating schools. The $10,000 winner was Sarah M. Roach Elementary School in Baltimore City; Northwood Elementary School in Baltimore City won $5,000. There were three $3,000 winners, and KSDS was one of six $1,000 winners.

The students had to make a video about downed wires using BGE’s famed “Wires Down” song, which debuted in a 2000 commercial that won an Emmy Award.

Alex Thaler, the school’s science teacher, was teaching the fourth-graders about electricity when it came to their attention that BGE was holding the contest. They decided to enter and came up with comic book imagery for their video.

“It was really the fourth-graders’ idea. One of them said ‘Let’s have the BGE workers be super heroes and they’re fighting these evil downed wires,’” he said. “That’s how it evolved into super hero versus villain.”

Over the next three to four weeks, the class practiced the song, came up with choreography, made costumes and turned the class into a movie studio, complete with a blue screen. The video was shot in two class periods, and Thaler edited the video himself.

Last week, the school found out the video won the $1,000 grant. The money will support the lower school’s science program.

“It was great. There were cheers in the classrooms, and faculty were congratulating the fourth-graders,” Thaler said. “It was really a feeling of accomplishment, and I think the students saw that what they did in the classroom really had a real-life appreciation, and that’s what I was aiming for.”

He hopes to enter the contest, in its third year, every year.

To date, BGE has awarded almost $81,000 to 27 elementary schools in Central Maryland through the contest. To view the winners, including Krieger Schechter’s video, visit bgevideochallenge.com.

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