Upchurch wins $1,000 grant

Upchurch wins $1,000 grant

Science teacher Nathan Upchurch receives a $1,000 check for winning the One Class at a Time grant from Jan Elkins, the Community Affairs Director at KTBS (Channel 3).

Story by Autumn Sehy, Sports Editor

The classroom was silent one second, working on bell work. The next, it was full of cheerleaders and KTBS television reporters and various administrators who presented astronomy and physics teacher Nathan Upchurch with an oversized check for $1,000 for winning the One Class as a Time Grant.

“I’d actually heard about it many years ago, and I was fortunate to receive one in 2005, when I was at another school district,” Upchurch said. “I was needing a $1,000, or at least that amount of money, and I knew this grant was available. I applied to KTBS.com which is where the grant application was.”

Upchurch plans on using the grant to buy binoculars for his astronomy class. He had been researching binoculars and found that they were preferred by astronomers.

“Your eyes can see about 3,000 stars, but with binoculars you can see about 100,000 stars,” Upchurch said. “I wanted something the students could do at home, and that’s really what astronomy’s all about, seeing the night sky.”

Next year, students will use the grant money both inside and outside of the classroom.

“They’ll use the binoculars and look in the sky to find a nebula or maybe a star or a particular galaxy,” Upchurch said. “We could also have things happening, for example, eclipses of certain planets. There could be meteor showers or special events happening. It may be fun to find satellites and maybe get a better look at the international space station floating across the night sky.”