The California Table Grape Commission, Fresno, is offering up to $5,000 in mini-grants to teachers in the state’s grape growing San Joaquin and Coachella valleys.

The commission will award 10 “innovation in teaching” grants in 2010, each worth up to $500, according to a news release. The grants will go to elementary through high school teachers who submit innovative project ideas to help educate students.

The 2010 grants will mark the 18th year of the commission’s program. The commission has awarded more than $75,000 in mini-grants, according to the release.

The projects submitted for the grant applications need not focus on table grapes or even on agriculture. The applications may include ideas for classroom instruction, field trips and outdoor instruction and group projects. The projects must be completed by the end of the 2009-10 academic year, the release said.

In the past, grant winning projects included plant growth and bee pollination studies, solar powered races, an interactive classroom store and a field trip to a museum.

Mini-grant flyers and applications may be downloaded from the commission’s Web site, Applications must be submitted to the commission no later than Jan. 18. Winners will be notified in February.