Sunday, February 24, 2008

Donors Choose

A couple of years ago, I saw a commercial for a program called "Donors Choose." It is a website where teachers can post needs that the school system won't/can't provide for them and individual donors can fund them. It is really amazing how many things are needed for schools that teachers actually have to buy for themselves or just live without. You can search by school, region, subject, % of low income, etc. for projects that seem like something you want to fund. My first donation was to buy a classroom subscriptions to Weekly Reader and Time for Kids because Weekly Reader was always my favorite in Elementary School and it makes me sad that a lot of kids can't get it anymore. Since then I've kept going back.

As good as it feels to know that I've helped some students, the best part is the thank you package. Donors Choose sends a disposable camera with each project so the teacher can take pictures of the students using the items that you sent and they usually send thank-you letters from the kids as well. Every time I get a thank you package, it makes me so happy that I just want to go back and donate more! The kids are just so cute!

Here are some excerpts from letters I got today. Read them and then go to and pick your own projects to fund! I love it because you know exactly where the money you donate is going and exactly what is being purchased. There really is very little waste in this program.

"Dear Donor, Thank you so much for donating books to our classroom. I can't believe your class used most of your money to get us thirty books! Getting us five books would be nice but to get us thirty books that's amazing!"

"Joey Pigza is funny. I think in the book Joey Pigza: Loses Control he can spend a little more time with his dad because his dad is wired. But he can't spend too much time with his dad or with his grandma either because his dad and his grandma smoke and smoking is bad for you. Also in the book Joey Pigze: Loses Control he shouldn't put Pablo (Joey's dog) in the glove compartment and do harmful stuff to him. Thank you again for the books."

"Well thanks for sending Tucker Joey Pigza books. Everyone loves Joey Pigza books. You should read some Joey Pigza books. This is very nice of to send us books. That's very nice. That's what you need to know. Thanks!"

Such cute kids! Well, I'm off to search through more projects to fund! - Teachers ask. You choose. Students learn. - GO


Ashley N said...

Thanks for doing this. I should go and post some requests ;) I had always heard but never knew until this year just how much teachers spend on their classrooms.

Anonymous said...

I love that you posted this. What a great idea. Being a teacher you don't realize until the end of the year just how much you have spent of your own money. Of course it is totally worth it, but it can be a hefty amount after a year. Its amazing how stickers, crafts, books, etc. can add up.