Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Need Resources? No Budget? Get What You Need!

Need supplies for your classroom? Have a limited budget? Have you heard of Donors Choose?

I often assume that all teachers know about Donors Choose, but recently discovered that many teachers out there have never heard of it! Especially newer teachers!

Well let me just tell want to know about this fabulous organization! Donors Choose is a place where teachers can post their classroom projects and supply requests and donors can choose to fund your request. While not every project gets funded, I have posted 4 projects/requests on Donors Choose, and 3 of the 4 have been fully funded! According to Donors Choose, 70% of projects are fully funded! So that's a pretty high chance!

And project funding just keeps growing!

Here are the projects I have had funded!

Donors Choose is completely free and works on a point system. The more points you earn, the more options you'll have and the more funding you can request. You can even request funds for a field trip and a class visitor, once you've earned enough points, or even seek funding for professional development for yourself such as curriculum guides, books, workshops, seminars, and even courses!

After you create an account and create your project, you'll shop and select the resources you need from their online vendors and if and when your project is fully funded, Donors Choose automatically ships the resources directly to you! Choose from many popular vendors that you know and love like Scholastic, Lakeshore, School Specialty, Amazon, Nasco, Kaplan, Best Buy, just to name a few!

Here's how easy it is! Select your project type.
Then tell a little about your students.

Next, choose your vendor and start shopping.

Summarize what's in your cart and continue.

Give your project a title and explain how your project will impact your students.
And that's it! Submit and Donors Choose will review your submission within 5 days and either approve it or provide you with suggestions or corrections that need to be made to help you have the greatest chances of being funded. 

Once it's approved and posted, sit back and wait for it to be funded! Sometimes your project will receive multiple donors, as donors can choose to partially fund your project or simply donate a few dollars. Each time a donor gives to your project, you will receive an email notification. 

You'll also receive a custom URL to share your project with others and if you start a project for submission and don't have time to finish, it will be saved to your drafts to return back to later.

Projects do have an expiration date and only remain on the site for a few months...unless it has changed, it was 4 months. If your project is not fully funded, your points used will be returned to you and any donors that donated will be credited. 

The only requirement Donors Choose has is a mandatory thank you package if your project is funded. You must upload an impact letter and pictures of the resources in action to Donors Choose within a certain timeline that will be forwarded on to your donor(s). They respect student privacy, don't allow last names or uniform logos to show and provide photo releases for parents to sign. 

It doesn't get much easier than that! Donors Choose has allowed me to obtain resources for my students that I otherwise would not have been able to provide for my students. They are making a difference and impacting the lives of so many children! Allow them to make a difference in the lives of your students and submit your project TODAY! :)

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  1. How do you work with the requirement that you submit a photo of your class? In special ed there are so many confidentiality rules, that I don't think I'd be able to upload a picture of my kids and then ask for materials for my special ed class!

    1. Hi, your profile pic can be anything. It doesn't have to be of your students. You only have to upload pics of the resources in action if your project is funded and you can do this without showing any faces in the photos.


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