What do teachers really need as gifts this holiday season? Perhaps digital cameras for their students for a journalism project? Maybe art supplies for a student project on marketing? You can find out by surfing to the crowdfunding site donorschoose.org.
In case you aren't familiar with the term, crowdfunding is raising money by pooling the financial resources of many people to help a few. The concept has become popular through online sites like Kickstarter.com or Indiegogo.com where people post information about the project that needs funding and how much money is needed. Then they solicit donations from friends, acquaintances and anyone else on the Internet.
Donorschoose.org is for teachers. On the site, teachers post a description of what they need funds for, the amount needed and when they need it by. You can find many teachers from Georgia who have posted the projects they are trying to raise money for. Many of the teachers mention that their schools are in high poverty areas so they really need the help.
Ms. Carter for example, teaches at Haven Elementary in Savannah, Georgia. She is raising money for her iDesign: Fashion Forward Entrepreneurs project. She writes: “My students attend a school where more than 90% of them receive free lunch and reside below the poverty level....They are eager to learn and want to branch out beyond their "hoods".
Through the project, her students will create business logos, marketing strategies and pieces for a fashion line. She needs money for craft fabric, fabric scraps and scissors.
Ms. Lovin an art teacher at Allen Elementary school in Columbus, Ga meanwhile needs a drying rack and paint trays for her students’ projects.
And Ms. Davidson from Unity Elementary School in Lagrange is trying to fund hands on solar system kits so that her students learn standards.
If you are a teacher interested in listing a project, it’s an easy process. Simply go to the for teachers area, set up a profile, upload a photo of your class and then put in a description of your project. And you are on your way.
Google has also seen the value of the site by the way. The company is offering its Google Chrome Book to public schools for $99 (it usually goes for $249.) through donorschoose.org.