Thank you SO DEEPLY for visiting my campaign. I have been on here 2 times for my classroom (in 8 years) and am back again, unfortunately. My school has been hit HARD this year and our budget is the smallest it has been since I came to my school 5 years ago We have been hit so hard that I am already asking for funds and school has technically not even started yet. I usually ask in February or March for a field trip or some books, but this year, I cannot even afford some basic things my students need. Before I ask for you to consider donating to my students, let me give you some background:
My name is Callie and I am a Kindergarten teacher at Aspire ERES Academy. We are a public-charter school in Fruitvale, Oakland in the east bay. I have been teaching for 8 years and 5 of them (including this year) have been at ERES. I will have 22 students this year who are pure nuggets! I know this fact as I had a Kindergarten Orientation at the end of this last school year and met many of my new students and families! And they are truly nuggets!
In most schools, parents supplement what schools cannot alone provide. Parents bring school supplies, donate money, there are fundrasiers for schools, a PTA, etc. But this is not the case for my students and my school. Most of my families try their best to donate snacks or boxes of tissues, but I cannot get everything I need just from my families.
I know you do not know my students, my families, or maybe even me. So the best comparison I can give you is this: imagine that in your job, you are asked to pay for most of the supplies that you need. And if you do not buy these supplies, you will not be doing your job to your best abilities and you would be letting down 22 people and their families. If you use a notebook, a pen or pencil, paper, anything you use daily, it must come out of your pocket. Now take that number and multiply it by 22. It seems crazy, at times, that teachers are given such small budgets, yet expected to provide everything for their students. I am that teacher. I want to provide it all for them. But I need your help.
If you know me, then you are probably tired of me. I am tired of me asking, too! I would like to have another year like last year where I had enough money to provide for my nuggets, but it is not the case this year. If you can contribute to my classroom one more time, it would mean the world to not only me, but also to my students, who are 4 and 5 years old, and who did not choose where they were born and into what SES either. My students don't have a say and are not in charge of their own success, really. But together, we can give my students what they need to have a successful year, build their literacy, and have a little fun! Here are the things and the amount that I am asking help for:
1. I need a new rug! My rug is too small to fit all 22 of my students and is covered in stains from over 5 years of 5 year olds and all the things that come out of them and off of them! I would love a rug that has built-in spots (like squares) so that every child has personal space and feels that they are not all on top of one another, because we know they do not have enough space in their own homes. The rug I would like to get is from Lakeshore Learning and is the most common rug that most teachers have. It has 30 rug spots (so students can have some space between them) and it is called "A Place for Everyone Classroom Carpet for 30." You can check it out on Lakeshore Learning. If you can believe it, the carpet costs $479.00!!! That is over half of my budget and I cannot afford it plus all of the pencils, erasers, glue sticks, chart paper, setence strips, books, bins, tape, etc.
2. Book Baggies: Two years ago, I got $1,000 and was able to really stock my classroom Library with so many awesome books! My school does not have a school library, so you can imagine how helpful that $1,000 was! In my class, students take home between 8-10 books every day, read them, bring them back to school, read them in school again, etc. and the cycle continues. I bought book baggies 2 years ago, but after all the travel between home and school, they were DESTROYED! I know it was a good sign that they were falling apart by the end of 2 years of use, but it means I have no book baggies for this new class. Students store their books in their baggies, bring them to recess and read them, take them home, and when we walk to our local, public library once a month, they get to check out 2 books and carry them in their book baggies; they feel very official! As such, we could really use some new ones. Here are the details of the baggies: they come in sets of 4, so I would need 6 Pack-N-Read Deluxe 12x14 book baggies that are $22.46 for 4 so $134.76 total. I want to continue the tradition of books going home every day and with this contribution, you will make that possible!
3. Alternative seating: Have you ever been forced to sit in a chair for 7.5 hours every day? I am sure most of you are! And I'm sure it doesn't feel great. Now imagine you are a squirrely 4 or 5 year old being asked to sit in a chair all day, when you have boundless energy, are a kinesthetic learner, and are sitting in the same chair that was used in classrooms probably since the 50's! I have so many students who just need a different form of seating so that they can focus better and still get all the movement they need out. I would love 12 Learniture Active Learning Stools (look these up! They are so cool!) for $54.60 each so $655.20 total. I will only keep about 4 of these stools in my room and I would like to offer the other stools to many of our students who are struggling with the conventions of traditional school and traditional seating, to see if they can be more successful and more focused.
4. An outdoor block set: In most schools, Kindergarteners have their own play area, a water station, a sandbox, blocks, their own playground, etc. None of this is the case at my school. My students share the playground with first and second graders and we do not have many outdoor activites. We have some magnet blocks, some balls, jump ropes, and a tiny playground shared by over 60 students at a time. Our students deserve to be creative and become the builders, engineers, and architects that we know they can be. I would like to give them the coolest block set known to Kindergarten teachers! I would like to get 1 set of the 70 piece medium block set by Imagination Playground. This is going to sound insane, but they are $749.95 total! Any contribution you give to these blocks would be so appreciated! Again, look these up!
So, let's do the math:
479 (rug)+134.76 (book baggies)+655.20 (moving stools)+749.95 (outdoor blocks)= $2,018.91
To make it a nice number, I am asking for $2,020.00. School starts on Tuesday, August 8th, and all teachers are already back and going to professional developments and working in our classrooms. If you can help, even a little, it would mean so much to me, my kids, and my families. I cannot express enough what your donation means and I am thankful for you, even if you just read this entire novel full of information!
UPDATE: We could really use more leveled readers! Those are books that are on the level of each individual student! If you can believe it, Kinder's read and they read A LOT! I changed he goal to $3,000 so that maybe I could get some new and more books for my kids! Thank you!!!!!
Let's show that all students deserve a quality education and access to it all, regardless of where they live. I appreciate you and I welcome anyone who would like to come and visit, read a book, bring a snack, teach a mini-lesson, to join us anytime! You can email me at [email redacted] and I would love to host you at my school, ERES!