Early this June, my principal informed me that come September I would be teaching a K/1 combo class. While I was thrilled to take on the challenge, the planner in me kicked into gear immediately. Kinder has been my home for many years so I quickly started thinking about not only the first grade curriculum and standards, but also about how I could manage the two grades effectively. My school’s population is low-income with 87% English learners, so every minute (and dollar) counts. I knew that getting the supplies to support these students could add up very quickly, and needed a plan of attack.
I had heard about 99Papers.org from family members and colleagues, and figured that I would give it a shot. After touring the website and creating an account, I began creating my first project. I then spread the word through email, Facebook, my blog, and word-of-mouth. I quickly received my first donation from my favorite volunteer (grandma). A few weeks went by with no more donations. Tempted to purchase the supplies myself, I waited “patiently”; having faith that many people out there support education and our schools, and that one of them would stumble upon my project. Sure enough, I was right. A donor from California contributed and I was halfway there.
Only three short days later my project was fully funded. Starbucks generously completed not only my project, but also another project from my school! I quickly spread the good news and happily celebrated with a latte. As someone who has spent thousands of dollars on my classroom over the years, I cannot express how easy and truly amazing this experience has been. I am so grateful and am not only motivated to create a new project, but also become a donor!