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Please begin with an informative title:

Diary header banner for Daily Kos Inoculation Project diaries.
Solid science education is the best inoculation against ignorance.
The Inoculation Project, founded in 2009 by hyperbolic pants explosion, is a group of Kossacks who gather weekly to combat the anti-science push in conservative America by providing direct funding to science and math projects in red state classrooms. Our conduit is DonorsChoose.org, a thirteen-year-old organization rated highly by both Charity Navigator and the Better Business Bureau. Here's a little introductory video about DonorsChoose. DonorsChoose.org allows you to make direct contributions to specific, vetted projects in public school classrooms, resulting in tremendous and immediate impacts from small dollar donations. Each week, we focus on funding a single small-dollar project at a time, in a traditionally red state classroom and preferably in a high-poverty district.
Look for us every SUNDAY morning at 10 AM ET/ 7 AM PT.
 photo Partystreamer_zpsa9cdbc79.jpg
Last week, we completed our 300th project at DonorsChoose.org! We're very grateful to our donors, as well as to our friends who help us reach more eyes with recs, tips, republishes, shares, and tweets -- we want so much to help these classrooms, and we know you do too!

In addition to our projects today, we have a "photo quilt" to share, with our favorite pictures of some of our completed projects # 200-300 taken by the teachers. Each photo is a link -- if you click it, you'll open the project in a new tab and see the teacher's thank-you note and larger versions of all its photos.

Meanwhile, we'd love your help with this week's projects. As usual, even the smallest donation can make a big difference to one classroom. You never know what lesson will inspire a child to a lifetime of learning and a love of rational thought!



You must enter an Intro for your Diary Entry between 300 and 1150 characters long (that's approximately 50-175 words without any html or formatting markup).

This Week's Main Project
Project: Identifying Metal Pollutants in Water

Resources Needed: Chemicals and test tubes in order to perform an analytical chemistry experiment, looking for metal pollutants in water.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Sevier County High School, Sevierville, Tennessee
Total Cost: $544.33
Still Needed: $197.17 COMPLETED! Please see bonus projects!
Expires: Jun 30, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Ms. South:

My Students: We all have heard of the danger of metal contaminants in our water. My students will be performing a qualitative analysis on water samples, looking for the presence of copper, iron and other metals. This activity presents an opportunity to tie a laboratory activity to an issue important to everyone.

My school is located in a high poverty rural area. We are offering AP Chemistry for the first time next year, and my students are thrilled! My goal is to provide a rigorous science course for my students so that they will graduate truly ready for college-level coursework. By being able to offer this lab, my students will gain experience in qualitative analysis. In addition, my students will gain an appreciation for how analytical chemistry impacts their lives.

My Project: My school district is in a county that borders a national park. My students are surrounded by breathtaking views. However, many residents of our area are not environmentally responsible. Their actions have led to contaminants that pose a threat to everyone in our area. This lab activity will open my students' eyes to how they, with a proper science education, can make a positive impact on their community.

As an educator, I know that hands-on activities are an amazing motivational tool. Students LOVE the opportunity to see the connection between what they read and hear to what they can accomplish with test tubes and reagents. I would love the opportunity to bring this lab activity to my students and thank you, in advance, for your help.

Donations of ANY size DID make a BIG difference!

Great Smoky Mountains Park sign
We try to focus on the main project until it is completely funded, and then move on to the bonus project. If a project doesn't meet its funding goal by its deadline, it dies and any donations to it are referred to their donors to be moved to another project. For that reason, we don't like to split our sometimes limited resources between two open projects. Of course the choice of project to which you donate (if any!) is entirely yours.
Bonus Project #1
When the main project is finished, let's work on this one.
Project: I Want To Be An Astronaut!

Resources Needed: A globe, a telescope kit, a magnetic solar system, 9 astronomy books, and 2 astronomy e-books.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Holmsley Elementary School, Houston, Texas
Total Cost: $296.68
Still Needed: $176.68 COMPLETED!
Expires: Apr 17, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Mrs. Caesar:

My Students: What did you want to be when you grew up? A doctor, teacher, scientist...? I have kids who want to be an astronaut!

I teach fourth and fifth graders in a program called the New Arrival Center. We are in an elementary school in a big city in Texas. All of my students are new to the United States and are learning to speak English. I teach language arts, social studies, and science. My students come to me from Vietnam, Mexico, Puerto Rico, China, Japan, Ukraine, El Salvador, and the Philippines. They love learning English and love school!

My Project: I am requesting materials for our Astronomy Unit. It is important that the students have hands-on activities and many supplemental reading materials. We will be able to learn about the solar system by using our magnetic planets. I will use the Globe to demonstrate why we have seasons and how our the Earth rotates. The class will make their own telescope. Hopefully, this will inspire some of my students to want to ask their parents about astronomy and stargazing! I have also requested books about planets, astronomy, and astronauts. I will use these books during instruction time and students will have these books available to read during class time.

My students need a globe, a telescope kit, a magnetic solar system, 9 astronomy books, and 2 astronomy e-books. This project is important because my students need many opportunities to develop their science vocabulary. It is crucial that they know that they can be whatever they want when they grow up. I want all of my students to go to college. Your generous donation and support will help my students succeed in science!

Donations of ANY size DID make a BIG difference!
magnetic solar system kit
Bonus Project #2
When bonus project #1 is finished, let's work on this one.
Project: Science Explosion

Resources Needed: Sets of books on their science topics, individual books on topics for introducing topics, petri dishes, magnets, and compost containers for experiments.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Cartersville Elementary School, Cartersville, Georgia
Total Cost: $219.60
Still Needed: $194.60 COMPLETED!
Expires: Jun 07, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Mrs. Ruff:

My Students: Science comes to life when it is in front of you! My students love science, and experiments are the best way to learn science.

My 44 students are eight and nine years old. Some of them are special education students with learning or behavior disorders, while some of my students are general education students that are quite bright. They attend an elementary school that holds over 1,100 third, fourth, and fifth grade students. My students are kind and get the most wonderful compliments from other adults in the community ("Your class cheers one another on instead of competing with one another, " our music teacher informed me.) I teach math, science, and social studies but most of my class loves reading. They want to read about what I am teaching them. I want to fill their craving for reading with books that will reinforce what I am teaching. I also want to be able to do experiments that will make science come to life. My special needs students can read on lower levels and love to be read to! I want to have books to read to them as well as books that they can read on their own.

My Project: Your donation will allow my students to hear and read about science topics that are in the third grade standards. You will help them see items decompose in soil and the effect magnets have on paper clips. My students will be able to use these books to help build their knowledge of rocks, minerals, and soil. My students will be able to conduct science experiments on magnetism and heat. Your donation will give my students knowledge!

This project means a lot to me because I know how much my students love books and how much they want to do experiments. I want to teach students, but more than that I want to create life long learners within each of my precious students. With this project I know that my students' needs will be better met and that their minds will be full of wonderful information about science!

Donations of ANY size DID make a BIG difference!
properties of earth books
Bonus Project #3
When bonus project #2 is finished, let's work on this one.
Project: What Is In That Soil?

Resources Needed: A soil quality testing kit for AP Environmental Science.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Bradwell Institute, Hinesville, Georgia
Total Cost: $513.29
Still Needed: $188.65 COMPLETED!
Expires: Jun 01, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Ms. Dill:

My Students: Students need real life practical experiences to enhance their understanding of the natural world. They see soil everyday but do not understand the properties that make up the soil. They need this soil quality test kit to experience hands-on activities to determine the properties in the soil.

The majority of the students at my school come from a low socioeconomic background. We live in a military community with a highly transient population. School becomes a safe haven for many of the students in my school. I strive to make my classroom a fun "getaway" for my students. They are allowed to experience science in a new way that many have not had before. Science comes alive in my class, and the students can see things in a new light.

AP Environmental Science is a new course in our county that I will be teaching for the first time. Enthusiasm is brewing for the students enrolled in this course. The students are excited to learn with hands-on activities but need the resources to be able to do this!

My Project: Since the course has never been taught in the county, we do not have the materials that we need to start the hands-on learning process. We are in need of a soil test kit. This kit will allow students the opportunity to see what the properties in the soil are and extrapolate that knowledge to the problems in our society with soil composition. They will be able to see how the soil affects the world that we live in.

Students are in dire need of hands-on activities in science. They need to see that science is fun and can be an intriguing career field. My AP Environmental Science students are eager to learn; all they need is the resources to make that possible. The students will be appreciative of the donation made to our classroom! Thanks in advance!

Donations of ANY size DID make a BIG difference!
Bonus Project #4
When bonus project #3 is finished, let's work on this one.
Project: Physics Of Sound

Resources Needed: A tuning fork set, 15 slinkys, and a logitech speaker system for labs on: finding the speed of sound, wave characteristics and interference.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: West High School, Salt Lake City, Utah
Total Cost: $187.36
Still Needed: $57.68 COMPLETED!
Expires: Jul 31, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Mr. Arce-Larreta:

My Students: Science and engineering will provide most of the future jobs and industry in our country.

Our students are 9-12th graders in an urban city high school. About 60 percent are on fee waivers due to low income. My classrooms include a diverse mixture of low-income students as well as high income high achieving students. I teach AP and IB Physics and general physics.

My Project: The students ability to apply concepts from the book to real world applications will help them understand and learn the material. Engaging students with hands-on learning will also help many students who do not learn from a lecture or from reading textbooks.

The tuning forks will be used to estimate the speed of sound in a resonance lab. The tuning forks when held over an closed pipes will resonate at harmonics which can then be used to calculate the speed of sound.

The slinkies will be used for a hands on lab to generate longitudinal and transverse mechanical waves. Many wave characteristics can be generated by these objects to introduce students to wave mechanics.

The dual computer speakers will emit sound waves with matching frequencies from two sources. They will naturally interfere constructively and destructively with each other. The students walk around the room and hear differences firsthand.

These tools will be used in engaging activities in the science laboratory.

Helping us with this project will help future inspire future scientists and engineers. Sound engineering is vital to the the current music industry. Students love learning this topic as music often connects them to physics and science.

See you next week!

Cultivating Young Gardeners
Integers!!! Start Your Engines!
Aerial Photograph of School
Math Manipulatives for Autism
Ready... Set...Grow!!! Give a Hoot! Owl Pellet Dissection and Butterfly Pavilion A New Physics Class - Can You See It? It's Electric!
Research Laboratory: The Beginning Making Gold Out of Garbage! Fun with Fractions Hungry Caterpillars And Moody Bugs
Science is Out of This World! Catapult Awesome! Science....It's Everywhere!! Isolating Copper by Electrolysis
Super Sorting Students Math and Science Through Literature! Earth, Moon Phases, Planets Recycling to Help Our Environment!
It's Fun to Hold Science in Your Hand! Modern Microscopes: First Time Observations Time for Learning!! Reef Sleep Library
Science is Out of This World! Weather Station Energy and the Great Outdoors!
Explore to Learn II
Creeps and Flows - Soil Erosion Green Thumb Gardening Zoom In: Seeing the Building Blocks of Life Simple Machine Legomania
Hungry Caterpillars And Moody Bugs It's Electric! Environmental Detectives in the River Valley Ready... Set...Grow!!!
Super Scientists
Time for a Heart to Heart
Making A Splash With Waves
Linking Literacy and Math


Wow! Last week we had SIX completed projects! They are:

Wriggle, Grow, and Learn!: ESL kindergarten students in Kenner, LA will get a worm composter for their school vegetable garden.

Physics! Capacitor and Thermometer Labs: Utah physics classes will receive capacitors for their electricity lab and thermometers for their thermodynamics lab.

The Green Team - Recycling & Conservation Warriors!: A rural Louisiana high school will get an assortment of basic science supplies.

Help Bring the Ocean to The Classroom: A class in South Georgia will receive a saltwater aquarium.

Scientific Inquiry in 2nd Grade: Tennessee second-graders will do projects on weather and the states of matter.

Fluttering Arthropods: Zoology students in a Florida high school will get butterfly sanctuaries and Painted Lady larvae ready to metamorphose.

You can see the teachers' thank-you notes at the links above. Many thanks to all contributors!

See our list of successfully funded projects. We're up to 305!

When projects are not fully funded by their expiration date, donors are contacted by DonorsChoose and asked to choose another project to which to redirect their donations.

How is the poverty level defined at DonorsChoose.org?
Poverty level refers to the percentage of students at a given school who qualify for free and reduced lunch, which is considered a measure of economic need. To be deemed eligible for free lunch, a student's family income must be within 130% of the poverty line (a max of $29,055 for a family of four). For reduced lunch, the family income must be within 185% of the poverty level (a max of $41,348 for a family of four).

Schools with 10%-39% of students receiving free/reduced lunch are denoted as "moderate poverty" while schools with more than 40% of students receiving free/reduced lunch are denoted as "high poverty". For projects submitted from a school where free lunch rate data is unavailable or unreliable, "Poverty Data Unavailable" will appear.

More information:
DonorsChoose.org main page
DonorsChoose.org blog
About DonorsChoose.org
All DonorsChoose.org math & science projects search results

We are in no way affiliated with DonorsChoose.org, or any of the classroom projects presented for funding.


You are welcome to use The Inoculation Project avatar as your DonorsChoose avatar if you wish. If you need instructions for uploading it to your DonorsChoose profile, you'll find them in this diary.

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Originally posted to The Inoculation Project on Sun Apr 07, 2013 at 07:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by J Town, SciTech, and Dream Menders.

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