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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 twelve-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.

This Week's Main Project
Project: Super Scientists

Resources Needed: Resources for exploration of science concepts, including hands on materials and books.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Sunnyview Primary School, Knoxville, Tennessee
Total Cost: $458.95
Still Needed: $179.47 COMPLETED! Please see bonus #2!
Expires: Dec 24, 2012

Teacher's Comments from Ms. Bartlett:

My Students: Science can be very exciting for primary aged students but the resources that are available for science education are minimal.

I have a classroom of twenty second grade students. Our school is a small primary school in a rural community. Our school only goes up to second grade. Many of my students have parents who also attended our school as children. My students love to explore and learn about new things, especially science.

My Project: Primary students need to be introduced to the basics of science but science teaching resources are not readily available to us. I am requesting hands-on materials including a microscope, rock and mineral samples, and a magnet kit. I am also requesting science books that will help my students learn about science concepts in a kid-friendly manner. Using theses science resources, my students will be able to explore difficult science concepts through experiments and learning stations. My students will be able to read about science in literature that is on their level and then have fun exploring the concepts.

It is extremely important to encourage young students to learn and explore science concepts. These students are our next doctors and researchers so a good science base in primary school will help prepare them for their future.

COMPLETED!
Please see bonus project #2!
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: Math and Science Through Literature!

Resources Needed: Math and science stories for our classroom library and book boxes to organize them.  
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Cooper Elementary School, Tulsa, Oklahoma
Total Cost: $546.44
Still Needed: $155.57 COMPLETED!
Expires: Feb 07, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Ms. Worcester:

My Students: Good books can make math and science come alive! Help my students learn to love both subjects with engaging read aloud books.

My students attend a low-income elementary school in Oklahoma. Third grade is an important year that will set them up for success in the upper elementary grades and beyond. It is my job to ensure that they master grade-level objectives and develop the attitudes and work habits necessary to achieve at high levels and reach their future goals!

My Project: I am requesting math stories and a set of Magic School Bus chapter books to use for read alouds and independent reading. These books will serve as engaging jumping off points for a number of different topics in math and science. Listening to math and science read alouds will help my students stay engaged, draw connections, and access higher-level content. Challenging concepts are easier to understand when they are communicated in the form of fun, illustrated stories! Integrating read alouds into math and science lessons will also help my students improve their literacy skills by exposing them to new vocabulary and genres of literature.

One of my goals as a teacher is to help my students develop a love of math and science by exposing them to engaging, relevant, and rigorous material. Read aloud books will capture my students' interests, allowing them to internalize the concepts we are learning and access more challenging content. Teaching math and science through literature will prepare my students for higher-level Common Core standards while simultaneously building their literacy skills.

COMPLETED!
Donations of ANY size can make a BIG difference!
Bonus Project #2

Lately, we've had a lot of success and paid for our projects early, leaving no way for latecomers to participate. While that's great, it's also a missed opportunity to help one more teacher. If you arrive and find bonus project #1 finished, please direct your donations to this project. We'll return to it as needed in future diaries.
Project: Energy and the Great Outdoors!

Resources Needed: Binoculars, compasses, classroom resources, to support their learning about alternative energy sources, and a hands-on energy kit.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Mt. Vernon School, Raleigh, North Carolina
Total Cost: $349.28
Still Needed: $124.64 $89.64
Expires: Feb 04, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Ms. Campbell:

My Students: We can't wait for our overnight field trip to learn about environmental education and alternative forms of energy! With the high poverty level at our school, our budget will cover the necessities, but we need help to get the materials we need to make this a truly valuable learning experience.

My students attend an public, alternative, middle school. They come to us when things are not going the way they should at their base schools. For most of our students, they were facing failing grades and discipline challenges at school and difficult financial situations and family struggles at home.

We provide smaller class sizes, more individualized attention, modified classwork, remediation opportunities, and most importantly, the chance to get back on track. We work to build positive teacher-student relationships and provide unique, motivating, educational experiences.

We want to help kids succeed and then build on that success, as they move on in their academic career toward a more positive future. Along the way, we also try to highlight the importance of respect, positive peer interactions, citizenship, and responsible choices.  

My Project: Later this year, we will be taking our students on an overnight field trip to a nearby park. This will be a great chance for these kids to learn more about the natural world and form great school-related memories with their classmates and teachers.

Our main academic goal for the trip with be environmental education, with a focus on energy (newly added to our 7th grade science curriculum), and the environmental tie-in to alternative forms of energy.

The materials I am requesting include a hands-on energy kit so the kids can build a solar car and complete other hands-on activities, an up-to-date resource book that presents alternative energy within the STEM framework, and a Clever Catch Ball for an engaging game to review all they are learning.

In addition, the binoculars, compasses, and whistles will enable us to plan activities throughout our two-day trip to foster a respect for the environment and a better understanding of the footprint we leave upon it.

I want to change my students' experiences one day and one student at a time. Our kids are used to failing. They fail to follow the rules, fail to make good friends, and fail to learn the way they should. With your support, we can provide experiences for success, experiences that matter, and experiences that will help them grow and achieve in special and meaningful ways!

DONATE HERE
Donations of ANY size can make a BIG difference!


Our Dollars at Work
Students from Ms. Ploutz's Indiana class delightedly receive their books and materials about the solar system, from the project, Science is Out of This World!

Indiana kids receive books about solar system


Indiana kids look at books about solar system

There are additional photos at the link.


Housekeeping:

Last week's main project, Density Matters!, was completed. Eighth-grade science students in Georgia will receive kits and calculators to help them understand the density of matter. You can see the teacher's thank-you note at the link. Many thanks to all contributors!

This morning I mis-reported the bonus project last week, Integers!!! Start Your Engines!, as having been completed. I have no idea why I thought that, but it is still open and we'll revisit it before it expires if it remains open. My apologies!

See our list of successfully funded projects. We're up to 224!

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.

More information:
DonorsChoose.org main page
DonorsChoose.org blog
DonorsChoose.org donor FAQ
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.

Donors Choose avatar for Inoculation Project readers to use.

Originally posted to The Inoculation Project on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:00 AM PDT.

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

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