Skip to main content

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, a thirteen-year-old organization rated highly by both Charity Navigator and the Better Business Bureau. Here's a little introductory video about DonorsChoose. 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: Circuit Circus

Resources Needed: Light bulbs, wire, bells, and motors to experiment with electromagnetism and build electrical circuits.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Whitebead School, Pauls Valley, Oklahoma
Total Cost: $168.04
Still Needed: $113.04 COMPLETED! Please see bonus project below.
Expires: Aug 23, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Mrs. Thompson:

My Students: Did you ever have the opportunity to play with electricity as a child? My class offers a safe way to experiment with electricity and how it all comes together to provide the modern-day conveniences we all have.

My school is a small Pre-K through 8th grade school in a rural area. Since the students attend our school for up to 10 years, we have a family-type atmosphere. The majority of our students are white, with Hispanic students running a close second. Our school enrollment is 53% free/reduced lunch.

My Project: In my class, students are given wires, sockets, bulbs, batteries, and hinge switches to experiment with building different types of circuits. This is an extension of my curriculum addressing energy and electricity. So often, kids (and adults too) take for granted the simple conveniences around them, such as electricity. I direct my students' attention at the "whys" of those simple, everyday items that we often overlook.

I have supplies for these activities already, however, some of my materials have been used for many, many years and need to be replaced. Light bulbs have burned out, wire has run out, and bells have broken from overuse. I have experimented with "The World's Simplest Motor" and believe that it is a wonderful way to teach the relationship between electricity and magnetism.

I once heard, "learning science from a textbook is like taking a vacation by reading a travel brochure." If science is not experienced, it is really not learned at all. I try to implement hands-on learning as much as possible in my classroom so that I know my students just don't have knowledge but experience as well.

Donations of ANY size DID make a BIG difference!

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: STEM In The Classroom

Resources Needed: A microscope, a primary science set, a flower model and gears and gizmos to add more science, technology, engineering, and math in the classroom!
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Skiles Test Stem School, Indianapolis, Indiana
Total Cost: $161.98
Still Needed: $151.98  $26.02
Expires: Sep 12, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Ms. Magill:

My Students: To keep up with the ever changing world, students today must be knowledgeable in science, technology, engineering, and math. Most of the students in the classroom come from high poverty backgrounds where they may not be getting access to materials like this.

Most of the students in the class come from high poverty. They are eager to learn about these topics and are often the most engaged during the science part of the day. I want to foster this learning and allow them to become experts with science, technology, engineering, and math! STEM is very important and I want to allow students to freely explore topics they are interested in.

My Project: I am requesting a microscope so that students can get a closer look at the world around them. I also included a primary science kit so that they are able to use and see what real scientific materials look like. The gear set is to allow them to do some engineering activities and the flower model allows them to see the outside world close up.

This project is important to me because the world continues to change and I want my students to be ready in every way possible.

These donations will allow the students to explore the world around them.

Donations of ANY size can make a BIG difference!

Our Dollars at Work
Students from Ms. Fizer's class enjoying their new scientific calculators, from the project, Calculators Make it All Add Up.
grinning boy with calculator
happy class with calculators

There are additional photos at the link.


Last week's main project, Whooo Did I Eat?, was completed. High-poverty students near a Georgia military base will learn about the food chain by dissecting owl pellets.

An open project from an earlier week, Helps Us Be Hands-On with Science, was also finally rescued with a Kossack assist. Elementary school students in North Carolina will receive materials for a variety of hands-on science labs.

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 321!

As of Saturday night, these bonus projects from previous weeks remain open:

Project: Aiming High with Physics
Expires: Aug 09, 2013
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
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. (from
More information: main page blog
All math & science projects search results

We are in no way affiliated with, 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 May 19, 2013 at 07:00 AM PDT.

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

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site