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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 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.

This Week's Main Project
Project: Frog Dissection

Resources Needed: 4 packs of frogs to dissect.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Fisher Magnet School Upper Academy in Detroit, MI
Total Cost: $217.75
Still Needed: $217.75 Completed!
Expires: Nov 12, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Ms. Callaghan:

My Students: Think back to when you were young and you observed that 'thing' that filled you with such amazement and curiosity about the world. That is what I witness as my students do their first dissection.

Who are my students...they are learners that need to get their hands on science. Reading from the text is not enough for them they need to see, feel and hear science. We are an urban school in a large industrial city. Our school is located in a neighborhood that has seen better days.

My Project: The frog dissection allows my students to observe organ systems and how these systems are interconnected. We spend two months studying the different systems. After studying the organ systems we dissect the frogs for a real world experience and understanding as to how the body systems relate to one another.

After doing the dissection each year there are at least two or so students that make the statement that they want to be doctors. This lab opens students minds to the possibility of going into the medical field.

COMPLETED
Donations of ANY size can 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: Who is HeLa?

Resources Needed: My students each need a copy of "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks" to read throughout the year in order to engage in discussions about ethics in science.
School Poverty Level: High
Location: C E Murray Jr Sr High School in Greeleyville, SC
Total Cost: $341.79
Still Needed: $146.79 Completed! Thank you.
Expires: Dec 17, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Ms. Halmo:

My Students: Do you remember what it was like the first time you read a book that really made you think? My students have not yet discovered works of non-fiction that engage their minds, but they have also not read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.

My students love to read, especially works of fiction, but getting them excited about works of non-fiction is harder, and yet necessary to become critical thinkers in our global society. My students live in rural South Carolina and attend a Title 1 school where 98% of students are on free or reduced lunch. Each one of my students has a unique voice and view of the world, and just want to be heard.

My Project: With a class set of Rebecca Skloot's The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, my students will learn to analyze non-fiction text, think critically, engage in discussions, and hone their persuasive writing and presentation skills. Reading about Henrietta Lacks and her family will encourage my students to see science as a multifaceted field of study with ethical implications for the world around us.

Learning about cells in science class is one thing, but expanding literacy by digging deeper into the ethics of science behind cell culture will push my students to the level of rigor expected in college and prepare them to be successful citizens in our global society.

COMPLETED
Donations of ANY size DID make a BIG difference!



Cooling Projects
Our supporter Square Knot wrote a recent diary listing some DonorsChoose projects for classrooms that are way too hot for kids to learn. They are more expensive than the science projects we normally pick, since they are buying air conditioning in some form, but they are all open until at least September, so they have a chance to succeed. If you have a little extra, please consider helping a class cool off!

From Nobody Deserves a Learning Room Over 100 Degrees F.:
...during the summer, my students have to spend 5 to 6 hours everyday in a classroom where the thermometer can reach a temperature of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher... An air conditioner would be of great benefit to my students. We wouldn't need to worry about students fainting, or struggling to concentrate due to the heat.
UPDATE on Tuesday: THANK YOU to everyone! Not only were both of this week's projects completed, but those who stopped by late kept paying down another of the cooling projects, the one in Denver. Late last night, Nobody Deserves a Learning Room Over 100 Degrees F. was completed by a donor who appears to have triggered a matching donation! Yay!

These cooling projects are the only two that remain open from Square Knot's diary:

Portable Air Conditioner: New York NY. Expires Sep 26, 2013. Still needed: $475.65.

Too Hot to Learn: Paterson NJ. Expires Oct 25, 2013. Still needed: $523.28.


Housekeeping:

Last week's main project, Keeping Cool With Technology!, was completed. New Jersey elementary school students will have an air conditioner in their basement computer lab.

The bonus project last week, Rock and Roller Coaster, was also rescued with a Kossack assist. Middle-school students in Ohio will receive materials to create a roller coaster simulation.

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 347!

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. (from DonorsChoose.org)
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.

Donors Choose avatar for Inoculation Project readers to use.

Originally posted to The Inoculation Project on Sun Aug 25, 2013 at 07:01 AM PDT.

Also republished by J Town, Dream Menders, Kitchen Table Kibitzing, and SciTech.

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