Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Free Books!

Teachers tend to spend their own money on things for their classrooms, and it's even worse when you work at a Title 1 school. My students are in such need... they lack experiences, good nutrition, shoes that fit, opportunities to read at home, supplies and this list goes on. When I do a project at school and ask for donations, I usually get nothing at all from the parents. On the 100th Day of School, I put out a sign-up sheet with some pretty typical items to make our "ten groups of ten" snack: pretzels, marshmallows, raisins... but no one signed up and I ended up buying everything myself. I wasn't thrilled to spend the money, but I wanted my students to have the experience! I can do that, at least. I can't buy them all shoes...

But, listen up, teachers in the San Francisco Bay Area! There is a little gem of a place... It's more like tiny. And it's dusty. And the hours of operation aren't super-convenient. But it's there and it's amazing because anyone who works with children in need can go and get free books!

[caption id="attachment_215" align="aligncenter" width="245"] The Children's Book Project asks that you take your own bags when you go to get books for your students.[/caption]

Near the end of the school year, I read a Richard Allington research paper and decided that I wanted needed to send my students home with their own books to keep for the summer and beyond. My first graders made INCREDIBLE progress this year, and each one truly learned to love reading. I just couldn't bear the thought that it was all going to end!

So I went to the Children's Book Project. They were very helpful, and once I told them my goal of sending 14 books home for each child, they began bringing bags and boxes of books from the back for me to go through. I took the books back to my classroom, sorted them on the students' desks, labeled each pile of books and then hid the piles in a cupboard. On the last day, I told the children that they could take their book totes home (***many cheers!!***)  I excused them one by one, and placed the stack of books I'd selected for them right into their book totes as they walked out the door. I wish I'd taken pictures!

Check the website for more information! Just click on the logo!


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