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Just for Teachers

Get Ready for Giving Tuesday

Tomorrow is Giving Tuesday, a global celebration of giving back! As a teacher, you can harness the momentum of this special day to benefit your students, classroom, and community. Guide your students through gratitude activities Harvard professor Francesca Gino studies what she calls the “gratitude effect”. Giving or receiving a thank-you, she says, contributes to higher levels of self-worth and triggers positive behaviors towards others. You can incorporate DonorsChoose.org thank-you notes into a classroom lesson on gratitude (and letter writing). In the words of Meredith, a DonorsChoose.org teacher, “Thank you notes are one of my favorite parts about the DonorsChoose process.
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Three New Funding Opportunities from Infosys Foundation USA

We’re thrilled to share three new funding opportunities sponsored by Infosys Foundation USA. There couldn’t be a better time for students to explore computer programming, engineering, and innovation. The Foundation launched the ‪#‎InfyMakers Awards in September and recently added a special category for youth age 9 through 18. Students or student teams can submit their Maker projects at www.InfyMakers.com. Winning students can also nominate their school to receive a $10,000 Makerspace grant. But time is of the essence because the entry deadline for the winter awards cycle is February 1. To make it easier for teachers to coach their students, we launched a Double Your Impact campaign
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Robots, Polymers, and DNA Are Just 3 Lesson Plans from the Future

For 140 classrooms, the future begins right about…now! Back in October, our partners at Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany challenged teachers in Greater St. Louis  to post their most creative science projects through the Smarter, Together program. These are teachers who want science class to leave a memorable mark on their students’ lives, and they rose to the opportunity. Last week, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany donated $125,000 to fund 140 of the most inspiring projects. Here are three projects that we hope encourage other teachers to tackle tough questions with their students. Robo-Engineering Mrs. Gragert will teach her middle school students how to construct
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How to Make the Most of Valentine’s Day (No Matter How You Feel About It)

Valentine’s Day: Some love it. Some hate it. But for dedicated teachers, it’s just another excuse to spread a little joy. Here’s an easy way to share camaraderie, gratitude, and—yes—a touch of love this week. We see DonorsChoose.org teachers giving each other high-fives constantly, and it gets us every time: This Valentine’s Day, take the opportunity to shout-out a fellow teacher. Whether they’re a trusted colleague or a stranger whose DonorsChoose.org project inspired you, this is the week to let them know they’ve made a difference. Take it one step farther. Do you have a friend whose donation to your DonorsChoose.org project meant a lot?
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7 Moments Every DonorsChoose.org Teacher Should Seize

You know that finding supporters is one of the keys to a successful DonorsChoose.org project. But once you’ve told your friends and family about your classroom request, what else can you do? Here are seven important moments you can use to your advantage as a DonorsChoose.org teacher… and the shareable images to help you do it! Click on any of the images to download. These graphics are perfect for social media and can also be added to emails, flyers, newsletters—anywhere you want to promote your project. While there’s no substitute for a personal ask or thank-you, we hope these images will make a valuable addition
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On your mark… get set… get moving with ESPN’s Access to Sports match offer!

Last year, 388 teachers helped bring sports equipment, movement, and amazing experiences to their students with the help of ESPN’s half-off match offer. This year’s goal? Provide students with even more access to sports and sports equipment—starting today! ESPN is committed to giving all students access to the benefits of sports: physical and mental health, friendships, social skills, and the ability to work as a team. This follows in the footsteps of the work done by ESPN in conjunction with College Football Playoff’s Extra Yard for Teachers campaign. Check out these all-star teachers who gave us four reasons why the ESPN
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6 Ways to Push Your Project Across the Finish Line

You go above-and-beyond for your students, so posting a DonorsChoose.org project is a natural next step. But how do you make sure your request receives donations? Here are six teacher-tested techniques to advocate for your students, rally supporters, and reach your goal. Email friends and family. When reaching out for support, there’s no substitute for a personalized request. Email has proven to be the #1 tool teachers use to get their DonorsChoose.org projects fully funded. Explain to those you know why your request is important to you and your students, and don’t forget to include the link to your project. (Get more tips about using email
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Teachers: Choose Your Own (Crowdfunding) Adventure

You go above and beyond for your students. That’s why you landed here in the first place. However, getting others excited about your classroom projects can be a challenge, whether you’re time-strapped and nervous or enthusiastic and looking to branch out. Fortunately, there are so many ways to share your DonorsChoose.org projects that you can advocate for your students in a way that works for you. Which tools are a good fit? Answer the flowchart questions, then scroll down to get your strategies.  Graphics: Lynn Overmyer; Text: Emilia MurphyDidn’t find the perfect fit? Pick and choose from the ideas above to
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The DonorsChoose.org Teacher’s Guide to Social Media

As part of the Teacher Success team here, I’m always looking for new ways to help teachers spread the word about their projects. Recently, I sat down with Eric Vilas-Boas, DonorsChoose.org’s own social media guru, to get some tips about how teachers can use social media to their advantage. Teachers—like everyone else—use social media to connect with each other, but we’ve seen some of our most successful teachers use it to fundraise as well. What do you think makes social media an effective way for teachers to share their DonorsChoose.org projects? One thing that I like about Twitter and Facebook—why
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Optimize Your Outreach: 4 Tips for Project Success

You’re busy. (Okay, okay. For a teacher, that’s probably the understatement of the century.) Regardless, you took the precious time to post a DonorsChoose.org project for your students and now you want to make sure everyone knows how much this matters to you. Whether you fundraise through email, social media, word-of-mouth, or have your own personal success strategy, these four tips will help you make the most of your efforts.   Build on Momentum Most people like to join a party when it’s already hoppin’. When you receive a donation, harness that positive energy by sharing the news and reminding supporters that your project still needs their help. Donors Love Deals Teachers
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