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Dec. 16 2009 - 5:23 pm | 7 views | 2 recommendations | 11 comments

How True/Slant is celebrating the holidays

Image representing DonorsChoose.org as depicte...

Image via CrunchBase

I finally figured out why I like DonorsChoose.org so much.  It’s a cross between an online dating service, craigslist and a charity.   Immediate proof here on our True/Slant Giving Page;  deductive reasoning below.

A couple of days ago True/Slant contributor Michael Salmonowicz wrote about DonorsChoose.org, an online charity connecting individual donors to classrooms in need. Michael made a donation to help a fourth grade class get a subscription to an educational magazine.  He posted part of the note he received from one of the fourth graders:

Did you know a reticulated python is 35 feet long? Did you know that French people sleep longer than people from other countries? These are a few of the interesting facts I learned from reading Time For Kids.”

A couple of months ago, I made a donation to help an all-girl inner city public high school class attend a student performance of “Lincoln, Armstrong to Obama: American History through Jazz.”   Below is the thank-you note I received from the “fun, spunky, outgoing Spanish teacher looking to take her students on a musical journey through history.”

Yay! We did it! Thank you so much to everyone who contributed to funding our class trip. It is quite inspiring to see so many people getting involved to help improve and enrich education for our children.

The students cannot wait to go to the performance. Some students are not too familiar with jazz but love music, so this will be a great opportunity for them to extend their musical repertoire while learning about American history.

Thanks again for all your support! Stay tuned for the pictures (coming after 01/08/10 since that is the date of the performance).

With gratitude,
Ms. P.

donorschoose1On DonorsChoose.org, the teachers post their requests themselves.  You get a sense of their personality and teaching style, and they often include pictures of their students.  That’s the online dating service part.  You get to scroll through the projects, listings from all over the country.  That’s the craigslist part.  Then you can select a project to support to help them reach their goal.  That’s the charity part.

donorschoose2The average public school teacher spends $500 – $700 on classroom supplies out of his or her own pocket, and students still go without critical supplies they need to learn.  We’ve created a True/Slant Giving Page at DonorsChoose.org to help support these low-income classrooms. On our Giving Page you’ll see requests that range from the necessary to the imaginative, including pencil sharpeners, paper, books, art supplies, a rug to sit on for story time and a basketball hoop.   You can select a project, help fund it, and make a real difference to the kids and the teachers.   One day they’re sitting on the cold floor.  The next day they could be sitting on a map-of-the-world rug.

This is how we’re celebrating the holidays at True/Slant.  We all have teachers we remember, that one teacher who made such a strong impression it’s stayed with us forever.  We want other kids to experience that, to have an a-ha moment or two in the classroom, to embrace and enjoy learning.  After all, that’s what we do every day here at True/Slant.  We learn from one another, from our contributors and from our readers (who also contribute through comments).

We ‘d like to invite all of you to join us by visiting our Giving Page  to make a donation or purchasing a Giving Card so your friends and family can participate.  If you’d like to support this effort, please include the following at the end of  your blog posts, emails, in Twitter and Facebook updates, smoke signals and skywriting:

* * True/Slant is encouraging readers to donate at DonorsChoose.org this holiday season.  Read more about it here if you’d like to help a classroom  in need. * *

A bright and happy holiday to all, from all of us at True/Slant.


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  1. collapse expand

    I donated to help out a suburban school in Illinois. Appropriate, no?

  2. collapse expand

    Don’t get me wrong; DonorsChoose.org sounds like a great idea. But when teachers have to go online to beg strangers for cash to pay for activities and materials, what does that say about the state of education funding?

    • collapse expand

      It says that unions need to get out of education and parents need to get back in education. If unions didn’t take part of our teachers pay to get their agendas past in government and parents started caring about what their kids get taught then education would be fine. Of course my kids education is fine because I care about them enough to make sure that, regardless of the ineptitude of the teacher and their union boss’s indifference towards my child’s education, my kids will get what they need to be more than productive in society.

      Also, I think that DonorsChoose.org sounds like good intentions gone astray. I won’t be putting my children’s photos up online. I sure a shell better not find out that a teacher is putting my children’s photos up online. At the same time I have no problem having a place for donations to schools. I don’t intend to encourage this site though. Maybe once they change the photos posting policy I’ll rethink that.

      In response to another comment. See in context »
  3. collapse expand

    You’re right, Claire. Especially when you see teachers asking for bare necessities like paper and ink cartridges. It’s not a tribute to our country’s economic situation or its priorities. It is, though, a testament to dedicated teachers willing to try anything to help their students. And to citizens willing to put their faith and a few of their hard-earned dollars back into the classroom. Plus, the cynic in me totally melted when I got the thank-you note.

  4. collapse expand

    This looks pretty good, but you don’t want to start pulling Whatleys..

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJvbZZWt9g4

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    Spent the first half of my career in television, the second half in digital media. Worked mostly at companies with triangle logos: Fox Television and AOL. Covered the serious and the sensational at A Current Affair. Created online and mobile content, products and communities at AOL. A few startups and now, happily, Chief Product Officer for True/Slant. And let's not forget that "AOL after Dark" project...

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