May 3-7 is Teacher Recognition Week! Teaching is always a difficult task (I should know: I’ve tried!) But this year has been especially challenging. Teachers have struggled to adapt to the ever-changing Covid protocols, learn new technologies and strategies for distance learning – often without notice – and may have had to choose between their health and their work. Many schools are also chronically underfunded, which can result in disinfectant wipes and disposable masks coming straight out of your pocket. There has never been a better time to show some love to the teachers in your life – especially when you are a parent who realized this year how difficult it can be to help a child learn all day!

DonorsChoose is a non-profit organization that enables teachers to raise funds for their classrooms. These can be small or ambitious and cover a wide variety of projects, from classroom basics to technology enrichment to flexible seating arrangements and socio-emotional learning stations.

In the two decades since DonorsChoose began, they have raised $ 1,092,956,333 for schools and funded 1,928,257 projects in 85,630 schools across the United States! Those are some big numbers. However, if you do the math, you can see that most of these projects don’t require a large investment. Many are only hoping for around $ 100 to invest in things like books and supplies that they can continue to use in the future.

While it’s never a bad time to browse DonorsChoose and create a Teachers Day by funding a project, this week is an especially good time to donate. There are several matching campaigns going on, which means your dollar will go much further.

Here’s how you can help! Go to DonorsChoose to see all of the available projects. From there you have countless options for narrowing down the parameters. At the top of the page, you can search for school name or zip code to support a local school. In the left sidebar, you can filter by subject, grade level, or query type – including those specifically for books!

However, if you want to make sure your dollar is stretched as much as possible, you can narrow it down to projects with campaigns to match too! Here are some of the class libraries and other book projects that need funding now. Hopefully some of them are already funded by the time you read this!

Difficult readers need fascinating books!

This Texas high school teacher is looking for a budget to buy exciting books for students who haven’t yet found a book they like. More than three-quarters of the students in their classroom come from low-income households, and many have learning difficulties that have impacted reading.

Ms. Krueger needs $ 154 more to reach her goal – but the Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation is comparing donations, which means she only needed $ 77 in donations to complete the project!

Help our low-income students build a library!

Mr. D is an Ohio teacher looking for liaison books to help organize the even readers donated earlier this year. Almost all of the students in his PreK-2 classrooms come from low-income households. The containers facilitate access to the book and have cushions that serve as seating.

This project still takes $ 238 but the Oak Foundation fits together so it only takes him $ 119 to complete the project!

Bilingual is a superpower!

This grades 3-5 teacher is at a Title I school that has 37 percent of students studying English and she wants to invest in bilingual Spanish / English books to improve reading!

Ms. Werner needs $ 137 more to achieve her goal, but with a suitable campaign, she only needs $ 69 in donations to achieve it!

Graphic novels open doors for reading

In this middle school, almost all of the students come from a low-income home. Ms. Hereth hopes to build a class library with exciting readings that students can choose from to take home a book in the summer and improve their literacy. Visual novels are a great way to inspire kids to read!

Ms. Hereth takes $ 327 to complete her library, but with a campaign from the Oak Foundation to match, that means she needs $ 164 in donations to reach her goal!

This middle school is anti-racist

This rural middle school teacher is hoping to teach Tiffany Jewell’s This Book is Anti-Racist in his classroom in conjunction with Learning for Justice / Teaching Tolerance, including activities to promote empathy. For that he needs a set of books!

So far, there have been no donations for this project, which means he has $ 556 left. However, with a suitable campaign, he only needs $ 278 in donations to complete it!

Celebrate diversity!

This California first grader at a Title I school is hoping to build a library of multicultural books to help students learn about diversity, inclusion, and justice. Help get these life changing books into the hands of the little ones!

Ms. Pérez-Barba still needs $ 650, but with a suitable campaign, he’ll only need half that to complete it!

This is just a small selection of the classrooms looking for help, including many literacy projects. If you want to support your local teachers even if they are not currently running a campaign, DonorsChoose recommends giving them a DonorsChoose gift card that they can use to fund their own inquiries for books on the website.