My students need books in English and Spanish so they can read in their native language to make them feel at home and get accustomed to school in the US. We also need CD players to listen to audiobooks.
My seventh-grade students are so eager to learn and want nothing more than to be loved by their classmates and teachers. All of my students are diverse learners and many come from another country or are first generation Americans. We recently had two brothers join our class from Puerto Rico. These students are extremely diverse in terms of academic ability. My students with special needs include students with autism, learning disabilities, ADHD, and social/emotional disabilities. This diversity is great, but as a teacher, it can be a challenge to reach all my students when they are at different levels academically.
My goal is to make sure that all students, regardless of where they are academically, have all the tools they need to be successful and become lifelong learners.
Our wonderful school is in a high poverty area. Ninety percent of our thirteen hundred students receive free breakfast and lunch. They are polite, well-mannered, hard-working students who come from good homes.
Hurricane Maria has had a huge impact with students from the islands being relocated all the way to Chicago. I teach seventh-grade self-contained special education and I recently received two students that were displaced from Puerto Rico. They are brothers and are sweet, caring young men. They are now homeless, but thanks to the help of distant family, they have somewhere to live. They lost everything they knew and loved. They are learning the English language day by day.
To make their transition to the United States easier, they need novels in Spanish, math books and books about the United States Constitution.
My students need books like 365 Days of Wonder: Mr. Browne's Precepts, Chicharito: La historia de Javier Hernandez (Spanish Edition), ¡Gool!: El sueno se inicia...(Spanish Edition), and Porque el fútbol importa (Spanish Edition). They can read in their native language to make them feel at home and get accustomed to school in the United States. Lastly, my students need Spanish Edition workbooks practicing for STAAR. Hopefully, by having these native language books they will be able to keep their minds off of the destruction they have endured and let them learn something new in an exciting way. They need individual CD players to listen to audiobooks and we need a class CD player to allow the students to hear our novels read to them along with a few audiobooks. This grant will allow me to give my displaced students more of what they need to succeed in their new classroom. With the love of their extended family and the support they are getting in our close-knit school community, hopefully, these students will soon be calling Chicago home.
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