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  • $483 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Mr. W.
Grades 3-5
Nearly all students from low‑income households
  • 6 donors
  • $0 still needed

Bring a World of Voices Into an Inner-City Classroom!

My students need 31 multicultural books at their appropriate reading level, from African-American folktales to Asian-American biographies, women inventors to Latina heroines and tales of contemporary American Indian lives.

For many of my students, their world is no larger than the high-rise apartment most of them live in and our school building, which is directly across the street. I teach 4th grade at an inner-city school in a very high-need community.

This is my second year teaching through the Teach for America program and I'm extremely excited to start up a Reading Workshop in my classroom. Though my students are staggeringly intelligent and jumping to learn, many are still behind grade level--especially in terms of reading. Reading Workshop is the perfect way to get them hooked into reading and to help them build slowly but surely up to their age-appropriate reading level. But...we have one huge problem: reading workshop requires a lot of books, and our classroom has only a few. What's worse, the ones we do have are inadequate in several ways. Not only are many at way too high of a reading level for my students, but also most are outdated and culturally exclusive.

My students desperately need books at their reading level that will expose them to the amazing diversity of experiences in this world. They need to see that life is not limited to what they experience in their struggling neighborhood, that wonderful opportunities exist for them all over this country and the world. The books I've selected will help them see this--and, in the process, inspire a love of reading that will push them up to the reading levels where they need to be.

With your help, my students will begin to see faces and hear voices they never have before, they will be awed by the variety of rich experiences in the world, and they will learn to love reading--not just because it is so rewarding, but also because they will see that they can be great at it too!

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Ellington Was Not a Street Ntozake Shange, Kadir Nelson (Illustrator), Kadir A. Nelson (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $16.19 1 $16.19
John Henry Julius Lester, Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $7.19 1 $7.19
Harvesting Hope: The Story of Cesar Chavez Kathleen Krull, Yuyi Morales (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $15.30 1 $15.30
Dia's Story Cloth: The Hmong People's Journey of Freedom Dia Cha, Chue Cha (Illustrator), Nhia Thao Cha (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $7.15 1 $7.15
My Name Is Mar a Isabel Alma Flor Ada, Ana M. Cerro, K. D. Thompson (Illustrator), K. Dyble Thompson (Illustrator), Kathryn Dyble Thompson (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $4.49 1 $4.49
Borreguita and the Coyote: A Tale from Ayutla, Mexico Verna Aardema, Petra Mathers (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.29 1 $6.29
Amigos del otro lado/Friends from the Other Side Gloria E. Anzaldua, Harriet Rohmer (Editor), David Schecter (Editor) • Barnes and Noble $7.15 1 $7.15
Hairs Pelitos Sandra Cisneros, Terry Ybanez (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.29 1 $6.29
Ruby Lu, Brave and True Lenore Look, Anne Wilsdorf (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $3.59 8 $28.72
All for the Better: A Story of El Barrio Nicholasa Mohr, Rudy Gutierrez (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.52 1 $6.52
Nobody Owns the Sky: The Story of Brave Bessie Coleman Reeve Lindbergh, Pamela Paparone (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $5.39 1 $5.39
Shipwreck Saturday (Little Bill Series) Bill Cosby, Varnette P. Honeywood (Illustrator), Varnette Hon Eywood (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $3.59 1 $3.59
Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins Eric A. Kimmel, Mayer (Illustrator), Trina Schart Hyman (Illustrator), Barbara Mayer (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.25 6 $37.50
Tar Beach Faith Ringgold, Faith Riggold • Barnes and Noble $6.29 1 $6.29
Smoky Night Eve Bunting, David Diaz, David Diaz (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.30 6 $37.80
Malcolm X: A Fire Burning Brightly Walter Dean Myers, Leonard Jenkins (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.29 1 $6.29
Malcolm X Arnold Adoff, Rudy Gutierrez (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $4.49 1 $4.49
Satch & Me (Baseball Card Adventures Series) Dan Gutman • Barnes and Noble $12.79 1 $12.79
Thurgood Marshall Christine Taylor-Butler, Cecilia Minden-Cupp, Susan Low Block • Barnes and Noble $4.45 1 $4.45
Stories Huey Tells Ann Cameron, Roberta Smith, Roberta Smith (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $4.49 1 $4.49
Stories Julian Tells Ann Cameron, Ann Strugnell (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $4.49 1 $4.49
Shortcut Donald Crews, Donald Crews (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.29 1 $6.29
Justin and the Best Biscuits in the World Mildred Pitts Walter, Catherine Stock (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $4.95 1 $4.95
Grandfather's Journey Allen Say, Allen Say (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $15.25 1 $15.25
Molly's Pilgrim Barbara Cohen, Daniel Duffy (Illustrator), Daniel Mark Duffy (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $3.59 1 $3.59
Mrs. Katz and Tush Patricia Polacco, Patricia Polacco (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.29 1 $6.29
Meet Danitra Brown Nikki Grimes, Niki Grimes, Floyd Cooper (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.29 1 $6.29
Fire Race: A Karuk Coyote Tale of How Fire Came to the People Jonathan London, Chronicle Books, Lanny Pinola • Barnes and Noble $6.25 1 $6.25
Too Many Tamales Gary Soto, Ed Martinez (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $7.19 6 $43.14
Happy Birthday, Martin Luther King Jean Marzollo, J. Brian Pinkney (Illustrator), Brian J. Pinkney (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $6.29 1 $6.29
Sounder William H. Armstrong, James Barkley (Illustrator) • Barnes and Noble $5.39 1 $5.39

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How we calculate what's needed

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6 Donors


Donations toward project cost


Donations to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


Excluded support for DonorsChoose


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Our team works hard to negotiate the best pricing and selections available.

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6 donors6 donors have given to this project.

This project will reach 30 students.

Project Activity

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