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Ms. Schaumleffel from Upland CA is requesting Books through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Building Identity, Empathy and Community Through Literature

Help me give my students access to 16 relevant, engaging and important novels!

  • $2,401 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

My Students

My 7th grade students are at the tender years of transitioning to young adulthood. They are eager to explore the world around them but still are too young to do so autonomously. However, books offer them the ability to see the world, develop opinions and create expectations for the people they are becoming.

A love for reading is an underestimated gift.

Within books, people find empathy, goals, dreams, ideas, comfort... the list is endless. A good book does not offer an escape from our daily world; rather, books expand our world. As a teacher, I want to expand my students' worlds as much as possible.

In my classroom, I try to give my students the opportunity to see themselves and others in books that represent a wide variety of people and lifestyles. I believe in the power of representation to validate our experiences and to teach us that the world exists beyond our little bubbles. Within my classroom, there is a wide range of cultures, languages, heritages and beliefs which books can help us learn to share unproductive, empathetic ways.

My Project

As an English teacher, one of my main goals is help kids have positive and productive relationships with books. It is my firm belief that books make us more empathetic and curious people. However, we won't love to read unless we love the books we read and have access to lots of them; likewise, we won't be productive readers until we learn to talk about and engage with what we read. As a way to get our students excited about books, my colleagues and I do "book tasting" during which our classrooms are decked out in a theme and students "taste" books. Based on their interested, we group students into literature circles. Thus, we create groups of students reading and talking books that intrigued them. However, decorating our classroom is not enough to create lifelong readers.

We needs books in which students see themselves and their experiences.

We need students to connect with books. We also needs books with characters and stories that are worlds away from their lives in which they can expand their worldview. The list of books that I created is made up of recently written, relevant and diverse books. Access to current literature is so important when becoming a reader; I want my students to see that novels are created in response to real life. I want my students to learn how to talk about themselves, others, current events that they care about and feel connected to. Only then, can I create classes of students equipped with the reading skills to be empathetic, critical, observant and thoughtful readers and people.

Ms. Schaumleffel
Grades 6-8
More than a third of students from low‑income households

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Expand the "Where your donation goes" section below to see exactly what Ms. Schaumleffel is requesting.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Dry • Amazon Business $12.91 12 $154.92
The Girl Who Drank the Moon (Winner of the 2017 Newbery Medal) • Amazon Business $12.71 12 $152.52
Miss E. • Amazon Business $12.71 12 $152.52
The Stars Beneath Our Feet • Amazon Business $11.89 12 $142.68
Hello, Universe • Amazon Business $11.89 12 $142.68
Nowhere Boy • Amazon Business $11.72 12 $140.64
Amal Unbound • Amazon Business $11.56 12 $138.72
Where the Watermelons Grow • Amazon Business $11.00 12 $132.00
Beyond the Bright Sea • Amazon Business $8.99 12 $107.88
The Only Road • Amazon Business $8.99 12 $107.88
Ghost Boys • Amazon Business $8.49 12 $101.88
Lucky Broken Girl • Amazon Business $8.16 12 $97.92
Hidden Figures Young Readers' Edition • Amazon Business $7.83 12 $93.96
Same Sun Here • Amazon Business $6.54 12 $78.48
A Boy Called Bat • Amazon Business $6.02 12 $72.24

Materials cost


Vendor shipping charges


State sales tax


3rd party payment processing fee


Fulfillment labor & materials


Total project cost


Suggested donation to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


Total project goal


How we calculate what's needed

Total project goal


21 Donors


Donations toward project cost


Donations to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


match offer


Match offer toward project cost


Match offer 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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Project Activity

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