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Ms. Birchard from New York NY is requesting Books through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Darkness Before Dawn for Special Ed Students

My students need 30 copies of the book "Darkness Before Dawn" by Sharon Draper.

  • $280 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

I am a special education teacher in a New York City public high school. I teach 9th and 10th grade self-contained English and resource room. The disabilities of my students include speech/language impairments, ADHD, dyslexia, Asperger's, severe emotional disturbance, and more. All of my students are bright, motivated people who need that extra push to succeed. I am touched and inspired by their ability to face these tremendous obstacles.

My 9th grade special education English class recently read the book "Tears of a Tiger" by Sharon Draper. My class is currently reading the second book in the Hazelwood High Series called "Forged by Fire." Both "Tears of a Tiger" and "Forged by Fire" deal with raw emotions such as guilt, fear, sadness, and anger. Draper writes from the varying perspectives of the teens involved, making the story very real and engaging. I bought electronic versions of these books and I have been playing the books for my class every day. My students are hooked! They are engrossed in the material and they actually groan when I end the read aloud for the day. These books allow us to have meaningful discussions about serious issues such as drunk driving, peer pressure, teen depression, and more.

I first got the idea for this project when one of my students informed me that he read ahead and finished "Tears of a Tiger." He asked if he could begin reading the second book in the Hazelwood High Series, "Forged by Fire," as his independent reading book. He completed this book on his own within a matter of weeks. He enjoyed both books so much that he asked me if we could read the third book as a class. I was extremely impressed by this student's desire and initiative to read. I realized that if I had the resources I would like to read "Darkness Before Dawn" as our next read aloud book. Unfortunately, I only have 1 copy of the book.

By donating 30 copies of the book "Darkness Before Dawn," you will provide my students with their own copy of the book as well as a class set that I can use next year. I would really like to acknowledge my students' interest in this series by allowing them to keep a copy. My 9th graders have worked very hard this year and have produced high quality work. They truly deserve this opportunity.

Ms. Birchard
Grades 9-12
Nearly all students from low‑income households

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3 donors3 donors have given to this project.

This project will reach 15 students.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Darkness Before Dawn Sharon M. Draper • Barnes and Noble $6.29 30 $188.70

Materials cost


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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


2 Donors


Donations toward project cost


Donations to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


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Project Activity

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