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Mr. Cunningham from Chicago IL is requesting Technology through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Helping Students Living with Autism Speak

My students need 2 iPods for the ability to communicate their thoughts through more complex means than picture exchange.

  • $772 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

My Students

Imagine having to navigate through life completely silenced; never being able to tell someone your opinion or communicate your needs. Many of my students living with Autism face this experience every day of their lives.

I have a class of thirteen students living with Autism ranging the spectrum from low to high functioning.

My classroom ranges from second through fifth graders. Regardless of how they are classified or why, each and all of my students are so smart and full of life. My school is a public school in Illinois without proper funding for the technology needed for students living with Autism to thrive. Most of my students cannot communicate more than two words at a time, but two students are completely non-verbal. Both have been diagnosed with Autism and severe cognitive impairment due to being non-verbal, but not being able to talk does not mean one is not incredibly intelligent! I wish I had the resources to help them communicate what they are thinking and show the world the intelligence they show me in class every day and thrive.

My Project

The iPod Touch will be used in my classroom with the text-to-speech capabilities. Along with learning academics, children living with Autism must be taught how to navigate through the world in which people without Autism have created. For them to succeed, they must learn how to speak. By giving my students the power of a voice, they can easily be college-bound! For the two students who are non-verbal, I will set up a "discussion time" when the students will learn how to use the text-to-speech application on the iPod Touch to communicate their thoughts and opinions with me. Later, I will transition it into a social skills activity for students in my class to begin speaking with each other to become more comfortable with using the device.

This technology will provide my students with the power of a voice; something many of us take for granted.

With this technology my students can have a voice to potentially change the world and make it a better place for people living with Autism.

Mr. Cunningham
Grades 3-5
Nearly all students from low‑income households

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38 donors38 donors have given to this project.

This project will reach 5 students.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Apple® iPod touch® 32GB* MP3 Player (4th Generation - Latest Model) - Black • Best Buy $299.99 2 $599.98

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


35 Donors


Donations toward project cost


Donations to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


Excluded support for DonorsChoose


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Project Activity

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