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Mrs. F. from Dorchester MA is requesting Supplies through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Open Your Binders, Open The World!

My 150 students of the French language need 30 binders and 5 boxes of vocabulary-enhanced color crayons to share among them in order to create and organize our song sheets, vocabulary illustrations and dialogue scripts.

  • $148 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Our elementary school launched a French program four years ago, introducing the basics of second language acquisition through games, songs, skits and art projects. The skills and concepts the children acquire enhance, through comparison, their comprehension of basic English grammar as well as their knowledge of world geography and culture. Although our community is considered urban and high-need, we are rich in cultural diversity. Any worthwhile academic language class will necessarily take advantage of that richness, incorporating information about the many and varied heritage languages of the students in the classes themselves. Native speakers of Vietnamese, Spanish, Haitian and Cape Verde Creole, just to name a few, are encouraged to share their own languages and cultures in the context of the French classes, deepening and expanding students' and teachers' knowledge of world languages in general.

Learning French has turned out to be a very popular "special subject" class! As our program grows, documenting, retaining and organizing the shared knowledge base we are building in this unique endeavor is becoming more and more important. If a child in one class teaches her classmates a basic greeting from her culture, for example, it is essential to find a way to share it with as many others as possible. Students have composed a collection of how to count to ten in 26 different world languages, and the list grows longer each year! This year over 250 students are taking French once or twice a week. Sharing a set of 30 binders which all the different classes can both use and contribute to will be a far more economical use of resources.

I'm imagining a set of 30 binders which will travel with me on the French cart as I move from class to class. Each binder will be divided into sections for maps, an illustrated vocabulary dictionary, scripts for plays, lyric sheets for songs and our beloved "counting around the world" collection. The binders will be numbered and assigned to a specific student in each class, with a list of "binder buddies" listed by classroom, grade level and their American and French names to be kept updated in the front of each. This way, students will feel a sense of ownership and responsibility over the shared material. Five or six different "contributors" will create a single binder over the course of the year. For budgetary and creative reasons, I have the children illustrate and color their own vocabulary dictionaries. Crayola brand crayons, with the color words named in English, Spanish and French on each and every crayon have become a valuable vocabulary resource. For this reason, I am including them on my request list, as they add so much beauty and rich language to our efforts.

Your help will make it possible for my students to continue to experience the incredible power of the languages they know as well as the world languages they can learn. Having binders will bring organization and focus to this unique work-in-progress.

Mrs. F.
Grades 3-5
Nearly all students from low‑income households

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2 donors2 donors have given to this project.

This project will reach 150 students.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Wilson Jones(R) Basic Round Ring Binder, 1 Ring, Black • Office Depot Inc. $2.85 30 $85.50
Crayola(R) Standard Crayon Set With Built-In Sharpener, Assorted Colors, Box Of 64 • Office Depot Inc. $2.99 5 $14.95

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