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Mrs. Hawkins from Newland NC is requesting Books through DonorsChoose, the most trusted classroom funding site for teachers.

Reading in Biology: More than a Textbook Thing!

My students need copies for three different novels which are: Double Helix by Nancy Werlin ; PEEPS by Scott Westerfeld; and Eva by Peter Dickinson.

  • $610 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

I teach Biology and Community College Biology at our local high school. My students are 10th - 12th graders. Our school is the only one in our rural county and many of my students will be the first generation high school graduates in their families. All my students are proud of their county and although some tend toward trouble, most truly want to graduate and be successful, productive members of society.

Do you love to read? I do, and I want my students to also! But, I teach Biology and many think reading in Biology should only entail the textbook. Unfortunately, the textbooks are out of date when they are printed. So, my solution; more Internet and reading novels pertaining to the curriculum. Especially, three I discovered in a previous spring.

Last spring while trying to find books for my then 13 year old, I came across several science related novels for young adults. Double Helix by Nancy Werlin; PEEPS by Scott Westerfeld; and Eva by Peter Dickinson. No, these are not your typical biology books, they are stories about mystery, DNA fingerprinting, memory loss, cloning, parasites and vampires. I purchased 25 of each personally and assigned my Honors Biology class at the time to read Double Helix. I made up a quick study guide (one that needs to be worked on)and we took off. A mother actually asked her son if the book he was reading was for English. He said, "No, this is from Biology, and it is great!" Much to my surprise not only did I receive positive comments from students but also from parents and other teachers. Double Helix is a mystery about the genetic disease Huntington's Chorea and how a high school graduate finds that he was actually the product of a scientists project. PEEPS is the story about vampires and how vampirism is caused by a parasite. The interesting parts for biology are found in the odd chapters. Finally, Eva, is the story of a young girl whose brain/memories are "copied and pasted" into a chimps.

Each book I would like to purchase has backing with in the curriculum; Double Helix - DNA/genetics; PEEPS - parasites; Eva - ethics and ecology. I want to get students reading in all my classes; even my college Biology one, but I need the funding. That is where donors come in. Through your generosity, I will be able to purchase more books and will have the opportunity I have wanted for several years; to increase literacy in biology!

Mrs. Hawkins
Grades 9-12
More than half of students from low‑income households

This project will reach 120 students.

7 donors have given to this project.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Eva Peter Dickinson • Barnes and Noble $6.29 20 $125.80
Double Helix Nancy Werlin • Barnes and Noble $6.29 20 $125.80
Peeps Scott Westerfeld • Barnes and Noble $8.09 20 $161.80

Materials cost


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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


7 Donors


Donations toward project cost


Donations to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


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Project Activity

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