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Mrs. Wallace from Saint Louis MO is requesting Classroom Basics through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

The Write Stuff: Pencils for Teen ELLs

My students need pencils and pencil sharpeners to complete daily in-class writing.

  • $284 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

My Students

Imagine how you would feel if you suddenly had to move to a different country, one in which everyone speaks a language you barely know. Now imagine that you have moved there before you even learned to read or write. Many of my students are in this situation every day.

My students come to this country for a variety of reasons and from many different places, but all of them share a desire to succeed.

They struggle to understand what their teachers are saying and attempt to learn from materials written for native English speakers. They speak Arabic, Bosnian, French, Spanish, Kunama, Lao, Farsi, Nepali, Vietnamese, and Pashto (among others) fluently but cannot read the textbooks because they are written in English. As their ESOL and Sheltered ELA teacher, I do what I can to inspire them to persevere, despite the frustration of being unable to read or express themselves the way they can in their native language or languages.

My Project

For the past few years, I have ended the school year by creating projects in which I request Black Warrior pencils and pencil sharpeners. They always arrive at the beginning of the following year and I get to greet the kids on the first day of school with fancy new pencils and new sharpeners. I extol the virtues of the Black Warrior pencil: The Best Pencils in the World, and describe them in hushed tones reserved for the most sacred of things. My students really get into it and in the days to come, frequently come up to whisper, "Can I have a Black Warrior pencil?"

My students often do not come to school with the basic supplies they need to learn.

This is just not something they have and I refuse to let something so small as a pencil stop them from learning each day.

When I tell them that people who don't know them bought these pencils and sharpeners for them to help them learn, I see the change in them almost immediately. They are gentle with the new sharpeners and more respectful of each other while using them. They are more thoughtful about what they write and I see them sitting and looking up, deep in thought, their Black Warrior pencil poised to add another brilliant thought to their paper.

Daily writing practice is essential for my students. They must practice their language every day in order to progress and grow their English proficiency. These pencils make them want to write, rather than dread writing. They truly are magical.

Mrs. Wallace
Grades 6-8
Nearly all students from low‑income households

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1 donor1 donor has given to this project.

This project will reach 62 students.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Paper Mate Mirado Black Warrior #2 Pencil, Black, 12/pk (2254) • Quill.com $2.80 45 $126.00
Quill Brand ClassMate Electric Pencil Sharpener Heavy-Duty, Blue • Quill.com $40.79 2 $81.58

Materials cost

$207.58

Vendor shipping charges

FREE

State sales tax

$0.00

3rd party payment processing fee

$3.11

Fulfillment labor & materials

$30.00

Total project cost

$240.69

Suggested donation to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms

$42.47

Total project goal

$283.16

How we calculate what's needed

Total project goal

$283.16

1 Donor

-$283.16

Donations toward project cost

-$240.69

Donations to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms

-$42.47

Still needed View calculationHide calculation

$0.00

Our team works hard to negotiate the best pricing and selections available.

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Project Activity

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