My cousin Melissa is a world-class elementary school teacher who works in a high-needs school. She is innovative and devoted; she wins awards and gets talked about on local TV stations; she makes far too little money and gets far too little support from a district and a state that has a conflicted relationship with its educational system.
I suspect her current Donors Choose campaign is having trouble gaining traction because the idea of a video game console for a classroom sounds like a frivolous luxury when you first hear the idea.
But I'm writing this to say that there is nothing frivolous about Melissa's pedagogy. She's asking for a few hundred dollars to make her classroom a more exciting, enticing place for her students. She is trying to develop a system that reinforces the idea that learning, in addition to being its own reward, yields other kinds of rewards as well
She knows what she's doing. She's only asking for a few hundred dollars. Your $1 or $5 or $10 or $20 would go a long way toward making that possible. And if you're in a position to donate $50, you get heartwarming thank-you letters handwritten by her students.
Our teachers shouldn't have to raise funds to make their classrooms more functional and effective, but they do.