Donors Choose Guide

How to create a Donors Choose project to fund hardware and curriculum for your classroom

DonorsChoose.org is a United States–based nonprofit organization that allows individuals to donate directly to public school classroom projects.  The Donors Choose team will vet all requests, purchase each item, and ship materials directly to verified schools, so donors are confident their donations are going directly to classrooms.

How do I get started?

The first thing you’ll do is create a giving page at donorschoose.org. Then follow the guide in answering a few questions about your project. Take time to thoughtfully describe your project in a way that engages donors and paints a clear picture of your needs.

Project title and summary

Make your project stand out from the crowd. Your project title should be descriptive and grab potential donors’ attention.  For example:

Python Programming with Robots!

Help me introduce my students to Python, the fastest growing programming language in the world!

 

About your students

Tell prospective donors who your students are and why they're special. Projects that focus on students’ strengths, and emphasize their potential tend to be better funded. 

About your project

How will these materials make a difference in your students' learning? Explain the impact that technology can have to make sure every student has an equal shot at a great education. Computer Science is one of the fastest growing fields, with a projected shortfall of one million programmers in the next ten years. We want every student to try CS before they graduate!

Go shopping

The Jumpstart kit and CodeBot come with all the hardware, software licenses, and curriculum that you need! Besides the kit, you may want to think about how you will store it and any accessories you may want, such as batteries, cases for the micro:bits, or additional sensors. All of the above can be found through Amazon.

New to coding?

Donors choose is also a great way to fund an in-person training session with the Firia Labs team. Click here for more information on our professional development package!

To fund training via Donors Choose, select the "Visitor(s)" option in the "go shopping" section.

Any tips for promoting my project?

  • Hit up friends and family first. They can donate before your project has even been approved! 
  • Share on social media, through word of mouth, and include a link in your email signature to ensure the widest reach possible! Facebook is by far the most effective social platform for teacher fundraising. 
  • Use the fundraising templates provided by the site, like a tear-off flyer you can hang up at local shops. 
  • Post on social media at these key moments: when you first submit your project, when you get a donation,  (yes, every time!) when you’re halfway there, if you qualify for a match offer, and when your project is fully-funded.

What happens after funding?

Donors Choose will ship your materials straight to your school. But you’re not finished! Make sure you thank your donors! With your students, compile a list of all the benefits your students have experienced. Encourage your students to be really specific about how this project has helped them.