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DONORS CHOOSE: Hamden High Technology Project

A Hamden High School social studies teacher is trying to raise funds for a projector in order to incorporate visuals in his presentations which he says students can relate more to and help increase their grades.

 

Hamden High School Social Studies teacher Salman Hamid strives to find ways to reach his students beyond the traditional lecture and textbooks. Visuals, he has found, can touch a student and increase their interest and ultimately, their grades.

But the technology required to provide visuals in the classroom is both expensive and scarce. School budgets of late have been so tight that things like projectors are luxuries that routinely don't survive the budget process.

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So Hamid is thinking outside the box -- and that thought process let him to donorschose.org, where he can post his request and people will place donations on the project until it is funded.

Hamid's request can be found here: 

http://www.donorschoose.org/project/projecting-the-past-visualizing-the-fut/891832/

He writes:

My Students: Our school is diverse; there is no ethnic majority. We are classified as "moderate poverty" because the community includes children of Yale University professors and parents on EBT. Many of my students this year do not even have access to the Internet at home.

We are a large comprehensive public high school. We use Freshman Teams to help bring the high school experience down to size and keep students engaged in their education. My own students are approximately 40% white, 40% black, 15% Asian and Middle Eastern, and 5% Hispanic.

My Project: Over the course of a decade, I have added numerous materials to my lesson plans and units. What I have come to realize is that none is more important than visuals. Students can read about Columbus or study about the Women's Rights Movement, but visuals make the topic interesting and help students relate or connect. With a projector I can readily pull up an image to enable students to comprehend the topic better. Also it reduces time spent signing up and setting up a projector or utilizing the computer lab. On average, my students' grades have increased 15% since I introduced visuals into my classroom last year.

Ours is a society dominated by visuals whether on billboards or television. A projector helps students focus on the materials and allows for a more interactive experience than the traditional textbook.

My students need visuals, and a projector lets everyone see what there is. Our department of 20 teachers shares a projector on a cart, but that only goes so far.

His project request is for an Epson PowerLite 93+LCD projector that can be purchased at Best Buy for $590.99.

Thomas Alegi November 21, 2012 at 01:13 PM
11/21/2012 Mr. Hamid, Many people like me do not give money to internet groups like donorschose.org and other fundraising groups, for one basic reason their Functional Allocation expenses are somewhat high when you take all of their expenses into account. Therefore, I would rather donation $20.00 dollars to your local projector fundraiser without using the services of donorschose.org, which will insure my entire $20.00 donation would be used for a projector for Hamden students. My name is in the telephone book, I wait to hear from you. Best regards, Thomas Alegi
JM November 21, 2012 at 02:26 PM
you should buy it yourself, write it off as an expense, and rent it to other teachers until it is paid for.
Ted B November 21, 2012 at 02:27 PM
I think using the website gives people a feeling that the project has been vetted. If a teacher were randomly calling residents asking for money, that wouldn't look good. I think this is a great idea and I hope it's successful. Kudos for thinking outside the box and doing something about a problem that is outside of your control.
S. Hamid November 21, 2012 at 03:41 PM
Hi Mr. Alegi, I've pondered this same topic as well. As an alternative, I've spoken to my department chair, who has created a "Social Studies Projector" account. This way anyone who would like to contribute funds for the projector can write a check to Hamden High Social Studies and send it to: Tony DeAngelo Social Studies Department Chair Hamden High School 2040 Dixwell Ave Hamden, CT 06514 Thanks -Salman Hamid
S. Hamid November 21, 2012 at 03:52 PM
JM, It’s true that teachers can write off $250 for classroom expenses, which is less than what I spend every year. I’m reluctant, however, to charge colleagues a rental fee when a school community should promote collaboration rather than profit. Thank you for looking for alternative solutions. -Salman Hamid
JM November 21, 2012 at 05:56 PM
i didn't mean that you should profit, just cover the cost

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