At DonorsChoose you can be a philanthropist for ten bucks (or more). Go to the site and choose from among ...

At DonorsChoose you can be a philanthropist for ten bucks (or more). Go to the site and choose from among thousands of projects submitted by public school teachers — everything from books needed to technology to class trips. Once the project’s been funded, DonorsChoose buys the materials for the teachers, and you get a package of letters and photographs from the students.

I am a primary grade Special Day Class teacher with 16 students. All of my kindergarten, first and second grade students are in need of enrichment for language and speech development. They also display very different learning styles and preferences.

In the past year, I have discovered that Scholastic's "I SPY" series and the spin-off series, "Can You See What I See?" are effective books and materials to enhance the learning of state standards. These beautiful photograph books are perfect vehicles for teaching vocabulary, sorting, colors, rhymes, critical thinking skills, graphing activities, letter and number identification and many more standards.

The children must analyze each photograph carefully to identify objects in the riddles. They must think outside of their basic conceptions of what an item might be. (For example, a "bunny" could merely be a shadow or cloud in that shape.) My students have been able to list items that begin or end with a particular letter, have counted objects and categorized them into various attributes, have seen and heard word patterns and basically have had a ton of FUN!

We would like to continue adding to our library of "I SPY" books. We feel that this is an exciting way to learn all of the basic skills we need in math and language arts. We can reinforce our basic instruction in science and social studies as well, simply by admiring a little photograph!

My class and I would like to add more "I SPY" and "Can You See Wht I See?" books to our collection, with difficulty levels varying from preschool to second grade. Thank you very much for considering our proposal and helping us propel our learning into new areas of exploration! The cost of these "I Spy" Books for the Classroom Library is $193, including shipping and fulfillment.

11/30/06 -- Mike