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Solid science education is the best inoculation against ignorance.
The Inoculation Project, founded in 2009 by hyperbolic pants explosion, is a group of Kossacks who gather weekly to combat the anti-science push in conservative America by providing direct funding to science and math projects in red state classrooms. Our conduit is, a twelve-year-old organization rated highly by both Charity Navigator and the Better Business Bureau. Here's a little introductory video about DonorsChoose. allows you to make direct contributions to specific, vetted projects in public school classrooms, resulting in tremendous and immediate impacts from small dollar donations. Each week, we focus on funding a single small-dollar project at a time, in a traditionally red state classroom and preferably in a high-poverty district.
Look for us every SUNDAY morning at 10 AM ET/ 7 AM PT.

This Week's Main Project
Project: Simple Machine Legomania

Resources Needed: LEGO set of simple machines
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Greenbriar Elementary School, Indianapolis, IN
Total Cost: $848.82
Still Needed: $149.41 COMPLETED!
Expires: Nov 24, 2012

Teacher's Comments from Ms. P:

My Students: "I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand." Just talking about simple machines is not enough for my students to understand. They need to manipulate materials and figure out concepts in order to really "get it."

My third grade students in our inner-city Indiana school are hard workers. They cooperate with each other as they explore new ideas. My students are inquisitive and great communicators as we work through new concepts. Unfortunately, they do not have many experiences to explore at home. Many of my students come from high poverty areas and do not have the resources to play with items like LEGOs at home.

My Project: LEGO Education has created an amazing Simple Machines kit that enables students to explore gears, pulleys, levers, and wheels and axles. The set allows students to work in groups of two or three kids, which encourages cooperation and communication. Our students will be learning about technological developments throughout history at the time that we learn about simple machines, and I know my students would excel if they had the proper materials.

Simple Machines surround us wherever we go, and I am just anxious to bring those to my students' attention. I can picture them with excitement in their eyes as they have the opportunity to engage in guided creation. Your donation would be just the help my students need. Thank you so much in advance!

Please move on to the bonus project!
We try to focus on the main project until it is completely funded, and then move on to the bonus project. If a project doesn't meet its funding goal by its deadline, it dies and any donations to it are referred to their donors to be moved to another project. For that reason, we don't like to split our sometimes limited resources between two open projects. Of course the choice of project to which you donate (if any!) is entirely yours.
Bonus Project #1
When the main project is finished, let's work on this one.
Project: Time for a Heart to Heart

Resources Needed: 20 sheep hearts, 6 dissecting kits
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Lewis Frasier Middle School, Hinesville, GA
Total Cost: $315.86
Still Needed: $109.86 Completed!
Expires: Jan 28, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Mrs. G:

My Students: Do you remember your first dissection? I do, why not help our students learn about themselves while leaving them with an unforgettable experience.

My students are 7th graders, just learning stepping into puberty. As childhood obesity rates increase it is more important than ever that students know and understand how diet and nutrition affects their cardiovascular, while at the same time leaving a lasting memory and appreciation for science. They are at an age were their habits and decisions can have long term effects. We live in a military town where it is normal for students to have traveled to several different countries and have at least one parent oversees. They are in the midst of finding themselves while at the same time loosing themselves to the cares of this world, family, survival, peer pressure, stress.

My Project: I am asking that you help provide materials that would allow my students to experience their first dissection (mammalian heart) as well as learn about how their own bodies work. Students will work in groups of 4-5 students to complete a lab activity that involves dissecting a sheep heart. We need six dissecting kits and 20 sheep's hearts to dissect as they learn about their own cardiovascular system.

Most teachers, those who dissect, use a frog just so that students have some sort of experience, but my goal is to not only quench their thirst for science, but teach them that they need to love and take care of themselves, for obvious reasons.

So, how will your donation make a difference, we can help inspire a child's love for science and hopefully help them make wise decisions concerning their own help and wellness. Your donation will have a lasting effect.

Please move on to bonus project #2!

Bonus Project #2

Lately, we've had a lot of success and paid for our projects early, leaving no way for latecomers to participate. While that's great, it's also a missed opportunity to help one more teacher. If you arrive and find bonus project #1 finished, please direct your donations to this project. We'll return to it as needed in future diaries.
Project: The Power House

Resources Needed: Power House Kit
School Poverty Level: High
Location: Bogue Sound Elementary School, Newport, NC
Total Cost: $239.95
Still Needed:  $95.00
Expires: Mar 09, 2013

Teacher's Comments from Ms. C:

My Students: Students are embarking on a new curriculum that requires them to take ownership of their role in our learning community by connecting, applying, and analyzing concepts. Energy: Conservation and Transfer has never been included in our curriculum. We have no hands on materials to teach this concept.

Our 5th grade students attend a Title 1 School where 59% of students receive a free or reduced lunch due to a low-socio-economic disadvantaged population.

Over half of our grade level consists of boys. These children are extremely active and have the best behavior when completely engaged. Test book teaching is not an option with these children.

Two classes are inclusion which means a special education specialist pairs with fifth grade teachers to maximize time on task and engagement regardless of ability. The specialist also collaborates with teachers to ensure individual educational goals are being met through instruction.

My Project: In the past, our 5th graders have participated in an annual beach sweep. We will take it one step further by having students plant sea grass on or near our coast to help prevent erosion. While at the beach, students will collect water samples for pollutant analysis and identify existing plants in our ecosystem that are being affected by global warming. With the help of an established coastal foundation, we will utilize programs such as rain gardens, estuaries, etc., by collaborating with these professionals to best meet the needs of our students. Integrating their wealth of knowledge with hands-on experiences for our students by exploring the salt marshes may one day foster the growth of informed citizens who apply their knowledge to implement policies to help the coastal environment thrive.

Students will work with concrete materials in order to fully understand the concepts of energy transfer such as conduction, convection, and radiation and conservation of energy as delineated in the new science standards. A major focus will be on the energy present in the following science units: Ecosystems, Models and Designs, and Land and Water. Students will identify, create, and explain how renewable resources (such as solar, wind, tides, and rain) are sustainable and why they won't run out.

Donations of ANY size can make a BIG difference!


Last week's main project, So Much Humidity!, was completed. High school students in North Carolina will have a sling psychrometer to help them understand the concepts of relative humidity an dew point. Upon completion of her project, Mrs. B. posted the following note:

"I think that I have fallen for The Inoculation Project members for their generosity and commitment to education. Thank you all so very. Much!"
The bonus project last week, Creeps and Flows - Soil Erosion, was also completed. Elementary school students in Nebraska will have stream beds for soil erosin experiments.

The open bonus project in the housekeeping area, Magnifying Glasses for Science Studies, has been rescued with  help from Kossacks. Elementary students in Kentucky will have magnifying glasses to observe various specimens.

You can see the teachers' thank-you notes at the links above. Many thanks to all contributors!

See our list of successfully funded projects. We're up to 243!

More information: main page blog donor FAQ
All math & science projects search results

We are in no way affiliated with, or any of the classroom projects presented for funding.


You are welcome to use The Inoculation Project avatar as your DonorsChoose avatar if you wish. If you need instructions for uploading it to your DonorsChoose profile, you'll find them in this diary.

Donors Choose avatar for Inoculation Project readers to use.

Originally posted to The Inoculation Project on Sun Nov 11, 2012 at 07:00 AM PST.

Also republished by J Town, Dream Menders, SciTech, and SFKossacks.

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