I’m sure that all of us have at least one teacher who we remember with fondness. I have several, but the one who left the most lasting impression on me was my first grade teacher back in the Virgin Islands, Mrs. Kean. She was an older woman, and she had the softest, kindest face and the ability to make even a student like me, who had never been to public school before that point, feel at ease. But she was also a strict disciplinarian, and we knew better than to cross her. She had a knack for keeping a bunch of 6 year olds in line without much effort.
She was also the first teacher to see potential in me, and when I moved from her class to second grade, she told my new teacher to keep an eye on me. That second grade teacher eventually wound up pushing me through to third grade in the middle of that school year, setting me up to graduate from high school at 16 and college at 20, excelling all the way through. I wish that my adult self could go back and thank her for being so awesome.
I can’t, so I’ll have to settle for thanking the teachers in my daughter’s life who have made these last few years — leukemia and all — not just bearable, but positively wonderful. While I can thank them with words or even small gifts of thanks, Walmart is giving all of us the opportunity to do it on a much grander scale with their Teachers Rock Facebook app.
Between now and September 20, you can nominate your favorite teacher to the Wall of Fame on the app. Every day, one of those nominees will be inducted and receive a $500 gift card to Walmart. When you consider that teachers spend an average of $40 a month of their own money a year to purchase items for their classroom, you’ll see how this could be quite a blessing for the teacher in your life.
But if you’d like to give directly, there’s a way to do that too, via DonorsChoose.org. Public school teachers from all over the nation use the website to post classroom project requests for everything from pencils for poetry writing to microscope slides for a biology class. You can browse through all the requests and give any amount you choose — as little as $1 — to the ones that inspire you. When the goal amount is reached, Donors Choose delivers the materials to the school.
In addition, the Teacher’s Rock benefit concert, featuring huge musical stars like Josh Groban, fun. and Dierks Bentley, will air on CBS tomorrow. Two hundred teachers from the Los Angeles, CA area were invited to attend the concert and proceeds from all ticket sales will go to non-profit organizations: DonorsChoose.org, Feeding America and Teach for America. Plus, if you tweet with the #teachersrock hashtag, you might see your tweet during the CBS broadcast! The best tweets will be chosen to appear.
So take the time to nominate your favorite teacher(s), and give to some projects at DonorsChoose.org. Two simple ways to help the teachers who take our children’s education in their hands, and to thank the ones who did the same for us.
Disclosure: I am a member of the Walmart Moms program. I was provided with compensation for sharing the Teachers Rock program with you. Participation is voluntary and, as usual, all opinions are my own.