Literary Activism

Friday Fund Days: Drop Some Dollars & Help Some Classrooms

Christine Hoxmeier

Staff Writer

Christine Hoxmeier can usually be found hard at work in her beloved home of Austin with a cup of coffee in one hand and a taco in the other. She spends her free time reading, writing, and dreaming of a teleportation device so she can visit her friends spread across the globe on a daily basis. If it were possible to live inside one Disneyland attraction for the rest of her life, Christine would cheat and choose to split her time between It's A Small World and The Enchanted Tiki Room. She prefers to communicate in CAPSLOCK and with gifs. Twitter: @aramblingfancy

With the world being a difficult place for those of any marginalized background, one of the things those of us who are looking to do something can do is donate to those in need. Thousands of teachers each year ask for a little help with seeking supplies for their classrooms via Donors Choose; organizations that do work with at-risk communities like prison populations seek spare change to advocate for and bring literacy to those groups; and non-profits that provide necessary resources to empower women and people of color are always hoping for a few bucks to make their vital work possible.

Enter: Friday Fund Days.

Book Riot readers have helped fund hundreds of classrooms over the last few years, and we’ll help bring funds to hundreds more. Each Friday, we’ll highlight two classrooms or other literacy-focused, important projects in hopes you’ll help them reach their goals to bring literature, advocacy, and education to others.

Even if you can’t spare money, any social sharing you can offer to the projects each week absolutely helps: you never know who’ll find it and have the means by which to make the project’s fundraising goals reached. More, you’ll bring awareness to the unmet needs in communities around the world, as well as right in your own back yard.

When all else feels hard or hopeless, remember that you can and do make a difference.

This Week’s Projects

Seeing Ourselves in What We Are Reading, Batesburg, SC ($665)

Help me give my students diverse book choices for lit circles throughout the year as well as for a unit on identity using Trevor Noah’s book Born a Crime as the anchor text. Thank you for your support!

My Students

I teach awesome students. Some are strong readers, but many are not—mostly because they have trouble relating to the characters and storylines in most of the classic texts our school has to offer. This can make reading more of a chore than a joy sometimes. I want them to love reading.

Diverse books allow students to see themselves represented in literature while promoting empathy and understanding of others.

My students are culturally diverse, but we do not have enough books written by or for people of color. Reading diverse books promotes a deeper understanding of the world by sharing different points of view and new ways of seeing issues. And my students deserve books they can relate to.

My Project

In a culture where we are bombarded with other people trying to define us, how do we make decisions for ourselves? What shapes our identity? What are the responsibilities of the individual in regard to issues of social justice? These are essential questions.

I am teaching units next year on identity & social justice with my students; and I wish to use Born a Crime, a book about a biracial boy growing up under apartheid who finds his pathway to adulthood, as my anchor text.

The other texts in my cart will add more diversity to the unit giving my students lit circle choices as we further explore these questions.

Great Graphic Novels, Columbus, OH ($362)

Help me give my students graphics novels to increase and inspire their love for reading.

My Students

Eager to learn and share their knowledge, my students love to share their voices through writing. My students come from different low-income areas of Columbus. These students all receive a free lunch. My exuberant readers are vigorously reading all of the graphic novels I have. Their love for reading is contagious and inspiring.

My Project

My students need more graphic novels to enhance their vocabulary and increase their love of reading.

My students came into my classroom this year excited to see that I have graphic novels in my classroom library.

During my Open House, students were already making a list of the graphic novels they intended to read. Now that school has started, my students are reading at a tremendous rate.

My graphic novels have been flying off the shelves. My exuberant readers are vigorously reading all of the graphic novels I have. Their love for reading is contagious and inspiring.

Reading is an essential skill for all students, and I promote a love for reading in my classroom. Graphic novels can dramatically help improve reading development for my students struggling with language acquisition, including special needs students, as the illustrations provide contextual clues to the meaning of the written narrative. They can provide students with clues to an emotional context that they might miss when reading a traditional text.

English Language Learners will be more motivated by graphic novels and will more readily acquire new vocabulary and increase English proficiency. This project will improve our classroom library by increasing the number of graphic novels for students to read in school and take home.

Whether you can donate a dollar, donate fifty dollars, or donate a share on social media, you make a difference!