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Page history last edited by Gina Christoffel 1 year, 4 months ago

Grants are an awesome way to get extra materials for your school or to fund a particular project you've been wanting to try. With some schools on extremely tight budgets for art materials, grants can become the main source of your program's funding. At my current school of 400+ students, I have about $300 for art materials. With one or two grants, I can double or triple this amount going toward my classroom. Here's a few helpful hints for those of you who may be new to applying for grants. I've been lucky enough to receive 1 or 2 grants each year for the past 4 years (shout out to Julie Leatherwood for inspiring me to get that "free money" out there!) These are some things that I've found useful:

Plan Ahead: Over the summer, I have the most energy and positive outlook on the year ahead. I am not swamped with work or tired of student discipline problems. Because most grant applications are reoccuring each year, I plan what I'd like to do and use the last year's guidelines and form to fill out. When the time comes, I just edit, cut and paste onto the new grant form and send it off. Piece of cake!

Use Your Resources: You do not have to "reinvent the wheel" and come up with a new lesson.  Look through art magazines (Arts and Activities or School Arts) and use other teacher's lessons you've seen at meetings or conferences. If you see something you like, use it! Tailor it to fit your needs. Also, look for lessons that use the materials you need. One year I really needed to restock all my markers, gel markers, sharpies, and crayons, so I found a paper mask lesson that fit and was able to get classroom amounts.

Make it Trendy: Right now, the buzz is all about  "green", character building, 21st century skills, multicultural, healthy lifestyles, etc. I've found if you tailor a lesson to touch on one of these hot topics, it tends to get chosen. 

Right Amount: You can ask for whatever amount fits your project, but I have found that smaller projects get funded more often. I think the organizations like to spread the wealth around and like to give to many schools. Almost all of my projects have been about $300.

Think Longevity: Although it definetly helps to stock up on crayons, markers, and paper, grants can be a great way to build up on items that can be used again and again. Looms, paper making screens, mask molds, brayers, etc. These tend to be the more expensive items anyway, so once you have them, you are all set!

A Big Thanks When you do receive a grant, make sure you follow all the guidelines for the completion package. Take lots of pictures of students working, completed projects, displays, etc. Make a lot of thankyou notes with the students handwriting and their own words. The people who donate love to see what their money went toward and you may possibly get another grant in the future from it.

Here are three grants that come around every year. Donor's Choose is ongoing.

Teacher Art Grants     Enrichment Fund     Donor's Choose


Hope this information helps! Feel free to email me if you have other questions, and good luck!

Jennifer Dufort- Sedalia Elementary




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