10 Creative Ways to Volunteer at Your Children’s Grade School
The schools systems need parent volunteers now more than ever. With reduced resources the schools need help both financially and physically. The Parent-Teacher Associations spend a great deal of time raising money and hosting events within the school but they can not carry the load of each individual teacher who needs help. With the average classroom holding twenty-two students, the teachers often need all the help they can get.
As a parent of five children I found that volunteering inside the school or the classroom is not always an option for me. However, supporting my children and the school system is paramount to the success of my children. Therefore, I had to come up with creative ways that I could support the school without actually being inside the school.
You can truly be an advocate for your school even if you have small children at home or your work doesn’t accommodate your child’s schedule. You have to find out what your child’s school needs and then think out of the box for creative ways to achieve them. Also make sure that you always get the approval of the school principal or the teacher before initiating an action. The following are some of the creative ways that you can support your school:
1. Find out what your teacher needs in the classroom and simply buy them. Some of the items most teacher need are printer paper, tissues, extra school supplies, crayons, markers, printer cartridges, etc.
2. Go to local retailers in your area and ask them to make donations to your school. Many of the larger chains like Books-A-Million and Wal-Mart have donation programs that will provide your school with either materials or money.
3. Offer your professional services to your school for free. If you have excellent writing skills, offer to publish the school newsletter and provide the paper and printing for free. Another way is to donate some of your company’s products to use as incentive gifts for the children.
4. Offer to find grants or write grants for materials and products that your school may need. An example may be to write a grant for free computers from the Bill Gates Foundation.
5. Ask your teacher where they get their worksheets that they provide the children and offer to print them out at home. This is especially great for Kindergarten teachers who use a lot of printouts for the children to color and trace.
6. Share valuable resources with the teachers that may make their jobs a little easier. If you know great websites or have books with cool teaching techniques or printouts for the students, share these with your children’s teachers.
7. Offer to check student papers at home.
8. Collect Box Tops for Education and other labels from your friends, family, and co-workers and donate them to the school.
9. Research all of the businesses in your area and find out if they have a school donation program. Compile a list and present it to the school. Volunteer to act as the conduit for getting the programs set up.
10. Do not forget the special programs within the school such as the art room, the music room, the science or computer lab. Make donations of paint, felt, glitter, printer paper, poster paper, and things of that nature.
Everyone can volunteer if they set their minds to it. Find out the schools needs and then get creative. Think outside of the box and find new, innovative and inexpensive ways to support your school. The school will truly appreciate your support and your children will never forget that you cared.