Schoola Blog

School Fundraising Tips & Success Stories from Schoola

Month: March 2017

Perfect Your Spring Break Packing List

Between shuttling the kids to sports practice and preparing school lunches, it can be hard to plan spring break travel, let alone worry about what to pack when the day of departure arrives! To help you keep all your ducks in a row, we compiled spring break packing lists for a few popular destinations.

Beach Vacation Packing List

family spring break at the beach

If your family is bound for the sand and sun, here are essentials you’ll want to tuck in your luggage:

  • Swimsuits and towels for ocean-side afternoons
  • Sunhats and sunscreen to keep everyone safe from UV rays
  • Sand toys for keeping the kids entertained
  • Sandals or water shoes to protect sensitive feet
  • Beach coverups, like sundresses for girls and a tee or tank for boys
  • Water bottles and snacks to keep everyone happy and healthy
  • A reusable bag for collecting shells

Big-City-Bound Packing List

spring break vacation in the city

Heading off to an urban adventure? Here’s what to bring:

  • Good walking shoes for a day of pounding the pavement
  • A comfortable outfit for afternoons of exploring; shorts and a t-shirt are a fantastic choice for everyone
  • A nice outfit for going to the theater or special evenings out; we recommend a dress for girls and a button-down for boys
  • A backpack or large purse for carrying your camera, snacks, water bottles and subway tickets
  • A journal for each kid so they can record what they saw and learned each day

Camping Adventure Packing List

family spring break camping

For a foray into the woods, packing smart will get you far. Make sure you remember:

  • Outdoor-ready clothes from brands like REI, Patagonia, The North Face or Columbia
  • A hoodie or flannel to fend off any evening chill
  • Travel games or cards to play around the lantern light
  • A first aid kit to care for any unexpected bumps and bruises
  • Bug spray and sunscreen to thwart mosquitoes and protect skin
  • Camp kitchen equipment like a stove, pots, dishes, a utility knife, utensils, and biodegradable soap
  • Sleeping essentials like a tent, sleeping bag, and sleeping mats, plus earplugs for sensitive sleepers
  • A flashlight and s’mores ingredients to make every evening bright

Mountain Jaunt Packing List

spring break vacation in the mountains

If you’re getting in one last winter hurrah with a trip to the mountains, you’ll need to pack your bags for bundling up! Be sure to bring:

  • A warm coat to fend off cold weather
  • Slippers for keeping toes toasty in the cabin
  • A turtleneck and woolly socks for staying warm
  • Snow gear like snow pants, a scarf, gloves or mittens, and a knit hat
  • Lotion and lip balm to prevent dry skin and lips
  • Hot cocoa for warming up after a day of playing in the snow

Have any family vacation packing tips? Share them below!

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Meet 3 Schoola Fundraising Stars

Just what kind of impact does Schoola make? We talked to three schools close to our hometown—and heart—to find out!

Fundraising for Music Education at Gregory Gardens Elementary School

Schoola School Fundraising

After reading about Schoola online, Gregory Gardens Elementary School mom Deborah, decided to give Schoola a test drive. She sent in a bag of her son Dylan’s outgrown clothes and was delighted when her donation quickly raised $250 for his school. Buoyed by this success, Deborah began organizing school-wide clothing drives, and now, five drives later,  Pleasant Hill, CA-based Gregory Gardens has raised over $15,000 to keep their arts and music programs alive and thriving!

Using the money they’ve raised with Schoola, Gregory Gardens, which serves 375 bright, young minds aged 5-11, purchased a spotlight and microphones for their theater program, and many instruments, from violins, to clarinets, to glockenspiels.

“Schoola is unique in that it enables us to raise funds without asking parents for money,” says Deborah, adding, “as a bonus, [it] encourages families to clean their closets! Parents love it.”

Gregory Gardens looks forward to using additional funds raised with Schoola for musical instrument repair and purchases, fun field trips, investing in sheet music, and giving all children a chance to both learn an instrument and participate in their beloved school play.

To help Gregory Garden’s young creatives thrive, shop here.

Making Art & Outdoor Education Possible at Lawton Alternative School

Schoola School Fundraising

Housed in a classic art-deco building covered by San Francisco’s majestic blanket of fog, Lawton Alternative School is a K-8 public school that aims to educate “the whole student.” Focused on art, music, theater, PE, and outdoor education in addition to the traditional array of classes, Lawton Alternative does a wonderful job of expanding the minds of its 600 students.

This extended educational programming doesn’t come for free, however, and state funds don’t cover all of Lawton’s expenses. So, when Schoola contacted PTA Vice President Gretchen three years ago, she readily agreed to give Schoola a go—and the results have been fantastic!

Today, Lawton Alternative has raised more than $5,800 with Schoola. They have used funds to pay their Education Outside program, which helps children connect to nature and science through hands-on learning in school gardens, and look forward to using future earnings to support teacher development, improve classrooms and buy plenty of books and equipment that will make lessons more fulfilling.

Help Lawton reach their goals by shopping to support them!

Providing Enrichment Activities at Jefferson Elementary School

Schoola School Fundraising

Standing proud on the streets of San Leandro, CA, Jefferson Elementary is a Title 1 school full of 630 cheerful students and a staff of amazing teachers dedicated to education and the arts.

The school began fundraising with Schoola when Jasmine, one of the school’s moms, began working in the Schoola warehouse. Smitten with Schoola the minute she learned about it, Jasmine brought Schoola to Jefferson and now, 289 bags of clothing later, the school has become one of our stars.

With $4,600 raised (and counting!), Jefferson put its fundraising proceeds to good use, supporting everything from assemblies and movie nights, to music classes and more. Plus, parents feel fantastic about the Schoola fundraising model since Schoola helps them support their children’s education without having to spend extra money, which make a big difference to many Jefferson families.

Jefferson has great plans for its future funds, like putting on a healthy-habit-promoting Obstacle-a-thon and organizing a Bingo for Books event. Help them make all these activities a success by shopping their Schoola page!

 

Have a Schoola success story? Share it below!

 

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5 Reasons Why Kids Need Music Education

School music programs nationwide are disappearing, suffering at the hands of state-by-state budget cuts. Though it can be tempting to dismiss this as no big deal, the impact of eliminating music programs at schools is worse than you may imagine. March being Music in Our Schools Month (#MIOSM), we’re sharing a list of five reasons why music education is incredibly important—and why, in turn, we here at Schoola donate 40% of proceeds to schools to keep programs like music, art, and PE alive!

1. Music education helps kids do better in school.schoola

Numerous studies show music education improves academic performance. A 2007 study published in Nature Neuroscience reports that “students in high-quality school music education programs score higher on standardized tests…regardless of the socioeconomic level of community.”
To get a perfected picture of what this means, let’s look at some other studies.  One study found that students who had a quality music education score an average of 63 points higher on verbal and 44 points higher on math on their SATS. Another discovered that, with good music programs, elementary school students did 22% better in English and 20% better in math across all geographic regions. Even basic music programs sparked improved academic achievement in comparison with schools that provided no music education at all.

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