You may have heard about the hashtag #iwishmyteacherknew that sparked an online movement with teachers across the nation. #iwishmyteacherknew is a fill-in-the-blank activity created by Kyle Schwartz, a third grade teacher in Denver, CO. In an effort to get to know her students a little better, Ms. Schwartz asked her students to write her a note that said “I wish my teacher knew _____________”. Each student answered with something unique, but the answer that moved her to tweet about the activity was this one:
This answer caught our eye since our mission is to provide supplies to kids who need them most. Kyle was kind enough to answer a few questions for us – she is our featured teacher in this Teacher Spotlight blog post (link to full interview) – and we asked her how this assignment transformed the dynamic in her classroom and her students' outlook on their learning. She answered,
“By reading my students responses I have been able to understand my students better. I am able to hear directly from my students what they want me to know. More importantly, it has been a powerful way to build empathy in my classroom. When students share their experiences with each other they can support each other. It turns a group of students into a strong community of learners.”
Yoobi, together with Kids in Need Foundation, hopes to instill that same empathy in those that use our supplies. We want to empower the next generation of kids and, in the process, give everyone the essential tools they need to succeed. Because of the work that Yoobi and the Kids in Need Foundation are doing (we’ve impacted the lives of over 1.5 MILLION kids since our June launch!), kids all across the country have the tools they need to draw, calculate, write and study - even Kyle Schwartz’s classroom received a classroom pack from Yoobi in 2015!
In the introduction to Kyle’s book, she writes:
“It should make headline news that there are so may dedicated students who do not have pencils at home, but it doesn’t. There should be outrage that many American children attend schools that lack the necessary resources to teach them.”
We think Kyle is right, and that’s why we are such huge supporters of I Wish My Teacher Knew. The book gives us an inside look at some of the students notes that spark conversations about the inequity that exists in our schools all across the U.S.
Check it out on their website, and while you’re at it, make sure the next time you buy supplies for school, home or office, you buy Yoobi. For every Yoobi item you purchase, a Yoobi item is donated to a classroom in need, right here in the U.S. One for you, one for me. It’s that simple! Check out our impact in 2015 here and follow our story on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube!