Victor Jung is a committed philanthropist from New York City

Tag: Education

Two little girls reading

5 Charities that are Promoting Children’s Literacy

If you’ve ever lent a hand to a charity in the global fight for literacy, you’ll be glad to know that literacy rates have risen in recent years. Literacy programs and charity organizations have a huge role in this!

However, literacy rates are still below par in many underdeveloped and developing countries. The following is a list of charities that are promoting children’s literacy across the globe by working day in and night out.

 

1. Reading is Fundamental

 

Ready is Fundamental is an organization that aims to fight the literacy crisis in the U.S. Committed to spreading the light of literacy among kids, the charity works with schools, book publishers, distributors, community centers, health facilities, and homeless shelters to provide needy children with books and other reading resources. 

They invite you to join hands in creating a completely literate nation and accept donations online as well as by mail or phone. 

 

2. Literacy for Incarcerated Teens

 

This New York-based organization focuses on an important population: youth. It strives to educate teens who are imprisoned and confined by creating libraries in juvenile prisons. This one-of-a-kind non-profit organization aspires to inspire teens to read and learn to become better human beings.

 

3. Everybody Wins!

 

Everybody Wins! is another non-profit charitable organization that utilizes an innovative shared reading experience approach to encourage children to read. they feature an interesting program called ‘Power Lunch’ where an adult mentor and a child pair up for a fun reading session. 

Since its inception in 1995, Everybody Wins! has donated approximately 200,000 books to kids in need and has supported 60,000 children on the fight against illiteracy. You can sign up for mentoring kids or simply donate books and money online to support their cause.

 

4. World Literacy Foundation 

 

The World Literacy Foundation aims to fight the 20% illiteracy rate in the world. It uses the power of research and advocacy to promote literacy in underdeveloped communities across the globe. 

Currently, they are working on eradicating illiteracy in 25 countries, including the U.S., Australia, Africa, and Latin America. To make your contribution, you can volunteer or donate money to the World Literacy Foundation or any one of the three organizations: North America, the UK, and Europe.

 

5. Milk and Bookies

 

Milk and Bookies is a non-profit organization that works to promote literacy and reading among children. Not only this, but it also aims to spread awareness regarding the importance of community work and giving.

This organization has an inspiring Leaders + Readers Program for student volunteers in Los Angeles. In addition to this, it also hosts a program called Book Raisers to motivate children to pick and donate books for other unfortunate kids who can’t afford them. 

You can donate money or books for the needy children or even host your own book drive in your community.

Thanks to the many charities that are promoting children’s literacy, the global literacy rate is improving. Nevertheless, a lot of work still needs to be done. You can do your part by donating money, books, or any reading resources that needy children don’t have access to or can’t afford. 

Educational Nonprofits for Families and Teachers

There are many nonprofit organizations available to help supplement the educational system in the United States. Whether these organizations are geared towards teachers, students, parents, or all of the above, their support often bridges gaps that would otherwise linger between educators, schools, and families. Here are three great nonprofits that are making a real difference in today’s education system.

  1. The Association of American Educators

This organization’s mission is to provide support to the teacher of the country. They do this through programs such as teacher scholarships and grants, liability insurance, member discounts on supplies, tuition discounts, and more. They also advocate on behalf of educators for their rights and for improvements in their careers and classrooms.

This organization seeks to reduce or eliminate strikes and boycotts, which, in the end, negatively affects students more than anyone. They do this by attempting to provide the essentials that educators need (such as supplemental insurance, for example) that they may not be getting from their jobs. By keeping educators happy, peace and balance is maintained within the education system.

  1. Help 4 Kids

This is a small organization located in Florence, South Carolina whose mission is to make sure that underprivileged elementary school students don’t go hungry during weekends. In coordination with local schools and administrators, this organization provides a bag of food to these students in need on Fridays before they go home.

Help 4 Kids is fairly new, having been in operation since 2013. It was inspired by their other chapter Help 4 Kids in Horry County, South Carolina. As the organization continues to be successful, hopes are that the chain will continue to grow and open even more chapters throughout several other communities in the country.

  1. National Parent Teacher Association (PTA)

This 120-year-old organization has accomplished thousands of amazing feats for children. Some of which include creating the National School Lunch Program, pushing for teacher pay raises, rounding up resources for financially-challenged schools so they can keep up with modern education, and so much more. In fact, there is almost nothing that this organization doesn’t do to help parents, teachers, and students. 

The PTA is comprised of over 4 million members. This includes teachers, parents, students, other family members of students, foster parents–basically anyone involved in students lives and education. Their mission statement is “to make every child’s potential a reality by engaging and empowering families and communities to advocate for all children.”

The Bezos Day One Fund: An Overview

Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos recently declared their first philanthropic endeavor. “The Bezos Day One Fund” is expected to tackle two issues: homelessness and early education. Bezos explained that his organization would tackle homelessness by serving as a supplemental source of operational funding for other nonprofits invested in aiding homeless families. His approach to early education would be managed more directly, seeking to establish a network of high quality nonprofit preschools within low-income areas. Bezos has high expectations that his business acumen will lead his charitable efforts just as well, specifically saying he would use the same guiding principles that led Amazon to excel: an obsession with satisfying customers. In this particular case, the “customers” are children.

Because technical jargon in marketing can be troubling, here is an assessment of what Bezos’ child-first schooling would look like. Bezos schools would mimic the unstructured approach used by Montessori schools. While that may sound scary, 4-year-olds are not exactly needing of intense structure.

Alina Adams, author of a “Getting Into NYC Kindergarten,” explained that parents tend to be overwhelmed with choosing a preschool. The market is loaded with dozens of keywords, leading to further confusion regarding which institution would be best for a human recently-freed of diapers.

The bulk of preschooling revolves around keeping children engaged while their parents work. Things like socialization or advancing cognitive development can occur elsewhere. One Head Start program study indicated that preschooling laid the groundwork for better adult earnings and educational gains for mothers. The ideal preschool scenario would be a mixture of daycare and schooling. When looking to low-income families, as Bezos is, the ability to offer flexible hours would be of great benefit.

Another approach the Bezos schools could take with their focus on aiding children is to offer lots of time outdoors. Free play has continued to diminish in public schools since 1955, partly because parents have risen in control over what children get to do and, consequently, lead to the increasing prevalence of depression and anxiety in children. Keeping that play outdoors would help in managing stress, obesity, and other health issues by exposing children to nature.

Bezos’ schools will have the greatest success if they work toward customizing education down to each child, rather than adhere to one-size-fits-all approach most institutions take.

Victor Jung

Teaching Children With Special Needs

Educators that have been trained to teach students with special needs are familiar with the challenges faced in this field, and are dedicated to helping said students receive the education they deserve. Learning disabilities can be any number of complications involving a child’s difficulty to read, write, or speak, and can be a challenge for both student and teacher. With that said, accommodations must be made, and there are considerations that should be brought forth beforehand in order to provide special needs students with the best learning environment possible.

The first consideration every teacher should keep in mind is the aesthetics of their classroom. Children tend to thrive in an engaging environment, yet with limited distractions. Conversely, programs with little structure that allow freedom of expression can be just as beneficial. Utilize colorful labels and checklists to help them stay on top of their tasks, but give them the option to change up how they do their work. Children with special needs often struggle when trying to complete an assignment with distractions around them. If changing where they work helps, allow them to do so.

Your tone of voice when speaking to children with special needs plays a bigger part in their receptiveness than you may have initially thought. Be animated in the way you speak rather than monotone. Varying between loudly speaking in a higher pitch to whispering according to the conversation can teach them to do the same, as well as encourage them to take part in the activity you are asking them to.

Rather than focusing on just teaching verbally, help students with special needs learn more efficiently by including visual and auditory strategies. Children who suffer from dyslexia may excel at lessons dealing with color or light, and those who have speech disorders may be excellent writers. It’s important to expose them to a wide range of categories in order for them to experience the joy of doing a job well done.

Always provide positive feedback and reinforcement. When faced with a difficult task, children with learning disabilities can become intimidated and frustrated. Immediately point out what they’ve done correctly and their accomplishments thus far. Inspiring them to continue is crucial. Structure lessons around certain students according to their disabilities. For example, children with autism often thrive when given strict schedules and are rewarded for completing them, whereas a child with ADHD may perform better when given a task that allows them to restructure their environment.

Take time to sit down with these children and talk, listening to what they have to say to best learn their interests and habits. Whether you’re a teacher, or just a parent of a child with special needs, the strategies mentioned above can be extremely beneficial in both a school setting and at home.

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