My all-time favorite teacher was Mrs. Pfeffer. She was a music instructor and a choral coach, and she directed the high school’s theatrical productions. But she did a lot more than help a room full of off-pitch teens sing in tempo and instruct a 16 year-old “Eliza Doolittle” how to speak with a cockney accent (BTW, that was me, of course.). She taught her students about mutual respect and personal passion. She was strict and hilarious and, once you earned her trust and regard, she treated you like a peer, a friend, and an equal.
Music and theater aren’t often top priorities in the education system. But, lucky for me, the school I attended had deep roots in the arts and was committed to introducing young adults to all things creative.
Of course, that’s not the case at many other schools throughout the United States. I’ve heard from many friends that their district’s art teachers and music teachers and PE teachers are treated like second-class educator because they don’t teach “important” topics covered in the core curriculum. I’ve read stories about teachers who have bought art supplies or instruments or, yes, even extra pencils and notebook paper for their classroom—because their districts just didn’t have the budget for these “extra” items. And this goes for math, English, science, and language teachers too. In fact, I, personally, don’t know one teacher who hasn’t taken money out of her own wallet to help enhance the student experience.
It goes without saying, but teachers are amazing—especially the ones who go above and beyond for the benefit of the young minds they’re helping to shape. To celebrate and thank the teachers who make a difference, thredUP has partnered with AdoptAClassroom.org to launch the "Raise a Hand for Teachers" program. Did you know that, on average, teachers spend $500 of their own money each year to help outfit and equip their classrooms? And 70% of teachers have purchased apparel items—jackets, socks, and shoes—for their students.
Now through August 23, kids can nominate a teacher to win one of three grand prizes from the Raise a Hand for Teachers contest: $2500 for classroom supplies and $500 to spend at thredUP—and 50 runner-up winners will receive $100 to spend at thredUP. (In case you are unfamiliar, thredUP is a one-stop resale site featuring kids’ brands—Janie and Jack, Mini Boden, Zara Kids, Lilly Pulitzer, etc.—at up to 90 percent off retail.) Yes, you need to check it out.
While you’re browsing around online, vote and watch a cute video of kids thanking their teachers HERE. Winners will be announced on Tuesday, Sept. 8.
Good luck, teachers… and, while we’re at it, thank you for all you do. Back-to-school time will be here before you know it, and you deserve a little gratitude... Some extra supply money in your pocket wouldn’t hurt either.
This is a sponsored post. All opinions are our own.