Classes 4 Classes, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to teach children the power of kindness and compassion through their ability to create positive change for others. The platform provided by our website actively engages students in learning a social curriculum through the exchange of gifts with other K-8 classrooms, which fulfill a need or educational objective. These gifts are crowd-funded by visitors and donors to our site. The gift is given to the teacher and the students in the receiving classroom only once the project goal is reached, and the receiving classroom has started their own project to “pay it 4ward” to another classroom.
How it works
A K-8 classroom sponsors a class in need by providing that classroom with a gift through the following steps or scenarios:
1. Sign up: Sign up as a Giving Class (sponsoring a gift for another class) or a Receiving Class (the recipient of a gift). Remember that the Giving Class drives the project until the money for the gift is raised at which point the Receiving Class becomes the Giving Class for a different Receiving Class.
2. Fill out your profile: Teachers create their C4C profiles by answering a few simple questions
3. Get matched with your class: Based on their selection, teachers are either automatically matched with their partner class through the site or given the opportunity to search for their partner class. In the event that partner class is not available at the time of your registration, you will be contacted by C4C when a class becomes available.
4. Determine your gift: Once you are matched with your class, you will begin conversation via email with the other teacher to determine what to give or what you would like to receive. Teachers are encouraged to involve their classroom in brainstorming about the gift, but ultimately it is the decision of the Giving Class teacher.
5. Post your project: Once the gift has been determined, the Giving Class Teacher can create their project page by entering the gift, a short description of the gift, and the amount of the gift to their profile.
6. Update your page: Teachers are encouraged to involve your students in filling out the sections of the Project Page such as the Book Nook, Kindness Corner and other sections. Use our Curriculum Ideas and Get Involved sections for inspiration. The more you participate the more recognition your project gets on our social media sites, which will drive donors to your page!
7. Watch your gift get funded: The gift or project is crowd-funded (donated to in increments as small as a dollar) by visitors to our site. Classrooms can sponsor events and fundraisers to raise money for their project as the giving or receiving class, but are under no obligation to do so.
8. Pay it 4ward: Once a gift is completely funded, the receiving class is given their gift only once they’ve started a project of their own by sponsoring a gift for another class in need. This ensures that our mission continues and that every classroom “pays it 4ward” and that our mission continues.
Brainstorming about the gift:
Giving Classes can sign up with a gift in mind or not, but you are encouraged to discuss this process with your class and the Receiving Class, and brainstorm gift ideas that the students in your class have personally learned from and enjoyed.
Gifts can include school supplies, technology, or even field trips or guest speakers. We suggest keeping your gift in the range of $500 to $750, and include any additional tax, shipping, or other fees that could impact the price of the gift or project.
Also, be sure to upload a picture of or related to what you are giving so that visitors and donors can visualize your project.
Classes 4 Classes, Inc. will add 15% to every project to cover overhead and transaction fees.
Involving your students:
The C4C platform is built to involve the students as much as possible, even though the process itself is managed by the teachers. Our Curriculum Ideas and Get Involved pages will actively engage you and your students and integrate real life examples of paying it 4ward into your curriculum and the work you do around your project.
LETTER FROM OUR FOUNDER
Dear Caring Classes, Sponsors & Donors:
After experiencing a tragedy immeasurable in its scope, I’ve come to realize that there are no words of explanation, and there never will be. Instead, we need to make a choice for ourselves, our students, our nation, our world. If we choose love, kindness, empathy, compassion and hope, which I so believe we should, then we need to make a point to teach these things.
There is a lack of hands on experiences that teach social curriculum in K-8 classes. As teachers we know we’re responsible for teaching children to care and to be kind, compassionate, and empathetic; yet, there’s little that provides that opportunity. Classes 4 Classes teaches our youngest students to care for one another by allowing them to actively engage in social curriculum through projects that K-8 classes sponsor for other K-8 classes.
Through our website, students create and engage in a project intended to help another class and generate a caring climate. We provide a place to track the project and showcase all of the amazing work students create in conjunction with that project; including letters, poems, short pieces, illustrations, book reviews, etc. Classes 4 Classes is unique in that it allows students to choose who they wish to help and how. The beauty is that EVERY class can give, because students and teachers are not the ones financially responsible for funding their projects.
When we use active experience to show our students the impact of helping someone else, it ultimately changes our social climate. Our hope is that every K-8 student in the United States will have the opportunity to be a part of Classes 4 Classes.
When we teach kindness, compassion, caring, love and empathy, then there is no room for hate. If every student is able to experience this, just imagine what our world will be like.
Kaitlin M. Roig-DeBellis
Executive Director & Founder
Classes 4 Classes, Inc.