NEWBERRY — Gallman Elementary School’s physical education teacher, Dell Lever, is working to bring new and updated sports equipment to his students.
Lever, who is in his third year teaching in Newberry County, is utilizing DonorsChoose to accomplish this.
“I started a DonorsChoose page, something I recently just heard about, this is where teachers go online, they make this page and they basically write an essay about their school, their kids and what kind of equipment they are needing,” Lever said. “You make a cart with different equipment you purchased, you just have not purchased it yet. People, out of the goodness of their hearts, can donate towards that cost to help get that equipment.”
Lever said he needs all kind of new equipment, but the page he created on DonorsChoose is for basketball equipment, which would include a set of basketballs that are age appropriate and in different sizes.
“I teach Pre-K to fifth grade. I try to teach skills based off of age level, skill level and so forth,” he said.
Lever said he needs to raise roughly $1,000 for all of the equipment he would like to have, but specifically for the basketball equipment he needs to raise around $390. Lever created the DonorsChoose page on Oct. 10 and before he went to bed $75 had already been donated, something he greatly appreciated.
“For the next seven days, if anybody chooses to donate, when they go to check out put in the code LIFTOFF, the DonorsChoose website, since it is my first project, will double every donation that we get, so until Monday, October 17,” he said.
Once the basketball equipment project is funded completely, Lever says he will receive the materials, but the project must be funded by Feb. 9, 2017. He added that the quicker the project is funded, the quicker he will get the equipment.
“When I start teaching basketball is usually November, so ideally I would like to go ahead and get it funded and then I will come back to basketball once we come back from break,” Lever said. “All students love basketball, so that is one of the biggest units I have.”
After the project is funded, Lever will write thank you notes and take pictures to send to all of the donors. He will also have his students draw pictures and write thank you notes to all of the donors as well.
Once this project his funded he will be able to start other ones. Lever said he would like to get a good set of footballs, soccer balls and things of that nature. One of the biggest things he would like to have is equipment for motor skill development, things like gymnastic mats so the students can learn flips and rolls.
“I would like to really build the equipment up so I can offer many different things. When they come in and say ‘coach, what are we doing today?’ with better equipment and more equipment, my responses and plans could be endless, could go so many different directions,” Lever said.
This year Lever is doing something different when it comes to grades three through five, which is teaching the concepts of a sport. For example, he is teaching throwing with a football, and he would like to roll that into a football unit and teach the concepts of football to his students.
“Then come spring time with baseball, I will take the throwing and catching concepts and hit on them again with it, and see how far along we have come from fall to spring,” he said.
When it comes to Pre-K through second grade Lever is focusing on the skills and techniques. For example, last week he worked with them on catching a self tossed object, this week it has been partner toss and next week through the end of October they are going to work on target games, like tossing the ball to different targets.
“With more equipment, better equipment, we could have more game like settings, more opportunities to practice such skills,” Lever said.
In the past Lever has done fundraisers like Jump Rope for Heart and Hoops for Heart where they raised money for the American Heart Association and the school received a percentage. However, he has never done a P.E. fundraiser where all the profit goes to the P.E. Department.
“It is something new. I am looking forward to it and I hope it works out,” he said.
If you are interested in donating to Lever’s current project you can find his DonorsChoose page by clicking on the following link www.donorschoose.org/project/help-us-make-a-basket-in-pe/2275445/.
Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on twitter @TheNBOnews.