Hello! For those of you who don't know me already, my name is Chip Moreland and I am an English Education Volunteer with the United States Peace Corps in Moldova (a small ex-soviet block country in Eastern Europe). Moldova is a beautiful country, but it is also the poorest country in Europe. I live in a small village called ?tef?ne?ti, in the Rayon of Prodene?ti. I work very hard here co-teaching English with two lovely Moldovan teachers.
Even though Moldova has a strong heritage of education, there are several factors which cause a huge disconnect between time spent in the classroom and the information mastered by the students. While the reasons for this disconnect are many, and the majority may be out of my control, there are a few things in my classroom that I can do to make a difference. One of these things is giving my students better access to learning materials. Everything I do here must be sustainable. Meaning, the ideas that I come up with must be able to continue after my two years of service (mainly my partners have to be able to afford the time/money to continue it). Printing here is very expensive on a teacher's salary and the English books rarely contain a sufficient grammar explanation or activities to challenge the students. Usually the tests are given out of the back of the book, where students from year’s prior have written the answers or students find the answers online the night before. As you can see, this means there is no real threat of failure, and they never really have to actually study the information. The result is that the students are never pushed to master the information. However, in order to print tests (with different variants) we must ask the students to throw us some money, so this doesn’t happen often.
The money I am asking for will go toward an Epson L200 printer. This printer has been created for the developing world and it contains an ink reservoir that can be refilled by bottles of ink. By doing this the price to print per page will go from $.04/page to $.0021/pg. We could print roughly 20 pages for the cost of printing one, and it would be of much higher quality. This could change a lot in my classroom. Not only will I be able to print tests with multiple variants, but I will also be able to make study guides, give more meaningful grammar charts/explanations, more challenging grammar exercises, and vocabulary pictures oh the vocabulary pictures. Currently I spend a solid 5-7+ hours per week hand drawing and coloring pictures to use in class to help explain vocabulary. I could reduce this to about 20 min per week, freeing up more time for planning or maybe actually sleeping. Not only would this type of printer make these materials economically within grasp, but the freeing up of time would give my partners incentive to make more materials as well.
I plan to leave the printer for my teachers to use in the future. And for those of you who know me, you know I value the environment so I will not be printing things willy nilly, only important materials and things which I can make last for years.
If enough of my friends and family donate just $5-15 we can make this happen. I am asking for $250 for the printer itself and the additional $50 would go towards ink and paper that according to my calculations would last for 2-4 years+.
If you made it this far, thank you very much for reading this and (hopefully) for your contribution.