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  • Esperanza Community Services

  • School Wish List

    Esperanza School Wish List (and how we put these items to good use every day!)

    We hope you enjoyed our video! Below is more information about the items we feature in the video, including why we need them and how we put them to good use them every day, as well as links to purchase the items online! Your support will make a difference for the students of Esperanza School and help them make academic gains in the year ahead.

    All items on this list can be sent directly to:

    Esperanza School
    520 N. Marshfield Ave
    Chicago, IL  60622

    If you would like to donate the cash equivalent of the item, you can do so securely and easily online at Network for Good, or you can send a check to Esperanza at the address above.  Thank you very much for watching and sharing our video and for helping students with developmental disabilities! For Amazon shoppers, please note that Esperanza Community Services participates in Amazon Smile, meaning that a percentage of your purchase on these or any qualifying products will support our work. Remember to select Esperanza Community Services!
    Velcro

    Last year, Esperanza School staff used approximately 1,400 feet of Velcro, aka hook-and-loop adhesive. It’s versatile and perfect for lots of uses, including:

    Creating daily visual schedules so that students know their routine. Being familiar with what activities are happening and when helps students stay on task while reducing uncertainty and anxiety. Velcro allows us to create a schedule that can be changed every day of the week.

    Academic enrichment.  Many lessons that incorporate matching, fill in the blank, or labeling use Velcro.  For example, a teacher might support a student to read a story from a page that has been printed and laminated. The teacher may then ask questions and ask the student to fill in the blank by selecting answers from a number of choices – the blank has the soft, fuzzy half of the Velcro, and each choice has the other side so that students can affix their answer right on the page. Staff can use this approach to build math, spelling and language comprehension skills, and more.

    Communication. Students who are non-verbal or non-vocal can clearly express themselves using a picture –based communication system (called PECS). By selecting from phrases (I Want, I feel) and images (happy, angry, thirsty), students can better express how they are feeling and what they are thinking. This approach can be customized for every student, and dramatically reduces frustration while supporting the growth of independent communication skills.

    Find it here:

    5/8” Velcro  coins on Amazon.com

    3/4” Velcro coins on Amazon.com

    3/4” Strip on Amazom.com

    1” Strip on BuyHookAndLoop.com (sold separately: buy the hook, aka the ‘hard’ side here and the loop, aka the soft side, here.)

     

    Lamination

    Last year we used 20,000 feet of lamination! Lamination helps us protect our materials and resources so they last longer. Lots of things get laminated, including activity sheets, schedules, reward/incentive boards, and communication materials.  We also use lamination (and Velcro – the two go together like peanut butter and jelly) to make books more accessible and engaging for our students.

    By laminating books and incorporating activities that engage the student in a variety of ways, students benefit more from their time with the book. Adaptations might be visual (asking students to match a picture to a corresponding image in the book) or language based (supporting students to summarize a  main idea). Staff will frequently use lamination and Velcro to create custom books, schedules and other tools to help all students build the skills they need!

    Find it here:

    Lamination Rolls at USI-Laminate.com

    Full-page lamination pouches on Amazon.com

     

    Glue Sticks

    Versatile and indispensible, Esperanza School has a thousand and one uses for glue sticks.

    Find them here:

    Glue Sticks on Amazon.com

    We would gladly accept gently used/any brand.

     

    Clothes Pins

    Clothes pins are durable and can be used for a variety of purposes.   Common uses include matching / color identification (for example, matching the clothes pin that has the word blue written on it to a picture that’s blue in color).  Or teachers might support students to build language skills by using pins with letters on them to spell out words, fill in the missing letter of a word, or answer a math equation. Not only do these activities build academics, but the practice of grasping and operating clothes pins helps build fine motor skills.

    We could use the clothespins that you can find on Amazon.com herehere, and also here!

    We would gladly accept gently used/any brand.

     

    Duct Tape

    Brightly colored duct tape is used in classrooms to define areas (individual work space, group areas, and more). It’s also great for color coding activity and material bins, enabling students to identify and select the right materials for the next classroom lesson. This, in turn, helps the student build confidence and independence.

    Find Duct Tape on Amazon here:

    We would gladly accept gently used/any brand.

     

    Binders

    Binders are used to help us organize all of the pages that need organizing – from classroom activities to the goal logs that help us track the progress of every single student. And this organization not is not only efficient, it helps the student build independence.  Binders are always needed, both 1” and 1/2” sizes.

    You can find them on Amazon here and here.

    We would gladly accept gently used/any brand.

     

    Ziploc Bags

    Ziploc bags are a way to keep the small stuff organized, including puzzle pieces, coins, buttons and other sortables,  and all those hundreds and hundreds of laminated words and pictures that you’ve already read about!  We need a variety of sizes from the sandwich-sized bags to gallon sizes for classroom supplies.

    You can find them on Amazon here, here  and here.

     

    Sharpies

    Sharpies are used for color coding and creating manipulatives (see clothes pins!), labeling, and much more!  Handy, versatile, and in high demand.

    You can find them at Amazon

    We would gladly accept gently used/any brand.


    Glitter 

    There’s no way around it: glitter is the best.  That’s why students love it. Its bright colors and reflective properties (its glitteriness!) make it a terrific incentive, and can help add an element of fun and familiarity to new tasks. And who doesn’t love to see their name spelled out in big, shimmering letters?

    You can find it on Amazon:

    Pink

    Blue

    Green

    Red

    Iridescent / Multicolor

    Gold

    Magenta

     

    Fitness Equipment

    Obesity rates for children with disabilities are 38% higher than among their non-disabled peers. Unfortunately, this trend gets worse over time, and the obesity rate among adults with a disability is  58% higher than for adults who are not disabled.  Fitness is important, and access to fitness equipment makes it possible. In addition, fitness activities help students build motor skills and focus their energy in a positive and productive way, reducing outbursts and helping them focus better in the classroom.

    Items we could use include:

    Super Scooters like these at Flaghouse.com

    Jungle Jumparoo (super), like this one found at Target

    Adjustable basketball hoop, like this one at Costway

    Volleyball/tennis/badminton adjustable net system, like this full-sized model at Gophersport.com

    Playground balls like these on Amazon.com

    Balance stones like these on Amazon.com

    We would gladly accept gently used/any brand. There are more fitness items (and other items) below!

     

    Clear, stackable containers

    Clear containers with lids are a cornerstone of classroom organization. Not only are they are a way for teachers to organize materials for lessons and activities, having materials for activities in labeled bins builds our students’ ability to get needed items on their own, building their independence. The extent to which these are put to good use every day can’t be overstated!

    You can find them at Amazon here and here, and at Walmart here.

    We would gladly accept gently used/any brand.

     

    In addition to the items we mentioned in the video, here are other items that we could really use!

    iTunes gift cards so that we can purchase educational and learning apps for our iPads

    Admission to museums in Chicago so that students can develop community integration skills and stay connected to our community

    Gift cards  for Jewel-Osco, Target, Costco,  and other stores so that staff can purchase supplies and incentives

    Pens and pencils, glue, and construction paper

    Loose leaf rings, 20mm (.8”) or 1”

    Melissa and Doug puzzles

    Storage  bins in a variety of sizes, like these varieties at Walmart and these at Amazon

    Health and hygiene kits (items like deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrushes, and nail clippers)

    Music-related items like a boom box, portable CD players, rechargeable batteries and chargers, and headphones.

    Paint brushes, paints and smocks

    Video rockers (video gaming chairs)

    Balance discs

    Incrediblocks

    Small weights (traditional) or SoftGrip therapy weights, 1 – 5LBS.

    Play tunnels and multicolor play cones for obstacle challenges

    Wiggle Cushions that help students stay focused, like these

    Balance Beams

    Bean Bags

    Thank you for reading! Please help us spread the word by sharing EsperanzaCommunity.org/SchoolWishList on Facebook.

    This video was made in-house by the staff and students of Esperanza School using an iPad that was generously donated by Todd and Amy Caputo.