7 Grant Writing Tips Every SLP Needs to Know!

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Let’s be real for a minute…We all know how incredibly expensive it can be to create amazing activities, lessons, etc. for our students and/or clients.  Sure, maybe you grab some great supplies at the Target DOLLAR spot, Dollar Tree {my FAV!}, and 5 Below here and there.  But when you actually add it all up after a few months, your eyes might pop out of your head!  Markers, paint, laminating sheets, velcro, and so on…all may be NECESSARY purchases in order to have FUNctional sessions, but WHOA…$$$$.  I’m here to bring you my tips for writing a Grant to hopefully help fund those aforementioned materials (plus some!).

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These may not be the “end all” tips that can guarantee your grant is funded, however; I have been lucky and fortunate enough to have received THREE grants in the last 2 years so I’m hoping this post will help!  As you may already know, I do a TON of cooking and hands-on activities with my preschool students.  Each week I do a push-in group lesson in EACH preschool class.  Prior to receiving grants, I still did my cooking lessons but oh boy was it A LOT of dough out of my own pocket.  Let me just say, I still purchase many items on my own but the grant funding has certainly helped.
File Sep 25, 12 07 34 AM Where in the world can YOU get funding from?!  Luckily, there are several options!  First and foremost, check with your district or township to see if they have a GRANT COMMITTEE set up to provide educators with funds.  I am extremely grateful that my district has their very own grant committee.  They have been gracious enough to provide me with a “Cooking Grant” (to use with my preschoolers!) for the past 2 years.  Three years ago I had my very first project funded by the ABSOLUTELY AMAZING and FABULOUS Donorschoose.org.  If you are not familiar with this organization then you need to check it our immediately. Not only can you write your own project but you can contribute to your fellow educators and SLPs who are doing nothing more than trying to get funding to better serve and provide for their students.    Lastly, take a look at teacherscount.org.  It’s a non-profit organization that provides resources to education,  supply programs, lessons, and MORE to better the education of our STUDENTS!  Doesn’t get much better, right?!

Grant Writing 101: My TOP TIPS for getting funded!

TIP #1: What do you need MOST?!
Think about what will be the most valuable to you for the entire school year.  Here are some questions to ask yourself:  Do you do weekly crafts with your students? Then maybe art supplies like paint, paint brushes, dot markers, construction paper, etc. are the perfect grant for you!   Are you constantly printing visuals, schedules, and PECS?  If you answered “yes”, then a printer AND colored ink are what you NEED!  Do you find yourself laminating all of those amazing TpT activities you have purchased?  Then guess what, time to write yourself a grant for a personal laminator and a ton of laminating sheets!  Obviously these are just a few of the ideas you could write a grant for…possibilities are endless!

TIP #2:  Be PRACTICAL!
Of course it would be the ideal world if we could get EVERYTHING we WANT & NEED for our speech rooms and to use with our students but that’s just not always (or EVER) the case!  So go ahead and make yourself a list prioritizing what you NEED for your students AND will ultimately save you from a majority of out of pocket expenses.

TIP #3:  Writing your Objective
You need to stress the importance this grant will directly have on your students. Will this funding give your students the opportunity to use AAC to communicate with their peers and in the community?  Will this grant provide opportunities for your little learners to be exposed to healthy recipes/food that they may not get outside of the classroom?

TIP #4:  Goals & Objectives
We know how important those IEP goals/objectives are when working with our SPED students.  It’s a great idea to mention them when writing up your grant!  List the ways this funding can DIRECTLY target some of the goals/objectives your students are working on during the school year.

TIP #5:  How are you going to use this grant?!
This may seem simple but I promise it’s important! No matter who the person or people are reviewing your grant, they will want to hear DETAILS.  Here is an example from one of the grants I have written (and got approved!)….”I will use seasonal recipes/materials to target speech and language goals/objectives in my students’ IEPs.  Preparing/buying the food/materials, prepping all materials, developing/displaying visuals (vocabulary cards, recipes with each step listed, comprehension question cards) is how each weekly lesson will be organized and implemented.”

TIP #6:  Write an Itemized List
Most grant committees will require you to list each and every item you are requesting for your grant.  You may need to go as far as listing the company/website, prices, item number, tax, etc. for each item.  No matter how big or small the total amount you are requesting is, people want to see the breakdown of what this money is for.

TIP #7:  You got FUNDED, now what?!
How will you evaluate and explain the success of your grant? Remember that fellow colleagues, parents, and/or supporters of education in general are backing your grant.  Providing them with success stories, pictures, or even an invitation to come observe your lessons to see HOW the grant is being put to use are ALL great ways to say THANK YOU!  Seriously, a success story is the best possible “thank you” for a grant!

 

5 Day Hands on Activity Challenge

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Do you enjoy doing hands-on activities with your students, clients, or even your own children?  Are you constantly searching for NEW and exciting ideas for these types of activities?  Would you like to win a $50 Amazon gift card and two incredible TpT resources for all your crafting and cooking

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