Literacy Grants

***Project: Our Lindy Hop Circle: Reawakening and Re imagining the Harlem

We funded books and dance lessons to the school media specialist. Her project was to encourage reading
about the Harlem Renaissance by giving the students an experience with jazz dancing. The students were
given swing dance lessons and that went along with their reading about the artistic culture that developed
in Harlem during the Harlem Renaissance.  

*** Read a Book Project:

Students will get to spend $10 each on the book of their choice. This will be guided by their teacher. This
was a simple project but the response was so encouraging that it led us to fund more reading projects.

*** A mini- grant to an English teacher to buy James Baldwin books.  

(The teacher was assembling a class library of James Baldwin’s novels) In a thank you note the teacher
wrote to us; “Through the gift of these books, James Baldwin's spirit has completely enveloped my
classroom. My students show a kind of reverence for this literary giant; they enter the room quickly, take
out their novels and begin reading. I am overwhelmed by what follows: a complete immersion in Baldwin's

One student was so moved by the Baldwin novel he was reading, in an essay the student wrote, "I cannot
describe it... how can anyone write like this?”

*** Project: School Book Club

Project Description: Middle School Book Club, high interest reading group. The students will have a chance
to read books about topics that they can relate to. For students who have trouble reading, it encourages
them to read books on their level. Whenever they are studying an author or topic that they are familiar with,
the students are excited and motivated to read.

We couldn't fund a full grant, so we gave a $250 mini-grant. My letter to the teacher said...

*** This winter we made a grant to a Bronx teacher to get audio books for a book club for
students who had problems reading. It was the kind of project I think Fred would have

The teacher responded with a thank you to the Pelican Foundation…

” Thank you so much. My students will be so excited. When we return from break we will be making our list
for our new class room audio books. My students were just asking if they got their Christmas wish. The
answer is Yes.”

Audio Books for Life

Project_Description; Students will be able to listen to audio books, and discover a love of reading and
listening. Many of the students are struggling readers and or non- readers. Students will be able to listen to
audio books during class time and at home.
Expenses; Audio Books and related materials. Mini Grant Amount: $250

(I thought this was a great way to encourage nonreaders to learn how to read. Once they
experienced what was contained in the books, say The House on Mango Street, perhaps then
they would want to learn to read it for themselves. I wish we could have given more.
Literacy Grants