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Advantages of a Digital Wish Fundraiser
Posted by Gordon Woodrow at 03:08:47 PM Wed 08/13/2014

By Kate Reed, High School Student, Vermont

Are you a teacher? Do you want new technologies for your classroom? Then start a Digital Wish fundraiser!

Digital Wish provides a very simple fundraising program for teachers around the country. Teachers provide the products they want on a wishlist, state why they want the products, and then show how much they hope to raise. It is as easy as that. Once they have posted their fundraiser to the website, they just have to keep spreading the word, and they will earn their wish list products in no time!

Debating between creating a Digital Wish fundraiser or one on a different fundraising website?

Digital Wish is very similar to other fundraising websites, such as Kickstarter, gofundme, and Indiegogo. However, if you do not reach your goal on Kickstarter, you get none of the money you raised. One main difference is that donating on Digital Wish is tax deductible for your supporters, while donations on other fundraising sites such as gofundme, are not. If you do not reach your goal on Indiegogo, their fee is 5% more than if you hit your goal. Using Digital Wish, you get the money you raised to spend on classroom technology, even if it is less than your intended goal.


Debating between creating a Digital Wish fundraiser or doing product selling?

Selling Hershey bars, magazines, and cookie dough gives you at most a 50% profit -- and averages from 30-40%. Digital Wish grants you a 92% profit. They are not looking to make money; they are looking to help support classrooms with more technology and raise students up to the rapidly evolving standards of college and the future workforce.

Digital Wish’s fundraising program makes it so much easier for teachers everywhere to raise money for their classrooms because the products are right there on the same site as the fundraiser, making it one-stop shopping. If you want a technology product that Digital Wish isn’t currently offering, simply contact them with the product details and they can usually order it with your fundraised dollars.  If you are a teacher on the Digital Wish website and you find products you want for your classroom, start a fundraiser today! It’s fast, easy and there are lots of great deals and discounts that will stretch your fundraised dollars even further.


Digital Wish Media Contact:
Jennifer Miller, [email protected]
Digital Wish
PO Box 255
Milton, DE 19968

Congratulations July Grant Winners!
Posted by Amanda Stevens at 04:04:15 PM Fri 08/08/2014

Congratulations Grant Winners!  Here are the recipients of our July Grants:

Brynn Pendrak Digital Citizenship and Cyber Safety - July 07/31/2014
Catherine Canter Elementary STEM Skills 07/31/2014
Cheri Lovett Digital Photography 07/31/2014


Digital Wish Media Contact:
Jennifer Miller, [email protected]
Digital Wish
PO Box 255
Milton, DE 19968

HoverCam and Digital Wish Award the Solo5 Document Camera
Posted by Amanda Stevens at 03:18:24 PM Fri 07/18/2014

Congratulations to Tonya Parham of Marion Middle School in Marion, Arkansas! Digital Wish and HoverCam are pleased to present Ms. Parham with a HoverCam Solo5 Document Camera http://www.digitalwish.com/dw/digitalwish/product?id=510DC. Tonya's lesson plan 'Cow Eye Dissection' is a wonderful addition to our lesson plan library.  Her lesson plan is a shining example of how to incorporate the use of technology into the classroom.  Please view the lesson plan at http://www.digitalwish.com/dw/digitalwish/disp_plan?id=7466

Digital Wish Media Contact:
Jennifer Miller, [email protected]
Digital Wish
PO Box 255
Milton, DE 19968

June Grant Recipients Announced
Posted by Amanda Stevens at 08:01:08 PM Thu 07/17/2014

Congratulations!  Thank you for your lesson plan submissions.  Digital Wish is looking forward to another great school year - keep creating those lesson plans cool

Ami Wicks Vocabulary and Humor for High School Students - June 06/30/2014
John Pruett Let's Get Podcasting with Video! Grant BONUS! B10 Camcorder & Podcasting Software 06/30/2014


Digital Wish Media Contact:
Jennifer Miller, [email protected]
Digital Wish
PO Box 255
Milton, DE 19968

May Grant Winners
Posted by Amanda Stevens at 07:55:44 PM Thu 07/17/2014

Congratulations!  Thank you all for your lesson plan submissions.  We hope everyone is enjoying their Summer break (though we're sure you're busy working on plans for the upcoming year) smiley  Here are our end of year grant winners!

Denise DeJuliannie Mobile Devices in the Classroom - May 05/31/2014
Sandy Melillo Vocabulary and Humor for High School Students - May 05/31/2014
Dani Hassforth Let's Get Podcasting! Grant - May 05/31/2014
Jaimie Crane 'Elements of Style' - Composition and Form 05/31/2014
Tonya Parham Document Camera Lesson Plan Ideas - 1 05/31/2014
Vivian Maguire Vocabulary and Humor for High School Students - May 05/31/2014

Visit our Grants Calendar now to view upcoming grant opportunities and deadlines http://www.digitalwish.com/dw/digitalwish/dw_grant_calendar

Digital Wish Media Contact:
Jennifer Miller, [email protected]
Digital Wish
PO Box 255
Milton, DE 19968

Winners Announced for the Epic Yearbook Photo Contest
Posted by Heather Chirtea at 03:57:21 PM Fri 06/13/2014

Manchester, VT - June 13, 2014 - Digital Wish teamed up with Olympus, and Picaboo Yearbooks, to give away three Olympus digital yearbook cameras, as well as an iPad The winning school also received a class set of 30 free yearbooks. There were over 120 entries. Check out all the winners at this link.

Grand Prize: An iPad and an Olympus TOUGH TG-830 Digital Camera

HM- 8929_original-Smaller.jpg


Jaiden, Age 7, from LaCrescenta, CA

"Just after striking out her 3 batter, her teammates rushed her. You can just feel the emotion in this picture. Its a memory that will last forever, caught on film!"

2nd Place:  Free printed yearbooks for all yearbook club members (limit 30) and an Olympus TOUGH TG-830 Digital Camera


Dedication Delivers

Gina Shook, from Carlyle, IL

"Working both before and after school, this group of sophomores and seniors take their sport seriously. These high school cheerleaders have a combined experience of 36 years."


3rd Place:  An Olympus TOUGH TG-830 Digital Camera

Fall Sunset

Jackson, Age 14, from Manchester Center, VT

"Equinox red fire sunset."

Top honorable mention photos also received a Digital Camera Basics book.  Check out all the winners here: http://bit.ly/T8wc4E

About Digital Wish

At Digital Wish, teachers make technology wishes, and donors make those wishes come true with contributions, bringing technology to needy classrooms in all 50 states. Since August 2009, Digital Wish has granted over 30,000 classroom technology wishes through its online network of over 62,000 teachers, and delivered over $13 million in technology products to American classrooms directly impacting over 500,000 students. In research, Digital Wish secured over $1.2 million in stimulus funding to put 1:1 computing into 30 towns, reducing the planning time for technology adoption from 18 months to just 4 weeks, and achieving measured gains in student engagement and 21st century skills.

Digital Wish Media Contact:
Jennifer Miller, [email protected]
Digital Wish
PO Box 255
Milton, DE 19968

Leasing: Same Budget, More Equipment Up-Front
Posted by Jonathan Gallup at 07:52:40 PM Thu 05/22/2014

Trying to figure out how to go 1:1 on scarce budgets? Try Leasing.
Digital Wish put one-to-one computing in 30 schools and experimented with every imaginable funding mechanism.  The biggest strides towards increasing technology came to those schools who adopted a leasing strategy. They were able to get as much as three times the equipment upfront, using their same annual budgets. How did they do it? Let’s break it down into simplest terms.

When a Lease Makes Sense
Technology is becoming an increasingly large budget item and many schools are avoiding huge upfront costs and adopting a leasing strategy. This allows schools to spread out the technology expenditure across the useful life of the equipment, making better use of limited budgets, and refreshing their equipment before it becomes obsolete.

When trying to decide whether to lease, consider how long your technology is expected to last. For non-1:1 schools, desktop devices can often last longer than the lease period and afterwards they can still be handed down to other grade levels. However, if you are working towards a 1:1 environment, remember that the devices will wear out much faster than stationary desktops, which means your equipment will need to be replaced faster.  There is often no hand-me-down value for 1:1 devices, because the equipment is largely worn out by the time the students finish with it. This means once the technology runs its life cycle in the 1:1 program, it will probably need to be disposed of, regardless of whether it still holds value on the fair market.

There are 2 types of leases, a Fair Market Value (FMV) lease and a $1 Buyout lease.

The $1 Buyout Lease
With a $1 Buyout lease you pay for the entire cost of the hardware over the lease term, and you own the equipment at the end of term.

Example: When financing a $300 device, with a 3-year $1 Buyout Lease you’ll spread the cost of that device out over 3 years via an annual or monthly payment schedule.

Now compare a $1 Buyout lease, versus an outright purchase of equipment.  With the lease, you can equip three times as many students with devices in the very first year, and spread the cost out over the 3-year term. This alone, may be enough for your school to tackle a 1:1 initiative now, instead of later.  

Decoding the Fair Market Value (FMV) Lease

With a FMV lease the school doesn't pay for the ownership of the device but only use of the equipment.

Example: That same $300 device will lose approximately $100 of equity each year.  If you are on a 2-year FMV lease you will only have paid about $200 for the device before you send it back. There are not disposal costs on worn out equipment.

A FMV lease can save a lot of money for a 1:1 program.  Since there is probably no hand-me-down value for 1:1 devices, a FMV lease provides an option to get rid of worn out equipment before problems arise.  It also means you can shorten the replacement cycle to 2-3 years, allowing you to replace the devices before they wear out. Then you can implement a Tech Refresh program and get new equipment again.

Add Software, PD and Installation to the Lease
Few schools are aware that you can add software, peripherals, telecom equipment, installation costs, warranties, freight, and even professional development into a single lease together with tablets and computers.  This allows schools to set up a single and predictable annual payment for most of their technology needs to match the school’s annual budget.

Options to Consider
Most terms are negotiable with a lease, so here are some options you will want to consider:

  • Term: Select a 2, 3, or 4-year term.  The longer the term, the lower the annual payment, and the more equipment you can get upfront with your same annual budget.

  • Tech Refresh: Consider the useful life of the equipment and how soon you want to replace it.  At the end of a lease, you can do a Tech Refresh and replace your equipment (often) at the same annual payment. 

  • Payment Plan: Many schools set up a one-time annual payment to simplify accounting, but a lease can be monthly, or any term to match the budget cycle.

  • Deferred Payments – Some lease options allow for the equipment to be delivered to your school well before your new fiscal budget starts, allowing schools to get the equipment ready prior to the next budget cycle.

  • End of Lease Options: At the end of the lease, you can upgrade your equipment, allow students to keep the equipment, or pass it down to lower grade levels. Some leases allow you to decide which equipment to keep and which to send back – so make sure to select options that best match your school’s technology plan.

  • $1 Buyout Option: This is ideal for high schools that lease devices for their 9th graders, and then gift the devices to the students upon graduation.  Not only will this save on disposal costs, but it also reduces breakage rates because students take better care of equipment that they know will be theirs. It’s also a fantastic graduation present!

School Hurdles
Leasing requires schools to step outside of their comfort zone of outright purchasing and consider an alternative financing strategy. We discovered it was common to find someone in the school administration who was against leasing “on principle”, so be prepared to ask hard questions like:

  • Why do you want to own technology that will be obsolete in 3 years?

  • Leasing IT equipment is a common practice in the business world, so why shouldn’t schools take advantage of the same benefits by spreading costs over multiple budget years, and upgrading equipment regularly.

  • Schools borrow money to buy busses and replace roofs, why not 1:1 equipment too?

  • Schools may already be leasing copiers and other large ticket items.  Is that working well for the school and taxpayers?

At the end of the day, it makes no material difference to students and teachers whether a device was leased or purchased.  They will still treat classroom technology as the school’s own. Leasing is not a panacea, but for many schools it can shorten the march towards 1:1 computing by even years.

If you need help sorting out the leasing options, the nonprofit Digital Wish has staff with hard-won expertise in 1:1 computing and can help answer your questions.

Contact us: [email protected] or (866) 344-7758.

Digital Wish Media Contact:
Jennifer Miller, [email protected]
Digital Wish
PO Box 255
Milton, DE 19968

April Grant Winner!
Posted by Amanda Stevens at 07:50:56 PM Thu 05/01/2014



Sister Rita Keller, IHM

Digital Media in the Classroom - April


Be sure to submit your original lesson plans for consideration on future grant awards!  Be sure to check out all of our grants at http://www.digitalwish.com/dw/digitalwish/dw_grant_calendar

Digital Wish Media Contact:
Jennifer Miller, [email protected]
Digital Wish
PO Box 255
Milton, DE 19968

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