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You Won’t Believe How Much Money These Pleasanton Third Graders Raised for the Rainforest

Thanks to 28 voracious readers and a devotion to the cause, the Rainforest Action Network will be given the substantial donation.

PLEASANTON, Ca: Teacher Adam Randall's third grade class raised $2800 to help save the rainforest.
PLEASANTON, Ca: Teacher Adam Randall's third grade class raised $2800 to help save the rainforest.


By Autumn Johnson

Teaching children to become truly passionate about a meaningful cause is not easy but one elementary school teacher in Pleasanton did just that simply by reading a book. 

"You can make a difference whether you are eight or eighty," Teacher Adam Randall told Patch. [Watch Randall and his students talk about the project here.]

Randall, who teaches third grade at Vintage Hills Elementary in Pleasanton, says his 28 students worked together to raise $2800 to help save the rainforest by asking friends and family to pledge money for each of the books the students read over a three-week period.

It all began last fall.

Randall wrote, via email:

"After reading a story called 'The Dot' about making a positive mark on the world, my class was inspired to make a difference. We had been studying ecosystems around the world and they became very alarmed about the negative impact humans were having in the rainforest so they decided to take action. The class decided to have a 'Rainforest Read-A-Thon' to raise money to donate to a local organization dedicated to saving the rainforest. When they were in class, they were using technology to make newscasts and other videos to spread awareness about what was going on and to encourage conservation. At night they were reading a great deal for their read-a-thon."

The students in Randall's class were excited to talk about the experience of raising money to help save the rainforest.

"It made me feel good to think that we are making a difference even though we are just third graders," said 8-year-old Sydney Seipel.

Speaking about the rainforest, 9-year-old Kayvon Tahmassebi said, "I thought I was doing something right and I felt good about that."

Rika Pinto, 8, says that by participating in the read-a-thon she felt like she was making the right decision by helping someone.

Eight-year-old Ella Thurlow told Patch that she "felt proud and good about doing something cool" for the rainforest.

Randall says the eager students were astonished when he revealed that they had far surpassed their goal and had raised $2800 after only three weeks of the read-a-thon.

"Seeing their faces was amazing," Randall said, smiling.

According to Randall, the money raised will be donated to the Rainforest Action Network, which is headquartered in San Francisco. The students finished out 2013 with more good deeds including making ornaments to sell, with the intention being to donate the proceeds to the UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital.

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