Bands for Books: Our Way of Giving Back
When I first started The Happy Headband Co., I never planned for this to become such a huge success. My main goal was to cure some summertime boredom, and make enough money to buy some books for my classroom library. I’ve always been passionate about reading so this of course crossed over into my own classroom. I was obsessed with buying books, spending hours scouring Goodwill shelves and garage sales. While I did score some good deals, I was never able to find the newer and “cool” books that my students wanted to read. So I decided that every month I would save up some money and purchase a few books from Scholastic to add to my collection. However, I grew a little impatient and wanted to be able to buy alllll the books at once, but ya girl was trying to do this on a teacher’s salary! Not an easy thing to do!
I began searching for ways to make a little money on the side so I could buy some more books. When I stumbled across an article about using your talents to craft items to sell on Etsy, I decided to put my sewing machine to good use and make some headbands. Initially, I debated whether or not to actually post the headbands on Etsy. I mean it is a little terrifying to put something you created out into the world. I was afraid that people would think I was silly and that nobody would buy anything from me, but with the encouragement of my family, I decided to go for it!
Long story short, my little shop quickly took off! I was ecstatic and went a little crazy on Scholastic and Amazon buying books the first couple of months. Whenever a new box of books arrived to our classroom, the looks of excitement on my students' faces were priceless! I know it sounds cheesy but their joy was one of the reasons why I love my little business so much.
After a few months, I had purchased so many books for my own classroom that I honestly ran out of space. Like, really. I even bought an extra bookshelf and I still had no place to put new books! I wanted to continue to buy books but knew that I really couldn’t keep spending hundreds of dollars a month on my own classroom. It was time to spread the love and expand my mission to help out other classroom teachers!
I started out small, sponsoring a couple of teachers a month. Most of the time, I received nominations for new teachers or for teachers that had endured a tragedy like the hurricanes down south or the wildfires in California. Collaborating with these educators to buy books was (and still is) one of my favorite parts of my business! I’m like a kid in a candy store lol. I love purchasing books that the classroom teacher needs, but I also love being able to select a few books that I think are important for each classroom to have. Many of these books have themes centered around friendship, acceptance, and love and they also include a wide variety of characters from all backgrounds and walks of life, much like the students in our own classrooms. I one hundred percent believe that utilizing books to help students to feel represented is one of the most important things that teachers can do for their students so I love being able to help teachers find excellent books and resources! (Here is a link to many of the books we have purchased in the past that are excellent additions to any classroom library!)
I obviously could not do any of this without all of your amazing support, so thank you so much for continuing to purchase our headbands. I know there are so many different businesses you could spend your money on, so I do not take it lightly that you choose to shop at The Happy Headband Co. You are all the real reason why we are able to help so many teachers and students so thank you, thank you, thank you!
We just reopened our applications for our scholarship program titled “Bands for Books”. You will find the application on our website under the “#BandsforBooks” section. You can nominate a teacher or yourself! Our goal is to help as many teachers as possible so we appreciate any and all nominations! Even sharing our mission helps our cause, so feel free to share the application with others as well.
Thanks for all that you do for our little company. We really do have the best customers! Keep calm and read on :)