Top 10 fundraising ideas for primary school teachers

Ben Hodgkiss

Ben Hodgkiss works with Brainwaves, a children’s rewards company that continually tries to find new ways to engage children, and promote positive behaviour in the classroom. Children can be encouraged for their participation in activities such as fundraising through rewards including personalised stickers, stampers and certificates.

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There are many different ways for schools to get involved with fundraising, whether it be for charity or to raise money for a school requirement, such as a new classroom or equipment. In order to promote positive behaviour, primary schools can encourage pupils to fundraise as a worthwhile group activity that can help others or benefit their own learning.

Fundraising is a good way of bringing people together for a common cause, encouraging group participation and teamwork. The important thing is that the activity engages the minds and hearts of the participants and encourages them to give money to the fund. Here are 10 ideas for fundraising activities that should do just that:

1. Bring and Buy Sale

A bring-and-buy sale is a great way to raise funds as well as teaching children to donate their unwanted toys and clothes to a good cause. Children and parents can bring any unwanted items to the school and sell them to raise money. This can be held in the school hall or on the playground - anywhere where there is plenty of space to set up stalls. Encouraging parents and friends of the school to promote the event will help more people to attend and more items to be sold.

2. Cakes and Biscuits Shop

Children often love to bake, and this is another good idea for raising money. The cakes can be sold to other children at lunch time or break times, or this can be a larger operation with lots of stalls set up for an after-school cake sale. This could be a regular event where a different class supply the cakes each week/month, making sure the whole school is included in the fundraising efforts.

3. Sponsored Read

Holding a sponsored read is a fun way of introducing small children to read for pleasure. Children can choose the books or teachers could set out a list of books which could increase in difficulty each time, and they get sponsored for every book they finish or every chapter of a longer book. The school library could create a chart to track the amount of money raised in an effort to inspire the children to carry on reading.

4. Sponsored Walk

Walking is an excellent sponsored event because it is an activity that everyone can enjoy. It encourages parents and children to get out in the fresh air to be active together, but it can also be carried out individually. Participants can also combine walking with other activities such as walking their dogs, listening to music or singing together. It’s also a great activity to promote as part of a healthy lifestyle.

5. Arts Exhibition

Schools can display the artworks of children in a marquee on the playing field, and parents can come and buy the work, with all proceeds going to the fund. This is also an opportunity for the children to act as waiters/waitresses and hand out drinks and finger food at a small fee all going to the fund. The arts can be from different categories, such as painting, drawing, chalk pictures, poetry, needlework, pottery and other crafts, and will encourage children to get creative in their efforts.

6. Sports Day

Turn sports day into a fundraising event, with the audience buying tickets to watch the event. Schools could charge more for tokens towards a BBQ or the like. This is a fun and healthy day out for the family, with children's races and parents' races, along with other fun ideas such as egg and spoon race and sack race for little children, and athletics events for older children.

7. Quiz Night

The quiz-night organisers prepare questions based around school subjects, or questions can even be taken from suitable quiz-based board games. Children could also organise their own questions to test each other. Children can study their favourite subjects, increase their knowledge and play as a team, and the winners can earn rewards, including stickers or certificates.

8. Sponsored Knit

Children can learn to knit as well as getting sponsored for every line of knitting they finish. A parent or relative who can knit could come in to teach the children, who can then use their new-found skills to raise money for the school, the knitting could be taken home as well as done in their free time at school. Finished products could then be sold / exhibited within the school to add to the fund. It’s great to encourage pupils to try their hand at news skills, such as this, providing them with a sense of achievement.

9. Christmas/Occasion Cards

Children can create their own cards for Christmas, or whatever seasonal occasion is closest to the event - even generic birthday cards could be a good seller. The cards can then be sold to raise money, either in the classroom at the end of the day to parents and carers or as a whole school collective effort in the hall or playground. Again, this is an opportunity for the pupils to practice their creative flair, as well as think about the messages they’d like to accompany.

10. Non-Uniform Day

These days could be themed fitting with the reason / charity for which they are fundraising, or on a topical day such as World Book Day where the children can dress up as their favourite character from a book. Asking for a small fee of 50p or £1 per child throughout the school can raise a substantial amount of money.

These are just some of the most tried-and-tested fundraising events that have achieved both fun and achievement with the pupils taking part, as well as those all-important pennies for a good cause. If you want to think outside of the box, then why not try taking a classic activity such as one of these, and putting a twist on it? For example, the sponsored walk could be carried out in fancy dress, or the cake bake could be gluten-free to increase awareness about allergies and ingredients. Enjoy!

How do you raise money in your school? Let us know in the comments.

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