ST. LOUIS — All week on TISL we've been surprising local teachers with the things they need for their classrooms. Our final teacher is from Mullanphy Elementary in St. Louis' Shaw neighborhood. Mrs. Jennifer Doermer brings confidence to her kids through music.
There are no chairs or books inside this music classroom at Mullanphy Elementary. Here, students are free to bang out a beat or belt out a song. They're led by the passionate Mrs. Jennifer Doermer.
"I get the tingles myself when I see my kids having a great time. They get so excited to try something new and I get to see the confidence that they can build in my classroom and I really feel that’s what they can take with them throughout their day and their other classes," said Mrs. Doermer.
Principal Kelli Casper said, "kids will explain how they get out of their shell when they go into her room."
Some of the girls from Mrs. Doermer’s music class say she has them singing a different tune.
"She makes me feel like I’m at home and I can express myself with music," said one girl.
"I can just get lose. I can express myself. I can ask her if I can play instruments that calm me down," another explained.
Mrs. Doermer said, "I'm bringing them joy you know I think we can all agree that music is what you get in the car and you pump up and you decompress from a long day of work that’s what music brings to kids."
Like most teachers across the country, and here in St. Louis, they spend a lot of their own money to fill their classroom with the things they need.
"It is really hard and I mean honestly I do invest my own money but that’s what I can bring to the classroom and that’s the excitement I can bring to my kids and it’s well worth it to me," said Mrs. Doermer.
Mrs. Doermer has no idea we've already purchased all the instruments she needed for her class from her wish list on donorschoose.org and planned a big surprise with some of her students.
The kids went wild and I have a feeling the classroom will be filled with music and smiles for a long time.
One of our viewers, Erin Campbell from Troy, Ill wrote in to tell us about a great resource for teachers where membership is free and they can get great deals on supplies. It’s called the National Association for the Exchange of Industrial Resources.
You can learn more about them online.