Kristen Bell is using her voice and social media platform to help teachers get the supplies they need to make a difference in the classroom.
The Veronica Mars actress, 39, has been sharing individual testimonies of teachers on her Instagram in a social media campaign called #FeaturedTeacherFriday.
Accompanying the posts are links to teacher-curated wish lists on Amazon, which include the supplies educators need to enhance their students’ academic experience. Bell encourages her 11 million followers to donate.
Veronica Landa, a middle school Spanish teacher featured on Bell’s Instagram last month, told the mother of two about the economic disadvantages her students at a Title 1 school face, explaining that they were unable to afford books, among other items.
Landa asked Bell for help growing her library, which could ultimately improve students’ reading comprehension skills.
“This opportunity would help me incorporate books to expand my Spanish library and enhance students’ reading comprehension skills,” she wrote in a note later shared on Bell’s Instagram. “My students will also be able to improve their speaking and writing skills and knowledge of the Hispanic culture.”
Within a few days of Bell sharing Landa’s story, the middle school teacher said her Amazon wish list was nearly fulfilled.
“I was speechless,” Landa told Good Morning America. “I’ve always had an Amazon wish list with the things I wanted for my students but never did I believe this would happen.”
She told the outlet that she had previously just used a pen and paper to track the progress of her over 100 students. Thanks to Bell’s campaign, she now has a laptop, which was donated by a stranger through the wish list.
“People were able to send a note with each thing they bought and I was just sitting there crying, overwhelmed with what people were saying,” Landa told GMA. “There was even a girl who is 16 and took her own money and bought me a book.”
“She said she wants to become a music teacher, and the fact that a 16-year-old was supporting me, it put me in tears,” she added.
Bell first launched the campaign in September 2018, according to GMA, originally calling it #10FeaturedTeachers before changing it to #FeaturedTeacherFriday.
Landa said the supplies she received through Bell’s help will change the way she teaches.
“I’m really happy because it’ll really benefit my students, and that’s my No. 1 goal,” she told GMA. “I can change my entire curriculum and implement the books and everything else I’ve received.”