Become a Grant Writing Guru and Spread the Word
Winning a grant is an exciting event and it might inspire you not just to keep writing applications, but to also try and convince colleagues to try too. However, convincing others to write a grant application can be difficult. Grant writing appears like a daunting task, but the benefits of receiving funding far outweigh the application process. Here are some strategies to help you convert your colleagues into grant writers.
Give Them Confidence
Writing a grant application requires confidence in the proposed project and in the applicant’s writing abilities. Reminding colleagues that they are experts in their fields helps them see that they can describe their project best. It is also helpful to frame the conversation around providing innovative programs for students that impacts learning. Pointing out that your coworkers are trying to do the best thing for their students and for their classroom can provide a boost of confidence.
Encourage Their Passion
Most people are unlikely to spend extra time working on a grant proposal that doesn’t excite them. Therefore, try to steer colleagues towards a specific project rather than a broad topic. For example, seeking funding for iPads might lack passion and an inspiring need. But wanting to create a flipped classroom in which iPads support a larger goal moves the funding request into a compelling case. Funders want to fill a real need and see impact from their grants. Discussing colleagues’ strengths and passions, as well as their students’ needs, is a good first step in encouraging passion to drive project requests.
Be a Team
Instead of suggesting colleagues jump into writing a proposal by themselves, try suggesting a project you can do together. This gives fellow teachers a chance to try the process and learn from your expertise. Funders also love to see collaboration. It broadens their reach and increases chances of success.
Don’t Get Overwhelmed
Searching through thousands of grant opportunities to find the perfect match for your project can be overwhelming. Try and gear your search toward what you and your colleagues want to achieve. Creativity is necessary to find grants that are specific enough to the project need without being too limited.
Go for It
Help your colleagues identify a funding opportunity with an easy application process and have them apply. Some funders have relatively simple online application forms. Those make for a great first experience.
Spread the Word
Now that you’ve successfully helped a fellow teacher to seek funding, it’s time for them to help you spread the word. Ask them to share their story the next time you want to help a colleague get into grant writing and join you as a fellow grant writing guru.