November 2014

RAFT believes the best way to spark the love of learning for the next generation of thinkers, innovators, problem-solvers and creators is through hands-on learning. As a nonprofit organization founded in 1994, RAFT leverages community donations and volunteer support to serve 12,000 educators each year who teach over 900,000 students.



60% off algebra tiles, now just 50¢ 
50% off diffraction grating 200pk, now $20.00
50% off Mrs. Grossman’s sheet protectors, now 25¢
25% off cow magnets, now just $1.50

Sticker assortment starting at 10¢

All Mrs. Grossman’s stickers buy one get one free (of equal or lesser value)

PLUS: Great new holiday merchandise!

was last modified: November 4th, 2014 by admin

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News and Events

Gift of Reading 2014

Once again RAFT has partnered with the San Jose Mercury News for the annual Gift of Reading book drive to promote literacy in our community and give children, many who have never owned a book of their own, the chance to love reading. From November 18, 2014 through December 15, 2014, community members can donate books at 17 collection centers around the Bay Area or virtually through our Roonga online drive. Click here for drop off locations and donation links. Last year, we gave away more than 40,000 books to children and classroom libraries.

These books will soon be available to RAFT members who want to give their students the gift of reading this holiday season. Distribution should begin in the first week of December, stay tuned for more information. Need a large quantity of books? Contact Shirley at so that we can try to accommodate your request.

RAFT is also looking for volunteers to help sort and distribute the donations. Sorting 40,000 books is a HUGE undertaking, and we greatly appreciate your support!  If you have any time to help with this project please sign up online at

Gobble, Gobble RAFT Membership Offer!

This is it! The last reduced general membership offer for this year!

Saturday, November 22 and Tuesday, November 25: New or renewed memberships just $25!

Wednesday, November 26 only: $20 memberships! This is the final $20 general membership offer this year in honor of RAFT’s 20th anniversary (we’re still celebrating!). 

Memberships cannot be extended for more than 18 months. No online offers for these prices, you must come into a RAFT Bay Area location to take advantage of this offer and must meet membership guidelines.

Upcoming Holiday Closures

Thanksgiving – RAFT will be closed November 27th-29th.

Christmas/New Year – RAFT will be closed December 15th – January 5th.

Boy Scouts of America Open House

Saturday, November 22, 2014, 11:00AM – 2:00PM (RAFT Redwood City)

Learn how RAFT supports the Scouting community with our Scout-tested, engaging, and fun hands-on learning kits that map to STEM, NOVA, and Super NOVA Project requirements. Take advantage of the BSA $20 membership special and enjoy refreshments. 

Join us for Afternoon Tea & Lecture

Saturday, December 6th, 12:00-2:30PM (RAFT Redwood City)

Historical, Cultural and Social Links to DOWNTON  ABBEY

In this fascinating illustrated lecture, Dr. DiAnn Ellis discusses the world of Downton Abbey within the geopolitical and sociohistorical context of the era. You’ll learn about the amazing Victorian and Edwardian periods. Tea and biscuits will be served at the Interval.

Dr. DiAnn Ellis was a Professor of Education for 34 years at San Francisco State University. She has put together this mesmerizing program inspired by the much watched and globally applauded PBS television series, Downton Abbey.

* FREE , however RSVP requested. Please email Ofelia at: if you plan to attend. Space is limited to 30. Vintage Dress is Welcome!

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Hands-On Activities

Modeling DNA - This simplified DNA model uses beads and chenille stems (pipe cleaners) to represent nucleotide components. DNA is the fundamental hereditary material for all living organisms. The structure of DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) was understood only after years of scientific research. Although simple in structure, DNA carries the code for all the complexities of life.

modeling dna
Grades Covered: 7 through 12
Subject(s) Covered: Life Science

Curriculum Topics: Biology, Genetics, DNA, Molecules, Macromolecules, Base Pairing Rules 

Visit the RAFT Online Store, and if you haven’t done so already, link your RAFT membership to your online store account to receive lower member pricing on all kits ordered online.

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Professional Development


RAFT Fall Workshop Schedule

RAFT’s workshop program is designed to enrich educational programs by facilitating the practice of hands-on teaching across the curriculum. All RAFT workshops offer you the opportunity to earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs) from San Jose State University.

Saturday, November 22nd – More Teambuilding for Kids: Expand your variety of teambuilding concepts with 20 games and ideas designed to connect students across diverse backgrounds, promote communication skills and enrich the classroom culture. More teambuilding for kids will simply add to your collection of games learned in Teambuilding for Kids.

Saturday, November 22nd – Next Generation Science Standards for Beginners: The Next Generation Science Standards represent an approach to teaching science in a real-world, practice-based way in hopes of inspiring the next generation of scientists and engineers. This approach is not without its challenges. In this workshop participants will learn methods of understanding the performance expectations, or PEs, and the underlying skills that students must learn in order to achieve the PEs.

For a full class list or to register visit

If you have any questions about our workshop program or any other services please contact us at

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was last modified: November 4th, 2014 by admin