A Practical Guide for Finding Free Reinforcers

Joan Houghton, MS Ed
University of Kansas

Rachel L. Freeman, PhD
University of Kansas

© Copyright Joan Houghton and Rachel L. Freeman 2003: No portions of this manuscript may be reproduced for dissemination without written permission of the authors.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The development of this booklet would not have been possible without the work of many people. Renee Transue, Lauren Vanek, and Fern Saunders spent countless hours checking mailing addresses and internet sites listed in this booklet.

The administrators, students, and staff from Eisenhower and French Middle Schools helped pursue the freebies listed in this booklet while juggling their busy schedules. Their efforts helped us make sure the information in this booklet is useful and worthwhile.

Last but not least, are the donators of freebies who helped raise the spirits of students with their generous contributions and showing that they cared.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

  1. Sports and Organizations ..................................................................................................1
    1. Steps for Writing Letters to Large Organizations or Sports Teams.............................. 2-3
    2. Example Request Letter for Sports Teams ................................................................. 4
    3. Template Request Letter for Sports Teams .................................................................5
    4. Example Thank You Letter for Sports Teams .............................................................6
    5. Template Thank You Letter for Sports Teams ............................................................7
    6. Address List of Sports Teams.................................................................................... 8
      1. Basketball Teams: Mens' and Womens' ..............................................................8-10
      2. Baseball Teams ..................................................................................................11-13
      3. Football Teams ..................................................................................................14-15
      4. Hockey Teams ...................................................................................................16-17
      5. Soccer Teams: Mens' and Womens' ...................................................................18-19
      6. Other Sports Organizations .................................................................................20-22
    7. Kansas' University and College Sports Teams .............................................................23
      1. Kansas State University Wildcats ........................................................................23
      2. The University of Kansas Jayhawks .....................................................................24
      3. Washburn University Ichabods ............................................................................25
      4. Emporia State University Hornets ........................................................................26
      5. Pittsburg State University Gorillas ........................................................................27
      6. Wichita State University Shockers .......................................................................28
    8. National Football League Offer for Freebies ................................................................29
      1. National Football League Offer Form ..................................................................30-31
    9. Example Request Letter for Organizations .................................................................. 32
    10. Template Request Letter for Organizations ..................................................................33
    11. Example Thank You Letter for Organizations ..............................................................34
    12. Template Request Letter for Organizations ..................................................................35
    13. Address List of Organizations .....................................................................................36-38
  2. Celebrities .........................................................................................................................39
    1. Steps for Writing Letters for Celebrity Autographs, Pictures, and Posters.....................40-41
    2. Example Request Letter .............................................................................................42
    3. Template Request Letter ............................................................................................43
    4. Example Thank You Letter .........................................................................................44
    5. Template Thank You Letter ........................................................................................45
    6. Lists of Celebrity Addresses .......................................................................................46
      1. Movie Stars and Talk Show Hosts ......................................................................46-56
      2. Government Officials ...........................................................................................57
      3. Singers and Bands ...............................................................................................58-63
      4. Cartoons, Cartoonists, and Comics ......................................................................64
      5. Astronauts ...........................................................................................................65
  3. Wal-Mart Grants ................................................................................................................66
    1. Steps for Writing a Letter for a Wal-Mart Donation .....................................................67-68
    2. Example Request Letter ..............................................................................................69
    3. Template Request Letter .............................................................................................70
    4. Example Thank You Letter .........................................................................................71
    5. Template Thank You Letter ........................................................................................72
    6. Wal-Mart Super Center Application ............................................................................73
    7. Wal-Mart Super Center Donation Policy .....................................................................74
  4. Cold Calls ..........................................................................................................................75
    1. Steps to Conducting Cold Calls: Approaching Businesses ............................................76-78
    2. Example Flyer .............................................................................................................79
    3. Template Flyer ............................................................................................................80
    4. Example Thank You Letter ..........................................................................................81
    5. Template Thank You Letter .........................................................................................82
  5. Internet Resources ..............................................................................................................83
    1. Steps for Accessing Fun Activities on the Internet .........................................................84-85
    2. Fun Internet Resources ................................................................................................86-90
  6. Resource Books .................................................................................................................91
    1. Resource Books for Teachers and Volunteers ..............................................................92-95
  7. Bibliography .......................................................................................................................96

INTRODUCTION

This booklet is a compilation of tried and true resources, activities, and guidelines for all of the parent volunteers, educators, and students who are searching for freebies but don't know where to begin. It is exciting. It is fun. But, it takes time, some persistence, creativity, and patience. The payoff is the reaction on students' faces who have earned rewards for meeting their goals, improving their social skills, and becoming responsible and respectful citizens in their schools and communities.

In the Table of Contents, you will find step by step instructions for writing request and thank you letters. Templates for these letters have been provided as well as resource lists available in each section of this booklet. When appropriate, information is provided by grade level.

A supplemental CD ROM is included in this booklet where you will find the entire booklet including templates for request and thank you letters, and flyers that can be used to ask for freebies. All you have to do is make a copy of each template and add the information that applies to your school.

This booklet should provide you with enough information, examples, and resources for you to become successful at obtaining freebies. Remember to check websites and addresses since they change frequently. Resources for obtaining freebies frequently change too. Bigger and better guides are published every year. Good luck in your pursuits.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Fulgaro, E.B., & Fulgaro, J.M. (1991). Free sports memorabilia: Where to get it. White Hall, VA: Betterway Publications.

Harrington, B., & Christensen, B. (1998). Unbelievably good deals that you absolutely can't get unless you're a teacher. Linvingwood, IL: Contemporary Express.

Hooper, H. (Ed.). (2000). Free stuff for kids: Hundreds of free and up-to-a dollar things kids can send for by mail. Minnetonka, MN: Meadowbrook Press.

Lesko, M., & Martello, M. (n.d.). 1001 free goodies and cheapies. Kensington, MD: Authors.

Levine, M. (1999). The kid's address book. New York, NY: Berkley Publishing.

Lowell House Juvenile. (1998). The official freebies for kids: Something for nothing or next to nothing. Los Angeles, CA: Publishers.

Woo, D.J. (1999). The official freebies for teachers. Lincolnwood, IL: NTC/Contemporary Publishing.