365 Days of Earrings

Friday, January 7, 2011

This morning, I focused on my coin earrings. I have pennies and nickels; I have coins from the Virgin Islands.  Those will have to wait for another day: today I chose a pair given to me by one of my first 3rd grade students.

Isabelle went to Guatemala on vacation. She missed school. And when she returned she strode up to me, practically dancing with anticipation, and handed me a gift. When I opened the tiny box, I gasped. "How lovely!"

"They are Guatemalan coins," she announced with pride. "You taught me how to make change."

"And look at the green beads, your favorite color!" I replied. "Coins with green beads! I will always remember that you gave me these earrings."

Why did I want coins today? Today my class and I calculated how to allocate the $2,845 that we raised for the non-profit organization Room to Read. Should we pay $125 to commission a children's book in a local language in Laos or Zambia? $1000 to send a girl to secondary school? $500 to train a library teacher? How many of each choice? We sold our own handicrafts items at a holiday craft bazaar in December. Fleece hats, clay ornaments, festive headbands, baked goods. We earned $2,845. Through our own labor, my 3rd graders and I are sending money to promote literacy in developing countries. Coins, like the Trick-or-Treat for Unicef of my childhood.

The next time I see Isabelle, who must be almost 15 by now, I hope I'll remember to tell her how much those earrings mean to me.

1 comment:

M. Kasch said...

What a fun blog! It's a great way to share your memories, beautiful earrings, and thoughts! :-) I wonder how many of us are going to be sending you some earrings, now? ;-)