Penny Wars

A pathy is one vocabulary word Olivia Ruby hasn’t learned this year.

Ruby, a student in Michael Thorton’s third grade class at Whitehall Elementary school, was instrumental in starting a fundraising effort that rose $2400 for victims of the earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan.

Students at the school spent the week before spring break collecting all their loose change – not to mention all the loose change of their parents and grandparents – as they participated in a fundraising effort school librarian Sara Lestage dubbed “Penny Wars.”

The efforts started after Ruby saw a news story about the crisis in Japan.

“I was watching the news and saw how bad it was,” Ruby said. “I wanted to help.”

So she came to school and starting hanging up signs asking people to donate money to help the people in Japan.

Lestage saw the signs and decided to lend a hand, helping Ruby organize “Penny Wars.”

The idea was simple; make the fundraiser into a competition in which each class tries to outdo the other by collecting more change.

As a reward, the winning class would earn a Pajamas, Popcorn and Movie party.

The idea took off.

Each morning, after they hung their coats and backpacks in their cubbies, students rushed past the main entrance, eager to dump their change in one of seven jars, each corresponding to a different grade level.

Some students would come up with a handful of change; others came with full Ziploc bags and fistfuls of rolled pennies.

Some even threw in bills of varying sizes, including a couple of twenties and even a fifty dollar bill.

There was one little catch; pennies and dollars counted toward the final count while nickels, dimes and quarters subtracted from the final count.

“They been going around sabotaging each other,” said Lestage.

One student could be heard saying “sixth grade is going down,” as he threw a handful of silver change in the sixth grade jar last Thursday.

The project proved to be extremely popular among students.

“They’ve been incredibly enthusiastic about it,” said Lestage. “After Monday I decided I needed bigger jars.”

By Wednesday evening the class had raised $800. By Thursday, Lestage decided to bring in her luggage so she could wheel all the money to her car at the end of the day.

Principal David St. Germain described the effort as “unprecedented.”

“It’s a good message to send to kids that they really can make a difference,” Lestage said.

All the money that was collected was given to the business office who will write a check to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund.

 “I hope they (the Japanese people) can buy the things they need to survive.”

Comments

comments

Read more in this week's Times in newsstands now or click here to read right now with our e-edition.

Tags: ,

Classifieds 07/20/16

Granville to pursue $30K Rail Trail planning grant

Rail Trail

By Krystle S. Morey The Granville Town Board voted unanimously at its meeting last Thursday to be the lead agency […]

Armstrong won’t leave GOP

Trump 1

By Dan King Whitehall Supervisor George Armstrong is no fan of Donald Trump, but he no longer plans to leave […]

Whitehall to host All-Class Reunion

Whitehall Powwow 1 (1)

By Dan King Organizers are hoping it will be the event of the summer. The Whitehall High School All-Class Reunion […]

‘Pokemon Go’ app takes village by storm

The Veterans Memorial Park is just one of several Pokestops in the village of Granville where players of the new ‘Pokemon Go’ mobile app can go to earn points and gather props to advance in the game.

By Krystle S. Morey Pokemon are running rampant around town – and so are Pokemon hunters. David McFarren, of Whitehall, […]

Weekender – 07/15/16

Lakes Classifieds – 07/15/16

Lakes Region Freepress – 07/15/16

Northshire Freepress – 07/15/16

North Country Freepress – 07/15/16

Granville school board rescinds Torres appointment

Only three board members showed up to last week's meeting, which is not enough to hold a meeting.

By Krystle S. Morey Granville school officials said Monday night that the school does not have a varsity football coach. […]

Stemstock: More than a concert

stemstock

By Dan King It started 20 years ago as a graduation party and grew to be a huge annual festival, […]