January 16, 2011

Wad of Cash

My wallet won't shut.

Nope, I didn't win the lottery.  Nope, I didn't receive an inheritance.  And definitely nope, my school did not decide to start paying me for all the hours of work I put in outside the school day.  Actually, the reason my wallet won't shut is not because I have a huge amount of money in it at all.  Don't I wish.

My wallet won't shut because this week at school was a Scholastic Book Order week.  At many schools, books orders are simple.  Send home the forms, parents mostly put in orders online, mail in a few checks and order forms that come in the old fashioned way.  Receive books.  Done.

At my school, it's not so simple.  Being in a low-income community, I'm lucky I have kids ordering books at all.  I totally understand that when times are tough and budgets are tight luxuries get cut.  But it gives me physical pain to think about how often books are cut instead of cable and video games.  This year I have a group that loves their books, and every month I have had a handful of kiddos order books.  But at my school, checks and online orders are a rarity.  Nope, I get orders like this:

Yep, a ziplock bag of ones and change.  I had one kid this week actually turn in her order mostly in dimes.  I guess she cracked open her piggy bank for that one!  Adorable.  It makes me so happy to think about the fact that many of my kiddos are using their hard-saved pennies (literally) to order books.  That means that they are choosing them themselves, and it definitely means they will read them.  And hopefully (fingers crossed) it also means that they are on their way to becoming lifelong readers.

Why am I complaining then about my wallet?  Well, the kiddos don't know that I can't mail a big ol' bag of ones and change to Scholastic.  So I pay the balance on my credit card and keep the cash.  Easy enough, except now I have a wallet full of ones and dimes.  Hmm perhaps a visit to some sort of arcade or vending machine is in order...

Can't wait until the books arrive.  I am as impatient as the kids, because I cashed in a whole bunch of bonus points with this order.  Eee!  :)


  1. If I didn't know better, I'd think we taught at the same school! I swear I got a big ole bag of that same thing this week too!

    My partner teacher told me that she never does book orders because the kids don't order books. Every order I've done so far this year, the kids have spent at least $50 total. The first one was over $150 (thus earning us a TON of bonus points and about 15 free books!) and this week's was almost $90. They most often pay in cash also...and I have had kids pay entirely in quarters twice this year. It's kind of amusing even if it makes my wallet a bit fat for a bit :)

  2. hahaha, Sunny, sometimes when I read your blog I DO feel like we teach at the same school! Too funny.

    Last year I did not get too many orders, but this year I've been giving out a couple different catalogs every time and looking through them with the kids for 5 minutes in class, recommending books. Seems to be getting them excited to order! And I am REVELING in the bonus points. Seriously, I get like a kid in a candy shop spending them!!

  3. You made me laugh so hard!! That is exactly the kind of payment I get from my students at book order time!


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