Thursday, March 5, 2009
At our school we are raising money for a very good cause, Lymphoma & Leukemia Research. The program is called "Pennies for Pasta" - and no I am not about to plead for money. I am going to tell you how cut-throat we (teachers) are behind closed doors!
One teacher on our team (of 4) is in charge of collecting the donations for the team. We were agog when our students (96) brought in close to $250 the first week. Our school qualifies for title 1, meaning more than 1/2 our population qualifies for free or reduced lunch. Other attempts at fundraising have not been a huge hit - so we, as their teachers, were psyched! Wow! Such caring and philanthropy - we knew that we had the best team and were sure to win the prize.
The prize? Yes, a prize - incentive if you will. Lunch catered by the Olive Garden. Apparently food is a good motivator. Well, (and this is when we start down the slippery cut-throat path) we decided we didn't want to submit our change to the lead teacher for counting over the weekend. We decided to keep it to ourselves. Why? Because we want to win! So, Monday rolls around and we discover that we are not the lead, but we are close....
Sliding down the slope: We tell our students the other class standings - reminding them that they are to keep our totals to themselves. (see we are bringing the innocent 7th graders into it) Soon, with the competitive spirit kicking-in we are up to the mid 300's. Now we are making the big push - we have student-counters who are able to count in the store room when they are done with their work and we know we are climbing. We (as teachers) complain that another team is offering homework passes and other goodies for giving (they want lunch too!). The students feed off the cloak and dagger feel of the giving and love to talk about it - among the team. We now have nearly $500 - the students are hyped-up and strongly motivated. The scouts were sent out today and came back with the report that there is a team nearing $450 (we perceive them as the largest threat). But, it occurs to me that there could easily be another team as devious as us - and what then??? EEEK! Only 1 day to go - maybe we could do free time for a buck? Ugghhhh - who knew giving could skate the thin ice of morality?