Though thousands of miles and an ocean away, Japan is close in the hearts of Manlius Pebble Hill first-graders.
Having earlier this year studying the country of Japan, the 6-year-olds were saddened by the recent disaster there. They felt a special connection to the people of Japan and were immediately determined to find a way to help them.
This Friday March 25 the students are sponsoring a special school-wide dress down day to raise money for relief efforts in Japan. To encourage the whole MPH community to support the fundraiser, the first grade wrote a song to the tune of "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star," which it is proudly performing at assemblies and lunch periods for all divisions:
"We really want to help Japan.
They have lost a lot of land.
We can show them how we care.
We will send your money there.
Bring as much as you can spare.
Because our friends are everywhere."
The students are creating fliers and posters to publicize the dress down day, as well as making collection boxes and designing T-shirts to wear this week to advertise their cause.
A highlight of the first grade unit on Japan was sampling traditional Japanese foods at a special lunch last fall at Ichiban. Now, to join with their friends at Ichiban, first-graders have decided to add the money from the MPH dress down day to money raised at the restaurant's "Sushi and Pancakes" fundraiser on Sunday March 27. All the funds will go to the Red Cross in Japan.