Thursday, November 09, 2006


Beatrice, one of my students came up to me today and said "Hey teacher, give me a dollar for my birthday!" I said "" and didn't think anything of it. She walked away looking really offended, but I get asked for money all the time from kids saying they need bus money or lunch money. The administration has made it pretty clear that we are not allowed to give money to kids. I think a lot of kids probably lie and even if they don't I can't get into the habit of paying for someone's lunch everyday.

Anyway later I saw Beatrice asking another student for a birthday dollar and I was very surprised to see that the other girl actually pulled a dollar out and gave it to her. I asked Beatrice what she was doing. She told me that all of the kids did that on their birthdays. She said they didn't give presents for each other they just gave out dollars and that when it was your birthday you were supposed to walk around asking for dollars. It seems like a really weird situation to me, to go walking around begging for birthday money, but its a part of their culture that I was unaware of. After talking Beatrice asked me again to give her a dollar.

I said no, but Happy Birthday.


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