Learning on Lemonade Day

Ira Cross ES honor society sells lemonade
By: Todd Martin
The sweet and sour lemony beverage tied to summer and picnics is now synonymous with teaching children entrepreneurship and generosity.
The past 10 years around the first weekend of May, families across the Fort Hood area set up stands to sell lemonade and learn the intricacies of expenses and profits, location, marketing and customer service.
In Killeen ISD, several schools have seized on the Lemonade Day curriculum to teach financial literacy and have some fun doing it.
The Ira Cross Elementary School National Elementary Honor Society has made the activity a tradition and a fundraiser. The organization set up at the Lions Club Park in Killeen to sell four flavors of lemonade Saturday.
Two days before the sale, the honor society met in the cafeteria to work on posters and to stir up some lemony goodness for a taste test.
“Last year, we sold lemonade and it was fun making it and hanging out with friends,” said Ira Cross fifth-grader Yazmin Pangelinan, honor society president.
The fundraiser allows the organization to host an end-of-year party and to do something nice for school staff members.
“It’s fun – we make posters to get people to come and buy and we compete with others,” she said, referencing the many groups that set up in the large park.
They sold original, strawberry, tropical and blueberry lemonade at $1 a cup. Enthusiastic students greeted park goers, some coming to vote in municipal elections, with encouragement to try their product.
“I love it because we can all work together,” said Pangelinan. “It’s interesting we get to do this because usually it’s just adults with jobs who get to do this.”
Pershing Park Elementary School second-grade teacher Sonia Aleman gave Lemonade Day a try this year, setting up a sort of practice run with fake money for students and staff members to use at four stands her students set up in the classroom.
During the day Friday, classes entered Aleman’s class and students chose from the different varieties.
The activity, the teacher said, coincided with financial literacy and gave students a chance to learn more about teamwork. They made signs and designed their stands. At the end they counted their money to pay back their teacher, the investor.
“I saw the opportunity to get them engaged and to help the community and work in groups,” Aleman said.
“We’ve been learning to make lemonade,” said second-grader Izabelle Vazquez, “and how much to spend and give back and what we can buy.”
“I think it’s the best day ever,” the second-grader said. “We get to celebrate with the people and everyone is nice.”