Mrs. Tee's Penny Party©

Did you read the story in the newspaper about the Tee family—Mr. and Mrs. Tee and their four children, Ty, Terrie, Tommy and Tina? One day when the children were watching television, a commercial announced that the circus was coming to town. The announcer said that the tickets were only ten dollars.

The children became excited and ran to their mother to ask if they might go. However, Mrs. Tee had already planned the family’s spending money for the month, so she had to say “no.”

“But Mother,” said Tommy, “the man on television said it costs only ten dollars for children under the age of twelve.”

Only ten dollars?” said Mrs. Tee. “Do you know what only means? It means ten dollars for each of you, and that means four times ten dollars. That’s forty dollars, and that’s what only means. She then thought for a moment and continued. “But perhaps there is a way for you to earn some money to go to the circus.”

“How can we do that?” asked Tina.

“Well,” said Mrs. Tee, “when I was a young girl, we gave penny parties to raise money for things we wanted.”

“What’s a penny party?” asked Terrie, who was the oldest.

“A penny party is like a little fair given in your own backyard,” she said. “All the children in the neighborhood are invited to come, but they must bring a bag of pennies, nickels, and quarters to get in. Then they pay for everything at the party: lemonade, candies, cake, and especially games with prizes.”

“Gosh,” exclaimed Ty, “what a great idea! The kids around here have never been to anything like this before. I already have a basketball goal. I can charge a nickel a throw for the basket. If they make it, they win a prize.”

“I can do magic tricks in my tent and charge fifty cents to get in,” said Tommy.

“I can sell lemonade,” said Tina.

“I’ll make all the tickets,” announced Terrie.

“Well,” said Mrs. Tee, “it looks like we will have a penny party. Next Saturday is the perfect day.” And it was.

The yard was decorated, and was crowded with children. Tommy was dressed up, and had a straw hat and walking cane. He was standing next to a large wooden barrel shouting, “Step right up, everybody. Come see the big monkey inside the barrel. It costs only ten cents.”

The children laughed out loud as they looked into the barrel and saw themselves in a big mirror at the bottom.

Everyone enjoyed the penny party. After it was over, the four children sat down to count all their pennies, nickels, and quarters. Terrie finished counting and said, “It looks like we don’t have enough for the circus tickets. We have only twenty-eight dollars.”

Mrs. Tee then smiled and said, “Now I think you all know what the word only means. But you have worked hard, and only because we love you, your father and I will give you the other pennies, nickels, and quarters for the tickets.”

The children were overjoyed and all hugged their mother.

Just then, the telephone rang. Mrs. Tee answered. It was the local newspaper calling. They had heard about this unusual party and wanted to know more.

“Well,” said Mrs. Tee, “let’s just say it was only a tea party that made lots of cents.”

To learn the value of a dollar,
Only work makes you a scholar.
Piggy Bank Piggy Bank