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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Creasing for a Good Cause: 'Cranes for Kids'

Thousands of children were affected by the recent earthquake and tsunami in Japan and many are left with nothing. When Patricia Londono, a 6th grade Science teacher at Asa Low Jr. Intermediate, heard of a unique opportunity to offer assistance she quickly enlisted the help of her students.

The Cranes for Kids program is meant to empower children to help other kids in need by using their creativity in the art of folding paper origami cranes. Oshkosh B’Gosh has sponsored this relief effort and will donate one article of children’s clothing per paper crane (up to 50,000 cranes).

Two sixth grade teams (Orissa and Himalayas) swung into action, with a goal of folding 1,000 origami cranes for this worthy cause.

“I think sometimes we take clothing and everything we have for granted,” said sixth grader Carrigan Hudgins. “I think the people of Japan are going through a very hard time and it’s important that we do all we can to help them.”

Students studied a “How-To” video about origami and began folding as quickly as possible. After a couple of weeks, they had produced more than triple their goal amount.

“It’s amazing! We’ve folded between 3,500 and 4,000 cranes,” said Ms. Londono. “Students are still bringing handfuls of cranes to me!”

Paper cranes are considered a symbol of great prosperity in the Japanese culture. According to ancient Japanese legend, a group of 1,000 paper origami cranes has the power to grant a wish for someone.

“The students love the idea of helping other kids,” said Londono. “It is our hope that we make many wishes come true for the victims of Japan.”

The Low Intermediate flock of paper cranes will be delivered to the Oshkosh store at Grapevine Mills Mall at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 23, 2011.