The Northwood held their second Penny War to help raise funds for Minong’s Operation Rudolph program. Operation Rudolph is a local project that tries to help area families who may not have the extra funds to purchase gifts for their children, ensuring they can still have a happy Christmas. This endeavor is spearheaded by the Minong Fire Department and the Minong Fire and Ambulance Auxiliary. The Penny War was hosted by Northwood’s Student Council and National Honor Society and it involved the entire student body from kindergarten to 12th grade.
Some people may be wondering what a penny war entails. The way that Northwood does their Penny War is dividing their school into three groups, elementary (K-5th), middle school (6th - 8th including NorthStar Community Charter), and high school (9th - 12th). Each grade level then competed with each other within their own group to see which class had the highest positive total at the end of the eleven day challenge. Pennies gave a class a positive total and silver coins and green bills gave the group a negative total. If one grade targeted another grade, they would put silver coins or dollar bills into a class’s container to “sabotage” that group into being at a lower total. There were days when some classes’ daily total was a negative amount because of another competitive class. The students checked their class’s daily total to see where their group was in the race to win. The students also had a couple of days that helped with their strategic plan for winning. On November 27th (the National Day of Giving), all pennies brought in for a class that day were matched by a Northwood teacher. Another day was called “Twisted Thursday” when the pennies were negative and the silver and green monies were positive for that day. This helped to bring some groups into the lead who were previously in the negative numbers. And the last day was called “Every Little Bit Counts” and all of the money put into the classes’ container for the day was counted as positive. The students really had fun with the Penny Wars and brought in a total of $1,110.00 for the Operation Rudolph program. The winning groups were the Second Grade, NorthStar Community Charter, and the Seniors. The winning classes received some free-time on computers or phones, which was a non-monetary prize to reward the students for their fundraising efforts.
Susan Conaway represented Operation Rudolph and accepted the check from Northwood senior Payton Miller, who is a member of both the Student Council and National Honor Society. Conaway said the donation brought tears to her eyes because donations were down this year in general, so this monetary donation will really help out the cause.