Wednesday, July 25, 2012

HOW TO PAY OUR CHILDREN'S WAY THROUGH COLLEGE, part 1, 1923

TREES FOR EACH CHILD—Mrs. S. F., Georgia

Hurrah for a chance to tell about our hobby—the education of the Little Four! My husband and I had a hard time in college trying to earn our way through and we resolved to make every effort to give our children their years in college free from this anxiety.

We live in the mountains on a small farm part of which is not fit for general farming. This land we dedicated to the education of the children. We determined from the beginning to refrain from buying fancy clothing, fragile toys and things that are not necessary for comfort, health or development. Every penny so saved we felt we were saving for education and we felt that if the children were given training for a life work which they like, then we would have provided a rich and sufficient legacy worth more than money.

From their cradles we have talked college to our Little Four and they understand that “college” means studying the line in which they are interested. They may go to “Tech” or to the Agricultural College or to the State University or to a business school but they know that at the right time will go somewhere to be equipped for work and life.

The kick of the hobby, the thrill of the plot is this—the children are education themselves, they are sharing our responsibility, our burden of seeing that they get their life tools. They will know the cost of an education before they get to college and I know they will not fritter away their time there.

Out of money carefully saved, we bought and planted for each baby in his first year, fifteen pecan or apple or peach trees. The children take great pride in their trees. Except for spraying them, they take care of the trees without much assistance. The fruit and nuts will be sold and the money put in the bank for education.

The eldest boy had pecan trees planted when he was a month old. These trees are now bearing a few nuts. Each year will bring a larger crop. Already the peaches are bringing in returns. The apples are slow but sure. The money derived from the trees will be invested but all the proceeds will return to the great cause—the schooling of four enthusiastic youngsters to whom an education already is a very vital thing.

For eight years we have been working out our idea and while the trees grow, the children grow and the savings grow. The children are developing business ability, thrift, ability to work, a sense of values, and a knowledge of the cost of education. Years from now when they are grown, the faithful trees will be working on, bringing in a steady income. Fruit trees of standing varieties are almost as dependable as National Banks. Our fruit trees are the guardians of the children's future. We love them.