Paying attention in Marcus Franco's class pays off.
Students in his Algebra I classes at Costa Mesa High School culminated a year-long accountability project last week by collectively pulling $4,200 out of a "money grab box." The box contained currency amounts ranging from 25 cents to $100, and students earned draws from it for their test scores, attendance records and paying attention in class. Each paper dollar was inscribed with a dollar amount that could be redeemed for real cash later that afternoon.
The classroom was filled with cupcakes, soda and anticipation as classmates filed to the front of the room on Friday. They took turns donning a blindfold and reaching into the money box.
"I'm hoping for at least $100 — money for new shoes," said freshman Ryan Perez, 14, as he waited for his turn.
"I've been doing really good in class and I wanted to do well all year so I could get lots of draws," said Ryan. "This class combines something I wasn't really into with something I am," he added, eyeing his sneakers and smiling.