Because local families had "a Coke and a smile," teachers will be able to capture students' smiles on camera.
Maxwell Elementary School earned a GE digital camera through the My Coke Rewards program so teachers can photograph special events, projects and students' achievements.
"We were told the staff needed a new camera, so that's what we used it for," said Judith Hodges, a parent volunteer who organizes fundraising and recycling at the school. "And we also were able to get each child school supplies to start the school year through Coke, so we're really big on those because they give us school supplies."
Ms. Hodges said they were able to give pencils, erasers and glue sticks to every classroom for each child at the beginning of the school year.
My Coke Rewards allows people in the community to donate their points located on caps and boxes of Coke products to local schools, which can be turned into classroom supplies, playground and athletic equipment and books, according to the Coke website. Other McDuffie County schools registered with the program on the website are Norris and Thomson Elementary schools.
Through the Campbell's Labels For Education program, Maxwell Elementary also received six cameras for students to use on field trips.
"They're small cameras, so they're really good for the little hands of our age group," Ms. Hodges said.
"And they're in a nice, little carrying case."
The Campbell's program includes labels or UPC's from Campbells, Peppridge Farms, Franco-American, Prego, V8, Swanson and Bic products.
In addition to Maxwell Elementary, local participating schools include: Dearing Elementary, Norris Elementary, Thomson Elementary, CSRA Project Head Start (on Martin Luther King, Jr. St.) and M.E. Freeman Elementary in Warrenton. Local participating child care centers include: Small World, Li'l Folks, Little Rascals and Owl's.
Ms. Hodges said Maxwell Elementary earned $9,300 last year through the Coke and Campbell's programs, through TerraCycle recycling and by selling non-school lunches to teachers on Fridays.
"All this goes back into the school by buying supplies for the kids," Ms. Hodges said.
For more information on any of the programs that pay money to schools, visit www.terracycle.net, www.labelsforeducation.com, or www.mycokerewards.com.