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Leprechaun luck: North Elementary kindergartners enjoy St. Patrick’s Day activities

by CASEY MCCARTHY
Staff Writer | March 18, 2021 1:00 AM

Excitement is an understatement for the kindergartners celebrating St. Patrick’s Day Wednesday at North Elementary School in Moses Lake.

Students capped off two weeks of trying to catch a leprechaun causing mischief in their classrooms with a day filled with holiday-themed activities. Teacher Candace Pitts’ students had a day of detective work as they tried to solve some of the clues left behind at the “crime scene.”

She said students have been really excited every day to see what hijinks the leprechaun had done, finding the biggest mess of all on Wednesday.

“It took like 30 minutes just to get them to focus, and just to see if their trap actually worked,” Pitts said. “Some of them noticed a ladder was broken on one of them, some gold was missing from another. And then, what did he mess up today because he’s been messing something up every day.”

Students brought their leprechaun traps they made at home Tuesday to try and catch the culprit. Pitts said the leprechaun traps were a project she gave her class a few weeks ago, something the kids could build with their family. Pitts said the kids would have some more fun activities Wednesday afternoon, including taking their pictures, which would make them look like leprechauns.

Pitts said tomorrow might be a little bit of a disappointment because she doubts the leprechaun will make another appearance after St. Patrick’s Day.

Wednesday started with a fun science project, dissolving vinegar into a “rock” made of baking soda and food coloring only to discover a piece of gold inside.

“Wow, it’s gold!” “Real leprechaun money!” The wows were quickly replaced with “eww” and “yucky” as the smell from the vinegar hit their nostrils.

Kindergartners gave their best guesses on how much their gold coin was worth, with estimates from $50 to “10 million hundred.”

In Carina Cruz’s classroom next door, students had a lot of the same activities, with leprechaun traps set up across the room. Students quickly announced the mischievous leprechaun had even turned the water in their bathroom toilet green.

Syrin Wilson, in Cruz’s class, said she built her trap at home and explained how the leprechaun would get trapped.

“I had a coin from home so I stuck it in my trap and when he saw the trap, he’ll climb up the ladder and he’ll fall in and he’ll get stuck,” Wilson said.

Wilson pointed out the coin she brought from home wasn’t really gold, but the one she got in class on Wednesday was “real gold.”

Wilson pointed out all of the chocolates she got from the leprechaun and admitted she’d already eaten some of them. While she said they didn’t catch the leprechaun, she’s not so sure he wasn’t still hanging around.

“I think he’s still hiding around the room. I think he’s hiding in that mailbox,” Wilson said.

Unfortunately, the mailbox did not contain the pesky leprechaun.

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Casey McCarthy/Columbia Basin Herald

Noah Valencia watches his paper tub as vinegar reacts with the baking soda rock on his desk, revealing a gold coin as the kindergarten class at North Elementary School in Moses Lake celebrated St. Patrick's Day on Wednesday.

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Casey McCarthy/Columbia Basin Herald

Left to right, Mariana Santoya and Zahviar Torres show off their gold coins and chocolates left by the leprechaun that's been wreaking havoc in their kindergarten classroom at North Elementary School in Moses Lake the last few weeks.

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Casey McCarthy/Columbia Basin Herald

Araceli Gentry's leprechaun trap sits on her desk in her kindergarten classroom at North Elementary School in Moses Lake on Wednesday morning.

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Casey McCarthy/Columbia Basin Herald

Asher Dimchuk shows off his new gold coin freshly dissolved from the baking soda rock in Candace Pitts' kindergarten classroom at North Elementary School in Moses Lake on Tuesday.

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Casey McCarthy/Columbia Basin Herald

Kindergartener Syrin Wilson's leprechaun trap sits on the floor of her classroom at North Elementary School in Moses Lake on Wednesday morning.