“Find It” for Charity Challenge – family time pays

Have you ever found a penny on the ground and thought twice about picking it up? It’s one measly cent and weren’t we going to get rid of the penny anyway? We all know once that copper coin lands in our pocket, it’s destined to be tossed in the junk drawer or left in your pocket only to be heard clanging in the washer or dryer eventually getting lodged in that covert appliance crevice. Here we go again youtube: “How to dislodge coins from my washing machine.”

This was my thought process prior to 2010.


On December 9, 2009, after finding $0.11 while out running, I had an idea. Why not save every coin I find for one full year? Better yet, why not get my wife and three children in on the action?


So my wife pulled out a mason jar and slapped a sticker with the words FOUND MONEY on its side. I dropped the dime and penny into the jar and as they jingled to the bottom, our new tradition was underway. We agreed to collect and save all the money we found for one full year, and count our 365 day total on December 8, 2011. Suddenly the once burdensome penny had a whole new meaning, to all of us.

For organization’s sake, we decided to keep an old Sucrets tin in each of the cars and if we found any money while running errands, we placed it in the tin. Otherwise, every cent found while running, at school, under vending machines (our kids use their Ninja Warrior skills to hunt down those coins) or anywhere was saved in our found money jar at home.


On December 8, 2010, we sat down around our kitchen table and sorted the money. Our kids worked together by grouping and stacking the coins and calculated our first year total as a modest $7.25. 


“What should we do with the money?”

We were staring at our accomplishment when my daughter asked, “What should we do with the money?” As a team, we decided that each year we would donate the money to a charity of our choice. My wife suggested matching the total. Therefore, our first-year total of $7.25 would increase to $14.50.

December 8 is our “FOUND MONEY DAY.”

December 8 has become a family holiday called “Found Money Day”. This is the day we drape newspaper over our enamel kitchen table and count the money found throughout the year. We then take time to discuss and decide which charity will receive our donation. This year we gave to Sheltering Grace Ministries.

It’s been 10 years since we began the Find It for Charity Challenge, and it still offers the same excitement for each one of us as it did in the beginning. Whether we find a penny or a five-dollar bill, we can’t wait to drop it into the tin or the “Found Money” jar.

Throughout the decade, we’ve averaged around $18.00 per year with our lowest total coming in at $7.25 in 2010. This year was incredible. We reached our record high with a whopping $55.00!


*For an added challenge, each family member guesses the annual total prior to counting the money. Each guess is written down and placed into the empty found money jar. Once the total is revealed, we see who was closest to the total. The winner has bragging rights for the year.

More importantly, “Found Money Day” prompts all of us to take a break from studying, working and planning and FINALLY stop and take a moment to be together. We recall our most memorable where we found it stories – (one year during spring break at Orange Beach, our son found $15.00(!) in a parking lot during a rainstorm) and decide where to donate the money.

Our Find it for Charity Challenge continues to be a daily reminder of how coins inadvertently dropped by one person can literally pay it forward for another. Join us in our challenge, and start saving for others today. Note: remember to watch for traffic!

Here’s how you can take part in the Find it for Charity Challenge:

  1. Keep a container (we use old Sucrets tins) in your cars along with hand sanitizer.
  2. If you find any money while running errands, place it in the tin of your choice.
  3. Designate one container at your home as the found money jar.
  4. Place every cent found while running, at school, or anywhere into the found money jar. 
  5. Save all found treasures for one year (you’ll be amazed at what you find).
  6. For an added challenge, have each family member guess the year’s total prior to counting the money.
  7. As a family, decide where you will donate the money.
  8. Donate.
  9. Celebrate the joy of sharing.
  10. Repeat.

Remember, we can all help each other in small ways, even if it’s just one penny at a time.

Roll in the New Year – 2020 Fitness Challenge

This January, it’s time to get back to some basic movements using a pair of dice. The Roll in the New Year 2020 fitness challenge consists of exercises ranging from strengthening the upper and lower body to increasing aerobic endurance.

Each day, roll two dice and add the numbers together. The sum of the dice determines the exercise movement. Your workout should consist of at least 10 rolls of the dice. However, if you’re feeling extra motivated, especially as you roll into late January, roll a few extra times to intensify your workout!

Notice both the fitness challenge document and the calendar have QR codes. Simply SCAN or CLICK the code below to watch a video of each exercise.

qr-code - Roll in the New Year
Scan or click to see a video of each exercise

Click Roll in the New Year 2020 for an editable copy of the January fitness challenge.

Click Roll in the New Year 2020 PDF for a PDF version of the January Fitness Challenge. Use this version if the editable version’s format is incompatible.

Click Roll in the New Year 2020 Certificate Final for a copy of the Roll in the New Year Award Certificate.




Special thanks to Jedd Austin (@jeddaustin) for his video and editing skills. thestrongcommunity.com

Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/justybubpe.

Check out my Facebook group called Keeping Kids in Motion!

Subscribe to my Youtube Channel for over 100 useful games for physical education!

December’s “PLAY IT UP FOR THE HOLIDAYS!” Fitness Challenge

The December PLAY it up for the HOLIDAYS challenge stresses the significance of good old-fashioned PLAY. As Albert Einstein famously stated, “Play is the highest form of research.” It is my belief that play is the ultimate means of physical, social, and emotional exercise for children.


Fred Rogers, of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, famously stated, “Play is the work of childhood.”


I couldn’t agree more. Play allows children to use their creativity while developing their imagination, dexterity, and physical, cognitive, and emotional strength. Through play, children learn at a very early age to engage and interact in the world around them. Play is a cherished part of childhood. By finding the right balance between work and play, children will grow up happier, well adjusted, and more prepared to conquer the world.


  1. Each day, students PLAY it up indoors or outdoors.
  2. Use the indoor or outdoor activities listed or create your own fitness fun.
  3. Participate in one or more activities for at least one hour throughout the day.
  4. Write down your chosen activities on the calendar provided!

At the end of the month, students add up the total number of days completed, have their parents sign the bottom of the sheet, then return it to a PE teacher. Students completing at least 10 days will receive an award certificate and toe token.

My team and I literally PREACH the importance of PLAY!

Finally, it is imperative that parents and teachers stress the importance of play. I regularly have conversations with my students regarding play as their number one mode of exercise.

For an editable copy of the December challenge, click December 2019 Challenge.

For a PDF copy of the December challenge (in case the font does not work on the editable version), click December 2019 Challenge PDF.

For a copy of the Award Certificate, click Play it up Certificate.

Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/justybubpe.

Check out my Facebook group called Keeping Kids in Motion!

Subscribe to my Youtube Channel for over 100 useful games for physical education!

%d bloggers like this: