In elementary school, we all had classmates from different walks of life. There were classmates who were just living a simple life, but there were also others who seemed to have it all. Having the latest gadgets, designer clothes, and expensive toys are some of the signs that your classmates are considered rich in today’s modern world. However, during the 90s and early 2000s, what makes a classmate stand out from the rest of the class are things such as a complete set of pad papers, a multifunction pencil case, a new set of school uniform every year, among many.
These classmates are what we often dub as “rich kids,” and they were a somehow a source of both envy and admiration for many of us during that time of our lives.
In the recent The Filipino Times Tanong ng Bayan, we asked this question: “Ano ang sign na ‘rich kid’ ang classmate mo noong elementary?” and hundreds of people went down memory lane as they recall their childhood. Below are the common signs that your elementary classmate is a “rich kid,” as answered by The Filipino Times readers:
Multifunction/Pop-Up Pencil Case
This is no ordinary pencil case, as it does not only hold your pens and pencils, but it can do so much more — it has buttons that when you press them, compartments pop out. It can also hold other things like scissors, sharpener, and sometimes even a calculator. Having this pencil case that looks like a “Transformer” is one indication that a student is one of the “rich kids” in class.
Complete set of pad papers
In school, we often use different sizes of paper for different purposes: 1 whole paper for a major quiz or write-ups, ½ crosswise paper for assignments, and ½ lengthwise paper and ¼ paper for short quizzes. Most students usually just buy a whole pad and just cut them into the required size if needed, but there are some that can afford to buy all the different sizes.
New set of school uniform yearly
Most of the students in the Philippines wear the same design of uniforms in their six years in elementary school. It is not a requirement to buy a new set of uniform every year, except for when they need to have a bigger size because they have grown. One sign of being a “rich kid” in class is having a new set of uniforms every school year, with it looking as bright and as fresh compared to others.
Newly-sharpened pencils with fresh erasers
Some students are privileged enough to have a number of pencils that they can use anytime. However, there are others who just stick to using one pencil, and once it’s close to being worn out, they will sharpen the other side just to have a fresh pencil that could actually write.
Box of crayons with more than 8 pieces
A regular box of crayons often has 8 colors including red, yellow, blue, green, orange, brown, violet, and black. This is what most elementary students use in their everyday art class. However, for the “rich kids,” they can buy a box of crayons that contains as many as 200 colors.
Despite the differences in our upbringings and the material things we possessed, we all shared the same classroom and learned the same lessons. However, it was somehow hard not to feel a sense of inferiority when comparing ourselves to our “rich kid” classmates. We would often wonder what it would be like to have so much wealth and privilege at such a young age.
Looking back now, we can appreciate the diversity of our classmates and the opportunities that our school provided for us to learn from one another. And now that we’re older, they have become moments we laugh about and stories we share to the world.