"Which one costs the most?" she asked her class.
But it is a subject many of the students at Stone Mountain Elementary School already know about.
Since February, the school in Highlands Ranch has raised more than $100,000.
Parents like John Jares went out to the community with an aggressive giving campaign.
"We're asking parents to chip in $500 per student. Certainly we would take anything, but we wanted to make sure that people understood the magnitude of the problem," he said.
The problem is a $31 million budget deficit within Douglas County Schools. That huge number means budget cuts and the elimination of 250 teaching positions.
In response, many schools have joined with the Douglas County Educational Foundation to create Save Our Schools, which began last week.
The website seeks donations from around the country and allows people to donate to certain schools.
"They had a very aggressive parent group that went after the community and said, 'Hey, here's our deficit, here's what we need to do.' And sent out some great information and all of a sudden it just started coming in, but that's really a reflection of Douglas County," Sean McGraw with the Douglas County Educational Foundation said.
"It was a lot of work," Jares said. "I thought it was an uphill battle when we first started."
It seems it is a battle the school is winning. The community put together a silent auction and casino night that raised $45,000.
There were also other traditional fundraisers.
"As you can see, it's crazy hair today. Any child or person who wanted to participate paid a dollar," O'Doughterty said.
Each class at Stone Mountain set a goal. Their efforts have added up to $100,000. That money has saved three teaching jobs and possibly some educational assistants.
"It means the parents are completely in tune with what we're trying to do in our school," O'Dougherty said.
"Right now, we're trying to do a little bit more because we have to do it with a lot less," McGraw said. "By no means are we asking our parent groups to make up this budget deficit... but the key to this is that this is parent driven. This is not a Douglas County School District initiative saying: families, you need to step it up."
"The number one thing was class size," O'Dougherty said. "So that I'm able to get to each one of these children, smaller class sizes makes a difference."
McGraw says this type of thing is happening across the U.S.
"We have some schools that will raise $30,000 selling cookie dough. We'll have another school make $30,000 jumping rope," he said.
"Certainly everybody who contributed this year understands that this problem will not be solved overnight," Jares said. "Parents will say, 'You know what? I'm glad I wrote that check because it made a big difference.'"
O'Dougherty likes the feeling that someone has her back.
"It hasn't surprised me as much as what I know about this community," she said.
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