WASHING DISHES for about 200 people is more exciting than washing dishes for two or three! You get to use lots of equipment, including a spraying hose and a big dishwasher — you just insert your load and hear a hiss and the machine takes it in and goes to work.
I’ve done this job twice. I look forward to doing it again, even thoughI have to give up a recess to do it. Here’s how it works:
First the two kids go down to the cafeteria at 11:15 a.m. and wash their hands. Next they volunteer to ether put away or dry the dishes.
Once that is decided, they wait for people to clear their lunches and Cafeteria Manager Sonya Hamdan or Roxanne Shearer will put the dishes in a huge washing machine to wash the dishes.
If they put in silverware, the kid putting dishes away gives them back and puts them in once more. When silverware is washed twice, the “put awayer” puts them on a table and the dryer probably dries them. That process goes on and on until every class, from pre-K to 6, is dismissed by 12:30 p.m.
The dishwasher is quite loud when the dishes go in.
You have to wear gloves and you cannot touch any part of your face during your job.
According to Mrs. Hamdan the work is also very important:
“We love having them here, especially as there are only two of us. The kids do a great job.”
Sometimes, she added, “helpers come back years later, even after they graduate, and say they remember this as a fun time, and that they miss it. That can bring a tear to my eye,” she told the Flow.
After everything, on my way back to class, I tend to feel proud and my fingers feel wet and pruny.
— Bennett Snyder
Students help our community in ways large and small. Let us hear how your student helps or might like to. And check out Diana Yaseen’s related story on the school breakfast and lunch program.