2023 Go Gold Day Essay Winners

Essay Contest

In 2023, we launched our pilot essay contest at our flagship school, Sarasota’s Southside Elementary School. The theme for 2023 was “Magic,” and students were asked to write poems or essays concocting magic potions, or telling stories about magic lab coats, with childhood cancer in mind. We received thirty-five outstanding pieces from students in third through fifth grades! While it was extremely difficult to choose the winners, it was the empathy that shined through these five entries that helped them win the GOLD. Enjoy!

“Magic Potion”

There is no cure for cancer YET but I seek to change just that.

A magic remedy sure will do! The ingredients are listed here:

A bottle of love, life needs that

A full cup of hope and a splash of humor

I could’ve made this recipe sooner! 

A tablespoon of joy, happiness too!

I love feeling happy, how about you?

Pour in as much health as needed

And the recipe will be completed!

If you followed the steps accurately, 

With the snap of your fingers, you will be free

From this horrid cancer that’s in our world.

I hope now all people will see

That the magic of cancer lies not in its power

But in the way we fight and never cower.

We mix our potion with love, hope, and cheer 

And face this disease without any fear!

For though there is no cure yet to be found

Our spirit and willpower know no bound.

So let us continue to mix and brew

Our magic potion until cancer is through.

~Lucy Mangum, 5th Grade

“Magic Cure”

One very sunny day, 

I had an idea that paved my way. 

What if I could produce a cure, 

Which would make all the kids

Enjoy their life and not endure!

A pinch of joy, 

A pinch of glee, 

A pinch of a happy dream.

But don’t forget a cup of hope!

If the cure was really that easy, 

It would make cancer feel all queasy. 

If the cure is worth fighting for,

Why don’t you help out some more?

~Rylee Norman, 5th Grade

Add a drop of kindness,

A drop of love,

And soon the magic potion will be done!

Don’t forget a little glitter,

So your true self will really shimmer!

It can be tough to overcome hardships,

But take this potion and bad things will vanish.

Make sure to measure with bravery and more,

And soon good things will be at your door.

So say GO GOLD and believe in yourself!

Don’t worry this potion will help! 

~Emma Mashke, 4th Grade

“The Magic Coat”

Today I got a magic lab coat, I put it on and I got scientific powers! I could see cancer glowing in a child’s body and I could shrink and go inside bodies! First, I saw the cancer glowing in a 3-year-old girl named Libby. I quickly turned into a pediatric cancer doctor and rushed to my lab / hospital, shrank to go in her body, and fought the disease with a sword. I got a few scratches but saved her! All thanks to magic, and magic is real! 

~Sadie Seidensticker, 3rd Grade

“Go Gold” 

If I had a magical coat that gave me super scientific powers, I’ll help the mission to get a cure for cancer. if it doesn’t work, I will try again until I finally get it. So I’m not going to stop until cancer will just leave kids alone. If I was to be the richest person in the world, I would instead of being greedy, I will donate so much money to Go Gold. Like “Just Do It.” You can make a difference. The kids that have cancer are fighting for their lives. So please help them win between the battle of cancer. That’s what I would do if I had a magical lab coat.

~Theo Norwood, 4th Grade