A brand new sixpence fresh from the Mint! How it sparkled and glittered in the dancing sunlight! Such a treasure for a small girl to possess! But then, on the other hand, what a heavy responsibility!
All day long it had been burning a hole in her pocket, and as for learning lessons, not an idea would enter her head. Everything went in at one ear and out of the other, as Miss Primmer sternly remarked when Nellie could not say her poetry. But, indeed, Nellie did try hard to learn her lessons; she squeezed her eyes together as tightly as possible, though how shutting her eyes was to prevent the lessons from coming out of her ears was not very clear.
"But I must learn them now," she sighed, "or Miss Primmer will keep me in tomorrow, and I shan't be able to go out with Nursie and Reggie to spend my sixpence. Oh dear! I wish I could learn my poetry and keep it in, I guess I'd better get a bit of cotton wool to put in my ears and then it can't come out. There, now!