What gifts do the children receive at ages 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

It is first important to note that although the children all receive their "gifts" at the same ceremony each year, they are all born throughout the year and thus have different birthdays. However, because of Sameness, no one's day is celebrated individually and instead, everyone of one yearly age is celebrated together. Here are the gifts for each age:

1: Children who have turned 1 in the previous year are given a name and a family.

2: Jonas simply notes that this ceremony is "boring," and no significant milestones or gifts are noted.

3: Although not part of the ceremony per se, this is the age at which children are required to begin sharing dreams and being held responsible for the correct use of language.

4: Children receive a jacket that buttons down the back, forcing them to help each other and learn interdependence.

5-6: Nothing significant happens. It seems that the jackets are exchanged for larger ones: "Fours, Fives, and Sixes all wore jackets that fastened down the back so that they would have to help each other dress and would learn interdependence." (Chapter 6)

7: Children receive a front-buttoning jacket to indicate a newfound independence.

8: Children are given a jacket with smaller buttons and pockets, indicating they can keep up with their own small, personal belongings. They also begin volunteer hours at this age.

9: Girls remove their hair ribbons. Everyone receives a bike.

10: Everyone receives a haircut. Girls have their braids cut off and boys' hair is cut short enough to expose their ears.

11: Everyone is given new clothing, including new undergarments for females and longer pants for boys with a special pocket for the calculator they will need at the next school year.

12: The final ceremony, this is the one where each child receives his or her job assignment. A Committee studies each child's interests and talents and then makes a job assignment. The child will spend the next few years studying and specifically training for this career.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
Soaring plane image

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial