RICHMOND, Va., Nov. 28 (UPI) -- Back in 1944, all a kid wanted for Christmas -- or so the song went -- was his two front teeth. Today, a poll reveals, kids' holiday aspirations are loftier.
The global survey conducted by ChildFund Alliance in Richmond, Va., and released Monday found 50 percent of children in developing nations said if it was within their power they would improve their nation's schools. In the United States, 22.4 percent said they would help the homeless and 18.2 percent said improve schools.
A significant portion of children in developing nations (43.1 percent) said they would improve their country's safety and security, primarily by getting criminals off the streets. A third of American children said they would create "safe places" for kids.
Children in developing countries also have a more altruistic bent when it comes to career choices, with becoming a teacher the top choice of 22 percent of adolescents. In the United States, the No. 1 career aspiration is professional athlete, the survey found.
The organization's second annual "Small Voices, Big Dreams" poll surveyed 5,100 children ages 10 to 12 in 44 countries in the Americas, Africa and Asia in two surveys conducted from July to September. The margin of error is plus or minus 1.4 percentage points.