The end of the school year is an exciting time full of anticipation and summer dreamin’! But it can also be a bit overwhelming: the parties, field days, field trips, testing, book fairs, carnivals etc. But one thing that adds to the crazy end-of-the-school-year rush that I love is Staff and Teacher Appreciation Week! My kids are blessed to attend schools that have, what I believe to be, some of the best people working with them. Most are overworked and underpaid (that’s a discussion for another time!) but all have an evident love of children hence why they do what they do!
This year I headed up the Staff Appreciation Committee on our PTO. It was a great job! Who wouldn’t want to spread the love all year long?! I knew I wanted this week long celebration of the staff and teachers to be something special; something creative, different and inspiring that involved the students along with their families. So I did what any PTO mom these days would do…I started “Pinteresting” (is that a word? If not, it should be!). And as always, “she” (my friend Pinterest) didn’t disappoint!
Our week was an UP theme. Each day was given a cute UP saying that inspired the activities of the day. I figured pictures would do the week more justice than just me writing. So I have included one from each day and you can view the rest on our Pinterest board here. I also must say that I didn’t come up with this on my own…I was inspired by (and am extremely thankful for) the creativity over at Raising Lemons. Her UP themed week can be found here: http://www.raisinglemons.com/holidays/teacher-appreciation-week-2/. I tweaked her ideas to better suit our schools’ needs and budget. But was so thankful to have found and have been inspired by her!
To kick off the week a group gathered Sunday night to decorate the sidewalks around the school. We also posted a bulletin board to remind kids and staff/teachers of the week’s upcoming activities. Prior to I sent home a letter to the families and gave a note to all the staff and teachers to let them know what to expect each day.
Monday….FUEL UP DAY – Kids were encouraged to dress up in exercise/PE clothes and to bring in a healthy snack to help their teacher FUEL UP! The PTO also provided some healthy snacks in the staff lounge for them to snack on along with a granola bar in their mailboxes with a sticker that read “Thanks for FUELING our kids UP with knowledge!”
Tuesday…WAKE UP DAY – Kids wore their pajamas this day and the staff and teachers were treated to a breakfast cart that stopped by their offices and rooms that morning. Kids filled out “rays” noting their favorite thing about their teacher, or just simply saying thank you.
Wednesday…GIDDY UP DAY – Kids dressed like cowboys and cowgirls this day and “rounded up” school supplies for their teachers. The PTO offered a BBQ themed lunch with donated salad and breadsticks from Olive Garden.
Thursday…SURF’S UP DAY – Kids wore beach wear and staff and teachers were treated to an ice cream bar from the PTO. The staff and teachers also received a flower lei in their mailboxes to get them in the SURF’S UP mood!
Friday…DRESS UP DAY – Kids dressed in their best this day to show respect for our awesome staff and teachers. The PTO provided vases to each of the teachers and kids were invited to bring in a flower of any kind (real, artificial, paper, etc.) to their teacher. The staff and teachers were treated to a dessert bar at lunch complete with 7-UP served in plastic champagne glasses (because everything is fancier in champagne glasses)! We also had magnets made up of the “7-UPs of Working With Children” to pass out to the staff and teachers.
It was an awesomely exhausting week worth every ounce of effort put into it. The thanks my team received made us sure the staff and teachers were soaking up all the LOVE we were sending their way. I was in a post Staff/Teacher Appreciation week fog for a few days following the last festivity…but I’m happy to say, I have fully recovered and am already planning for next year 😉 And below is a sneak peak at the end of the year gift that will be gracing staff and teacher mailboxes tomorrow. ORANGE you glad it’s almost summer???!!!