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Winning Winter Events - PTO Today

...There are also games, prizes, and concessions. Over the years, the event has been fine-tuned. It was originally held in December, which proved to be too crowded with other activities. Although many crafts have a holiday theme, the PTO found that January was a better time for the event. At first, the PTO sold tickets for each activity. That slowed things down, so now a single entry fee is charged instead ($5 per child or $10 per family). And the crafts themselves are a continuing work in progress. Some projects that won’t be repeated include one that spread sand everywhere and crafts that took a lot of space to make. “I sit in my living room with my kids to try everything out,” says PTO president Megan Ryan. One of the best changes was using volunteers from a local college. “That had never even occurred to us until a parent who works at the college suggested it,” Ryan says. “They were looking for a volunteer opportunity and did a great job with the kids. We just served them...

17 Things I've Learned from Veteran Room Parents - PTO Today

...  Don't stress about fancy, elaborate games and crafts. The kids are so excited at party time that even a simple game will be fun!  ~Missy Rainford 4. If you try to do everything, people will feel excluded. Eventually, no one will volunteer to help. ~Tahra Painter-Harrell 5. Always take time to listen to the kids. No matter how insignificant it may seem, you might be the only one who does.  ~Krystal Waldy 6. Don't stress. Every little thing you do is a big help. You're allowed to say no, and you don't have to be perfect. ~Julia Kloiber 7. Don't be afraid to ask the teacher! They may not want big elaborate parties or snacks. They will know what works best, so don't be afraid to ask!  ~Katy Schrodt 8. Take all the help that you can get. Be open to help, but stand your ground.   ~Liz Boshears Ready to step up? Sign up for the Leader Lowdown newsletter to get the scoop on parent involvement and more GET FREE NEWSLETTER 9. Always remember you are there to help the teacher. Don't make...

Family Fittness - PTO Today Q&A

...Answers: Community Advice ICS_Parent writes: Do a Zumba Party Event. The Zumba instructors can do it for free. All you have to do is go the Zumba website and contact a local instructor or go to your local gym and ask to speak with a Zumba instructor about doing an event at your school. Good luck! :) Report Abuse Nonsense Spam Advice from PTO Today Rose H writes: Hi Lissap2004 -- A fitness night is such a great idea and Zumba can be a blast! Also, we happen to have an article on that very topic! It will give you tips on how to organize a fitness night as well as some ideas for specific games and activities to include. There's also a link to our File Exchange (which has lots of free downloadable documents) that has some materials for Healthy Kids.  Have a great fitness night! Report Abuse Nonsense Spam Community Advice CPerry writes: Hi, I just finished organizing a Health and Fittness night for our school and here is what we have so far. We have 5 fitness stations: 1. Parachute play 2...

Pierogi Palooza - PTO Today

...Everyone gets to know each other and we have a big party at the end of it.” Miceli admits that by the time pierogi season wraps, she has had her fill of dough, potatoes, cheese, and sauerkraut “I get tired of them, but my kids don’t,” Miceli says. “People call for pierogi now throughout the year,” Miceli adds. “In special instances, we will ship out of state. Last year, someone ordered them for their wedding reception.” The best PTO advice, ideas, and inspiration delivered weekly. Don’t miss it! Plus Power Pack: Next Year’s Events The School Events You Love Most Field Day Makeover 10 Ways To Make Your “Athon” Fundraiser More Profitable and Fun 10 Easy STEM Activities for Kids To Try at Your Next Family Night Trying Out Taekwondo Comments (0) Add comment... Name (required) E-mail (required, but will not display) Send Cancel Weekly Newsletter Sensory paths. Giant Jenga. That super cool new twirly slide. Go on, make your playground awesome. Get Your Free Guide! Al...

6 Ways To Add Fun and Energy to Your PTO Events - PTO Today

...If your group prefers a broader approach, feel-good themes like beach party, superheroes, or sports teams can work for events ranging from teacher appreciation luncheons to larger outdoor events. Get Trendy (or Techy) Activities influenced by technology or pop culture can really get kids excited about an event. The Batesville (Ind.) Intermediate School had a big hit at its indoor winter carnival with an activity based on an app called Escape the Room, which required teamwork, problem-solving, and sleuthing to complete. The Lincoln Elementary PTA in Lakewood, Ohio, decided to swap out its carnival in favor of Lincoln MINES, an event with interactive workshops on the game Minecraft, online gaming, coding, and other tech topics. Combine Elements of Different Events Bringing parts of separate events together can yield some interesting and fun results. Saint Anne Elementary in Bismarck, N.D., combined a holiday event with an international art night where each grade studied a country and...

Put Parent Involvement Before Fundraising - PTO Today

...Add high-profile efforts that provide a service (speakers, baby-sitting) and build community (family nights, the annual family party spectacular), and don’t charge a dime for any of them. The vendors listed in each annual Resource Guide issue of PTO Today and in our year-round Resource Guide Online are great. They have tons of products and services to make your group and your school more successful. Amazingly, even the vendors will tell you that their products work best for PTOs and PTAs that have put fundraising and getting “stuff” for the school after building community, serving parents, and creating involvement opportunities. Which comes first in your group? The best PTO advice, ideas, and inspiration delivered weekly. Don’t miss it! What Is a Booster Club? How To Get Sponsorships for Your School Events Use Facebook Events To Promote Your School Fundraiser How To Use AmazonSmile for Your PTO or PTA 30 Ways To Boost Your School Fundraiser With Social Media Building Parent In...

9 PTO Events Families Will Love - PTO Today

...You might celebrate your school community with a party, or get kids pumped up with a family night tailored to their interests. Or you could really get things moving with a focus on fitness. Here are some ideas and tips guaranteed to make your next family event anything but ordinary. Score Big With a Tailgating Party Eastern Greenbrier Middle School PTO in Ronceverte, W.V., hosted a tailgate party before the first home football game in September. In the weeks leading up to the event, leaders secured corporate donations for much of the supplies, including buns, hot dogs, cookies, bottled water, soda, chili, and even plates. They also ordered T-shirts, spirit clappers, and beaded necklaces in the school’s colors. Parent volunteers greeted the crowd of 500 as they entered; others manned the grilling stations. Leaders set up several tents where families could purchase spirit items as well as food and beverages. A separate staging area offered tattoos and face painting for fans. Before th...

School Spirit in the Spotlight - PTO Today

...” The final show is followed by a cookies-and-lemonade cast party, open to all participants and their families. Behind the Scenes The Kennerly Variety Show can only be successful with the efforts of countless parent volunteers. “We have 32 hard-working parents who head 19 different committees, each of whom is dedicated to producing a family-valued performance,” Colona explains. The top organizational tier for the event consists of two PTP cochairs and the music teacher. A theme is chosen late in the school year, songs are selected for the grade acts during the summer, and choreography, decorating, and prop and costume design begin in autumn. Kids start practicing in January and continue until the show in early March. Other key volunteer positions include: Three coordinators per grade who help select music, develop choreography, and teach children their acts during recess. A decorating committee, which coordinates props, costumes, and lobby displays. This group is ideal for parent...

Magazines: Focus on Renewals, Discount Prices - PTO Today

...The Logan-Rogersville PTA holds a party after the sale where each grade plays games like the limbo or a bungee run. It takes two days for everybody to attend—and that means everybody, even those who didn’t sell anything. “The PTA takes a cut in profits because of that, but we’d rather it be fun for all the kids,” says magazine sales chairwoman Shannon Kennedy. On the other hand, says Rene Ulloa, a Richmond, Va.-based regional manager for Great American Opportunities, including everybody can bring complaints from families that sold subscriptions. Ulloa prefers setting the minimum participation level low enough—such as four subscriptions—that all students who put forth some effort can take part. Dos and Don’ts Don’t try to sell new magazine subscriptions first. Instead, tell students to first ask potential customers if they have any magazines in their home, advises J.C. Smith, general manager for American Publishers. Then ask if they would like to renew subscriptions f...

A Literacy Event for Halloween - PTO Today

...Your local party store will have a host of Halloween-theme trinkets such as pencils, erasers, notepads, stickers, bouncy balls, and the like. Try to avoid morbid and ghoulish items that might scare some of the younger students. Hands-on STEM and STEAM ideas for parent groups to support learning GET FREE GUIDE One week before the contest, order the gift certificates from a nearby children’s bookstore for the predetermined number of winners. You’ll probably want to have a pumpkin and a poem winner in each classroom. The other thing you have to do during this week is plan the display location and make arrangements with the school’s custodian. Choose a location that will be seen by all students, such as outside the all-purpose room, cafeteria, or gymnasium. Make sure the display tables are set up on the day before the contest. Then, during the two days of the contest (usually October 30 and 31), arrive at the school about a half-hour before the start of the school day to greet the p...