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10 Great Ways To Celebrate the End of the School Year - PTO Today

10 Great Ways To Celebrate the End of the School Year - PTO Today COVID-19 Resources for PTOs and Parents Events & Programs Archive Spring and Summer Planning Archive 10 Great Ways To Celebrate the End of the School Year Wrap up the school year with a graduation party, a volunteer appreciation luncheon, or another fun event. by Poornima Apte 05/09/2016 Bowling Party Line up the bowling pins and let down the gutter guards. Plan a fun evening out at the local bowling alley to celebrate the successful wrap of another school year. Make sure to reserve plenty of lanes and give the business enough time to prepare, especially if your last day falls on a weekend. While basic vending machines are a part of most establishments, arrange for pizza delivery as a way to make the event more festive, or if it’s being held around a meal time. quick way of making an extra buck from the event. If you don’t have a bowling alley in your area, consider a gathering at a laser tag facility, a mini-golf co...

Spring Family Event Ideas - PTO Today

...Last year we had a roller-skating party. We rented out a rink for the evening. The only charge to participants was for their skates. It was a big success." This year the group has planned a sock hop at the school. They will bring in a radio station DJ "who does all the work." Everyone comes dressed to look like a character out of Happy Days . The DJ teaches dances from the '50s and runs oldies dance contests. They even set up an old-fashioned soda counter where they serve sundaes and cherry cokes and hot dogs. The big kids help the little kids, and the parents and teachers dance, too. The kids especially love dancing with their teachers. Highlight of the Year "It's the one event most people come out and support," says Rose Acerra, parents' organization board member at the Ocean Township Elementary School in Oakhurst, N.J., of her school's spring carnival. "People we don't see all year long come to our carnival." The carnival is a major fundraiser for the group, and they work hard duri...

Auction "Pros" Raise Big Dollars - PTO Today

...Just last year, the PTA married a two-week online auction with an upscale auction party to net $268,000. The K-4, 650-student school found it needed a way to raise money after the Texas Legislature passed a “Robin Hood” school funding law in 1993. The law requires affluent school districts to share property tax revenues with less wealthy districts. To help compensate for funds that the school district gives up, the Bradfield PTA decided to hold an auction that could directly benefit the school. The PTA taps into parent contacts and local businesses to obtain auction items and in-kind donations. Some of the hottest items are trips, playhouses, and experiences such as ice-cream socials. Classroom creations and lower-priced items are usually reserved for the silent auction. Parents put some ingenuity into the auction by creating an online category called “Teacher Treasures,” which brought in more than $17,000. “Kids love to spend time with teachers and staff outside the classro...

A Patriotic Celebration - PTO Today

A Patriotic Celebration - PTO Today COVID-19 Resources for PTOs and Parents Events & Programs Archive A Patriotic Celebration LORI SNYDER/UNIFIED PHOTOGRAPHY A Michigan school community hosts an end-of-the-year party with a healthy dose of red, white, and blue. by Rose Hamilton 02/27/2018 As a wrap-up to the school year, the Mount Clemens (Mich.) Montessori Academy Parent Guild hosts a patriotic party that brings together the community to enjoy student performances, food, games, and friendly competitions. Each year, the event is held after school on a weekday around Memorial Day. The Red, White, and Blue Concert is the highlight of the event, which is open to MCMA families as well as the general community. Students sing patriotic standards such as “Yankee Doodle” and “You’re a Grand Old Flag.” The school’s music teacher directs the performance, and each grade performs one number. This tribute has become a beloved tradition at the school. It honors veterans and active milita...

Classic School Carnival Activities - PTO Today

Classic School Carnival Activities - PTO Today COVID-19 Resources for PTOs and Parents Carnivals & Fairs Archive Classic School Carnival Activities Need ideas for your school carnival? Choose from this collection of crowd-pleasing games and activities. by Patti Ghezzi 04/16/2019 Activities that actively engage kids are the heart of a school carnival or festival. These are the tried-and-true carnival games and activities that schools rely on year after year. School Carnival Games With Prizes Cakewalk: This is an easy, beloved activity that utilizes volunteers and often works as a lucrative fundraiser. Parents make or buy single-serving sweet treats such as cupcakes or bags of cookies. With music playing, kids walk around a course marked with numbers, stars, or pictures. The person standing on a marked spot when the music stops gets a prize. If some volunteers donate more elaborate cakes, designate a special picture as the spot that gets to claim the bigger prize. Ring toss: There are ma...

22 Fun Family Night Ideas - PTO Today

...Billed as a Get Connected “block party” , the event provided imaginative play for all with minimal time commitment from parents. 6. Rockin’ Through the Ages AGCuesta/Shutterstock If you envision a dance party that gets everyone out on the dance floor, have the DJ spin tunes from different eras. A dance party at Vine Hill Elementary in Scotts Valley, Calif., included music from the ’50s through the present day. Parents and students wore costumes from their favorite decades. Work with the DJ to identify the songs guaranteed to get everybody grooving. Or let parents and kids make requests in advance of the event. 7. Count Day Attendance on Oct. 1 determines funding in Colorado schools. At Rocky Mountain Classical Academy in Colorado Springs, the parent group turned Count Day into a fun day no student would want to miss. Teachers wore silly outfits and kids wore their pajamas. Much of the day was spent reading for pleasure. Among the highlights, students watched their teachers com...

Kids Are (Still) Key to Fundraising - PTO Today

...Students could also earn a chance to play field games like Booger Wars (dodgeball with bean bags). “They went crazy when they saw that video,” says PTO president Caressa Baker. “I heard students saying, ‘I want to go home and sell so I can go to the truck.’” To engage students at a rally, Nick Kukta, vice president of fundraising company Great Western Reserve, suggests asking questions to make sure they’re paying attention and explaining how much of the money raised goes back to benefit them directly. Announcements about prizes are more effective when made near the end of a rally. “Wait until the last five to seven minutes to cover all the prizes so they leave excited,” Kukta says. Build Momentum It’s important to let parents know why you’re fundraising. If you have some specific programs or events you’ll fund or something that you’ll purchase for the school, communicate that to parents. Those kinds of specifics are much more motivating than communicating the...

19 PTO Hacks You’ll Want To Try - PTO Today

...DIY Ping-Pong Ball Toss Who said carnival games have to be costly? PTO president Kate Cancelliere created this simple (and cheap!) ping-pong ball toss game for the spring carnival at St. Kateri Tekakwitha Parish School in Niskayuna, N.Y. She used a large piece of cardboard, 12 plastic cups in four colors, and a package of ping-pong balls. Cancelliere scored each cup depending on its color—one point for orange, five points for blue, and so on. More school carnival game ideas with a twist Easy-To-Squeeze Ice Cream Toppings Keeping ice cream from melting prematurely isn’t the only challenge for organizers at ice cream socials—hot fudge that’s not so hot can be a problem, too. Here’s a simple way to keep sauces hot, or pleasingly warm: Fill squeeze bottles with heated sauces and keep them in a water-filled slow cooker that’s set on warm. Digital citizenship FTW! Teach kids and parents what really matters for online safety DOWNLOAD FREE PROGRAM Storage Bin Labels That Last Keep...

6 Outdoor Events for Spring - PTO Today

...Garden Planting Party Many schools have incorporated a garden into the curriculum. A school garden can provide plenty of teaching opportunities as well as help stress the importance of nutrition and healthier food choices. W.G. Pearson Middle School in Durham, N.C., holds a planting party to kick off the growing season. Families plant vegetables and herbs in the garden’s raised beds. At the Colonial School District in Plymouth Meeting, Pa., students and parents join with school staffers, board of education members, and the local community to plant everything from tomatoes to poblano peppers to sage in the district’s garden. Grab your boots, roll up your sleeves, and plan a planting party at your school. Get creative by planning an Alphabet Garden—a vegetable garden organized by letter—or a book garden featuring flowers that play a prominent role in children’s literature. Remind parents that kids are going to get dirty so they shouldn’t wear their best clothes. Have plenty...

Carnival Success Story - PTO Today

...Before theme parks, this was the only way for kids to enjoy the thrill of carnival rides and the excitement of games, flashing lights, and a little independence from their parents. At St. Philip the Apostle School in Pasadena, Calif., a similar event comes to life each fall. Take away the rides and focus on stage talent, and it's just the right mix for a great family night out and a phenomenal fundraiser. Safe, Simple, and Fun Host a talent show featuring the likes of a Lucille Ball impersonator, an American Idol contestant, and a chimp used in movies. Add a healthy dose of musical acts, a haunted house, games, and party food. That's what St. Philip's fall festival is all about. "We work hard to keep the festival interesting," says Scott Dopke, festival chairman. "Over the years, we've tried different games, such as a pingpong tournament, soccer-kicking contest, bingo, and karaoke. We've rented inflatables—moonwalk, giant slide, mountain climb, and bungee jump—to see what the kids...

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