Any ideas how an elementary school can celebrate it's 60th anniversary for under $1500?
By V.Sal from San Diego, CA
Is this for a large event for parents or just for the kids & staff? How about dressing like they did the year the school opened?? Have the kids put out a newspaper for that time era up until now. Learn some songs from that era and put on a program singing those songs, display old photos, find people who went to school there and have them come talk about what it was like throughout the years. Do something for every 5 or 10 years leading up to today.
What we have done at our school for several large celebrations was to create a giant cake. We have people donate a cake, chocolate or white, 9X12, (depends on how big you want this cake, one per family, one per staff member, one per kid in the grade 5 class. You don't say how big your school is or how many people you want to feed) We have a volunteer mom or two. Someone who has some experience in cake decorating, and there is always someone, ice and decorate the cake. We purchase a pail or two of icing from the local bakery. This feeds the kids and public in a festive manner, and is quite fun. The little kids are enthralled with the giant cake, especially if it covers the table top. We take pictures with the cake, if we have time -- each grade, or a class rep, or whatever.
After you have the program, whatever you decide to do, then you get to eat the cake. Makes a nice, and inexpensive finale. Serve iced tea and coffee or maybe some sort of koolaid for the kids.
Having such a cake, and a program put on by the children and former students and teachers is very inexpensive.
Another thing we have done is make up time capsules to be opened in 25 years, or when the kids leave the school, or? If you are in a smaller town, perhaps you can send them to the local high school and these can be opened when they graduate. Pick something that will work for your situation. Each class can make up a time capsule,putting in samples of work, pictures of whatever, maybe filling out a form with questions like popular shows, music, pastimes, fashion, etc. Kids in grade 5 and up could make up "Remember when..." letters to themselves in the future. You could make video tapes of the kids working, putting on a program, telling about themselves; however you want to do this. (Do remember that however you are recording this, you want to be able to view it in the future, so if the time capsule is going too far in the future, you might have to put the player in the capsule too!)
Another thing I have done is make a piece of art work to commemorate the day. I had each child in the art class (so one class picks this as a project; Say grade 8) make a 6x6 inch tile illustrating something about the school. My kids made little tiles with the lockers, the classroom turtle, a couple of tiles representing academics, with numbers and ABC;s. Tiles representing the sports kids played, computers, the playground, etc. We brainstormed ideas, and kids each picked a different idea to illustrate. We fired these, glazed in a background color, and painted them with acrylic paints. Sprayed with a gloss finish. We cemented these onto a wooden board, framed it up, and grouted between the tiles.
We have done this twice in the school. Once the piece was about 2 feet by 3 feet, and the first time it was about 3x5. We unveiled the artwork at our program, and then had it hung in the school. I made a little plaque that listed the class and the anniversary, and each kid carved his name on the tile that he made. This is also not that expensive, as most of it comes out of the regular art budget, and the extra cost is the plywood and wood used for the framing. I had the shop teacher build the frame.
If you have someone who is a ceramic artist in the community, they could do this on an even more elaborate scale. I have seen the tiles, made smaller to start, made into a gigantic ceramic mural placed over the main entrance to the school. Everyone in the school and in the community made a tile. They had a day for tile making, and then the artist finished up the piece, and then had an unveiling party.
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