December is the perfect time of the year to let your students and staff know that you appreciate them. It is also the best time to spread holiday cheer for all to hear. I am very intentional about showing appreciation either in forms of treats or in affirmations. I know everyone has their own love language, so I try and think about a variety of ways to show the staff they are valued.
As the leader of a campus you hold the cards to creating a culture in which every individual is recognized and appreciated.
Let’s take a look at some fun ideas taking place this month on my campus.
IT’S A CHRISTMAS TREE SHOWDOWN CHALLENGE
We have the House System this year. If you are unfamiliar with it, take a look back at this post or at Ron Clark’s website. This is an activity that my staff will be participating in after school. The trees were provided plus a $50 gift card for each House (team). Each team could purchase or collect more supplies, but this is all I was able to contribute to the team building activity.
After school, the Houses will join together and decorate their trees. The trees will be on display in the school the following morning and judges will be around to award each House. Every House is a winner. The points will be given to the Houses. In doing so, the students will win as well.
It’s a tree-mendous event!
TWELVE DAYS COUNTDOWN
TO THE TUNE OF THE 12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS:
On the first day of Christmas, my principal gave to me, a Starbucks caramel coffee.
DAY 1 KRINGLE COFFEE BAR
DAY 2 CHOCOLATE MINTS
On the second day of Christmas my principal gave to me, a chocolate mint. The song says “two” but every item from this day forward is one.
Day 3 HANDWRITTEN CARDS AND PEN
On the third day of Christmas my principal gave to me, a fancy pen.
The pens will be provided along with a holiday card to read and another blank card to share. The goal is for the teachers and staff members to not only receive a card but to write a card to another colleague on campus using the pen.
Day 4 YOU MATTER ENCOURAGING WORDS
On the fourth day of Christmas my principal gave to me, four amazing words (YOU MATTER TO ME.) It can never be said enough. The words You Matter to Me should be said often and with a sincere heart. The staff will receive a reminder that morning how much they matter to me and an email with a inspirational video.
Day 5 CRANBERRY DRINKS
On the fifth day of Christmas my principal gave to me, cold drinks.
A drink cart or drink station will be provided with Oceanspray cranberry-flavored drinks. December is the perfect time of the year to enjoy all things Cranberry!
Day 6 HOLLY JOLLY SWEATER AND JEANS DAY
Day 7 BAKED COOKIES
On the seventh day of Christmas my principal gave to me, cookies baking.
Delicious cookies from the bakery are provided for the campus to enjoy. Sister2Sister Cookies is a local bakery. The cookies are made fresh daily. Cookies can be shipped to you. These cookies are like no other cookie. They are thick, soft, and preservative free. Grab some delicious cookies from the shop if you are in the East Texas area, or go online and have a box shipped to you.
Day 8 WRAPPING STATION AND BOOKS
On the eighth day of Christmas my principal gave to me, gifts-a-wrapping. This is one exciting day. Our teachers will have the opportunity to attend a Scholastic Book Fair and purchase books for the students in their class. A wrapping paper station will be provided in the conference room so the staff can wrap the books if they choose to do so.
Day 9 LOTTO TICKETS
On the ninth day of Christmas my principal gave to me, lotto tickets for scratching. I purchased the scratch off stickers from Amazon. They have been so handy and easy to use. I purchased a large set of them last year, and I still have plenty for additional projects. If you haven’t discovered these, they are a must for your Amazon list.
My tickets are for House points so teachers can help raise their team points.
Day 10 MINGLE FOR PRINGLES
On the tenth day of Christmas my principal gave to me, refreshments for mingling. Pringles™ are a fun little snack plus they a bit unexpected. In addition, Pringles™ rhyme with mingle!
JUST HEAR THOSE TEACHERS MINGLING, RING TING TINGLING TOO
Day 11 POPCORN BAR
On the eleventh day of Christmas my principal gave to me, popcorn popping. To cut costs you can pop microwave popcorn or use a popcorn machine. If you have a workable budget, gourmet popcorn in a variety of flavors are an option.
Day 12 SCHOOL WIDE MUSICAL PROGRAM
On the twelfth day of Christmas my principal gave to me, students humming.
This takes us up to the school Christmas program. We have a wonderful musical this year planned, and I know it will be enjoyed by all.
I have compiled a few things to help you with any shopping needs. If you would like to save some time, Amazon is a great way to avoid fighting the crowds. Here is a list I started for next year: