Spring School Spirit

When it comes to school spirit events, it is hard to not think of homecoming. Usually revolving around a tradition of football rivalries, this almost universally celebrated event captures the spirit of a school, and the community that supports it. The spring season inspires thoughts of test taking, prom and graduation, all big events, but none truly motivates school spirit for the students as a whole. Deciding to hold a spring spirit event can be a big step for a school, but it can return excitement and enthusiasm for a broader range of activities. If done right, this event can raise awareness of spring sports, inspire pride and involve the community even more in the success of the school.

While there may not be a premier football game during the spring season, there may be a tournament for one of the spring sports that may provide the anchor for the spring spirit event. Identifying a baseball, lacrosse or soccer event that would serve as a feature is an important first step. Bracketing the sport aspect with a series of in school activities involves the entire school enrollment. A spring themed pep rally, activities such as picture scavenger hunts, team obstacle courses and talent competitions will broaden the involvement to students who may not be inspired by athletic teams. A message of school success can be delivered to the students via assemblies, introduction speeches and class discussions. Pride can be translated into achieving academic excellence, connecting the enthusiasm of striving to be the best in extracurricular activities to doing well in the classroom.

The school activities that comprise the spring pride week can be brought to a new level of interest with themed merchandise. At the most basic level, students can be inspired to wear spirit apparel, emblazoned with the mascot of the school. Reinforcement of participation can be in the form of spirit points that can be exchanged for leverage in the competitive activities that make up the week. Attributing a certain amount of points for those students who wear a t-shirt, hat, sweater or other item can be monitored by a homeroom check. For scavenger hunts and obstacle courses, this creates an exciting wild card for close competitions. For those who are not participating in the competitions, the points can be traded in for snacks or giveaways throughout the spirit week. Prizes and giveaways that traditionally support homecoming are also great for spreading pride. Foam #1 hands, noisemakers, buttons, stadium cups and other custom spirit giveaways can carry the school mascot and rally message.

Involve the community to build excitement and also raise funds. Parent organizations, churches and fire departments are great ways to spread the word to the community as a whole. Parents of students are likely to be part of these groups, and will be more than happy to participate in the planning and execution of the festivities. Fundraising by selling school branded merchandise, holding bake sales, and 50/50 raffles are some of the ways that these groups can help make the spring spirit event into a reality. These funds can be used to extend the participation by supporting ads in the local news channels as well.

Working together will enhance involvement for students and parents during the spring months. Providing a much needed boost for students, a spring school spirit event can boost morale and lift the enthusiasm for spring sports. Additionally, spirit events offer a stress relief and inspiration for test taking season. A warm counterbalance to the classic homecoming, this new spring tradition will be a welcome way to celebrate school pride.

Posted by Seth McGillicutty