Strategies that serve students… and your staff too !
School themes are “ideas put in motion” to help you invest in their future.
They’re your ideas combined with my ideas… aimed at promoting your school spirit.
Many teachers like to use themes in their instructional units. Themes can focus on a single topic of interest to students.
They can build on the natural interests of learners and become the core for group activities.
Whether we’re writing, speaking, listening, reading or calculating, the content-related concepts can all be taught within the context of your school theme.
Themes can bring all related concepts under a single umbrella. Themes also attract and maintain student interest while providing continuity for a series of activities.
Shool themes are simply recurring elements in a literary or artistic work… and together we design them to promote school spirit and unify staff and students.
>What’s this “together” stuff you say ? Well… your school is unique.
I’ll provide the school themes template describing benefits, features and examples of how to implement each school theme.
And… you’ll add the special ingredients that make it YOURS.
Your staff, your colors, school logo, motto, academic achievements, sports accomplishments, special community relations… and all those things that make your school different from every other school.
That’s what you and your theme team will want to add.
One theme at a time… each of you will add an extra twist here and there that makes it your personal achievement.
Teamwork Will Inspire Students and Teachers
A TWIST mural is painted on the wall where student success awards are displayed. The mural theme matches your theme shirt logo. Let’s remember we’re having fun as we promote school spirit – Pictures of juke boxes, hula hoops, couples in bobby sox and pony tails or flat tops, 50’s cars, soda jerks, Chubby Checker, etc.
School Themes Help Encourage, Motivate and Excite Staff and Students
These are all exciting claims but let’s be sure we all know that a fair amount of creativity is required.
Ideas have to begin somewhere. Those special individuals with creativity in their bones have to generate the plan that inspires, excites and motivates both students and staff. Not much happens without these creative souls.
Upstanding Students All-Around
The USA theme offers a great opportunity to emphasize citizenship and patriotism. It can be especially effective during the Olympics or Presidential election years. Theme USA may also be utilized to improve character or introduce a character education program into your curriculum. Character building focus words are chosen: caring, respect, positive attitude, tolerance, responsibility, honesty, listening, cooperation, and manners are examples.
What Are The Benefits?
Our School themes are designed specifically to help you support your School Spirit. And that’s one thing we can all use a little more of… whether we’re talking about pre-school themes, high school themes, or even music themes…
All school themes help to keep the entire staff motivated and positive throughout the school year.
Focusing on Important Educational Standards That All students can meet
Fiesta Themes add color to your school. Imagine the school filled with bright colors and pi?atas hanging in the classroom. This theme easily sets the stage to explore different cultures and languages. Bulletin boards can be decorated with pictures of sombreros, cactus, hot peppers, Mexican food, guitars, donkeys, parrots, Mexican blankets, ponchos, pi?atas, Mexican pottery, etc.
School themes develop positive attitudes and inspire students. And this can start early… even as early as kindergarten.
School themes provide opportunities for individual recognition. We all want our activities and actions to be noticed. Each of our school themes provides examples of how students can be recognized upom completion of theme related events.
Successfully Educating All Students
Imagine pictures of ships, palm trees, seagulls, ocean life, lighthouses, etc. All communication documents such as parent newsletters, staff bulletins, the school web site, school stationary, student and staff handbooks, etc., display the SEAS theme. During the first school year staff meeting teachers receive a “treasure chest”.
School themes develop and foster healthy relationships among students. We all benefit from an early start in developing healthy relationships… and of course… elementary school themes are not too early to start.
Students Having Opportunities for Excellence and Success
A very common household name. Yet, the SHOES theme can be used across the curriculum i.e. physical education, science, mathematics, social studies, communications, art and other subject areas. Students walk in the shoes of the people in which they are studying, they walk through different math problems and display the steps along the way. In art they use shoes for still life drawings or make different shoes from clay. In physical education they discuss the importance and quality of shoes for various physical activites.
School themes also aid in building character, and generating excitement among students.
Helping All To Succeed
Just imagine the school spirit you can introduce with this theme. Fireman hats, police officer hats, Navy, Marine, Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, etc. Hats can always be used as symbols of student interest in various professional professions. HATS can also be emphasized across the curriculum to study different historical time periods. And let’s not forget the special headwear worn by some of our Presidents, Sports figures, and First Ladies.
Speaking of excitement…
School years are usually the most exciting years of our lives. From your first coloring sheet to high school spirit week… there was hardly a dull moment.
Many treasurable memories come from our school days. The life long friends, the yearbooks, graduation ceremonies, the dances, the parties, sports activities, etc. Think about it… school days brought lots of fun.
Reaching Outcomes through Daily Educational Opportunities
Do you remember – I’m a Rhinestone Cowboy by Glen Campbell, or RODEO by Garth Brooks? The RODEO theme offers many opportunities to play the Country & Western card. We liven up decorations with cowboy hats, bandanas, stage coach competitions and lively celebrations of student successes.
And what made school so exciting?
It was the daily activities… teachers who cared, best friends, a positive and supportive learning environment, a good principal, cool bus rides, winning against our rival schools, lettering in sports, getting all my homework in on time, school jackets, Friday night hangouts… and a school showing spirit.
Whether we’re dealing with students in kindergarten, grade school, middle school, elementary school, junior high school or high school…
We can all benefit from the many social and personal attributes school themes can address.
Have A Positive, Productive Year
As with all good ideas there is a “kick-off” session and each unique theme contains ideas related to that particular acronym. In this case the theme HAPPY is selected and we’ve incorporated related ideas and “theme” content concepts. The HAPPY theme brings joy to your school. Imagine bright yellow happy faces decorating the halls and classrooms. Everywhere you look there is a smile. It promotes a positive climate for teaching and learning.
Creating Your School Theme
Most school themes are developed around a “play on words” and form an acronym. Take the word “HAPPY” for instance. With a little creativity, the word “HAPPY” can easily represent…Have A Positive Productive Year (H.A.P.P.Y)
Why use acronyms to develop a school theme?
Children with Happy Attitudes Make Positive Influences On neighborhood Schools
The list of champions is long… and this theme offers a great opportunity to emphasize citizenship excellence in the classroom and school environment. The Olympic motto is Citius, Altius, Fortius, which is Latin for “faster, higher, stronger.” The intended meaning is that one’s focus should be on bettering one’s achievements, rather than on coming in first. This theme encourages students to be champions of character in whatever they do.
Because, acronyms are a “play” on words” the possibilities are endless.
Here are some additional acronym word choices you may find useful in developing your own school themes.
Teamwork, Trust, Freedom, Choices, Money, Hope, Loyalty, Safety, Peace…
The “possibilities” list is as long or short as your imagination.
Love, Pride, Heroes, Anger, Humor, War, Dreams…etc.
And we’ve also prepared a short acronym tutorial for your review.
As you create your school theme always remember their purpose…
Study, Try, Achieve for Recognition and Success
Each teacher deserves special STAR recognition everyday for their commitment to children and the learning environment. And let’s also remember the STARs in the administrative arena: our principals, superintendents, secretaries, librarians, janitors, buss drivers, security personnel, guidance counselors, cooks, nurses. And on and on. Many opportunities exist to recognize these folks (STARS) for their unending kindness, judgment, respect, courage, self discipline and responsibility.
School themes are intended to inspire heightened school spirit, motivate staff and students and help teachers administer in a positive learning environment.
We’ve associated the Power theme with a new before school program called the Power Hour. Although all of our themes are intended to promote school spirit . we also recognize the need to balance that objective with student and teacher academic priorities. Thus, the Power Hour implements improved time management initiatives designed to meet individual student needs and promote academic successes.
Make Your School Spirit Soar!
That way it’s simple to find!