Contributed by Rachel L., PTO Member, Maple Grove, MN
We start asking for donations for food and gift certificates in March. Many of our local businesses are happy to accommodate us as we try to do some door prizes every day. We choose a theme for each day and decorate the teacher’s lounge differently each day to go with our theme.
Monday – The week starts with bagels and coffee for the staff on Monday. We get coffee donations from a local shop and give away a few gift certificates for coffee. I love the Twister Mug from Anderson’s for this day as a giveaway .
Tuesday – Garden Day. Bright colored tableware and potted plants make up the décor. Platters of fruits and veggies are the treats for the day and we give away the plants as prizes so they serve double duty.
Wednesday - Sports Day. We celebrate our local MN Twins baseball team and encourage staff to wear Twins gear. Décor is red, white, and blue tableware with lots of baseball gear scattered around. Food is Cracker Jack, nachos, and hot dogs.
Thursday – Sweets and Treats Day. This day costs virtually nothing as we load up the tables in the lounge with tons of cookies, bars, cupcakes, and candy, all made with love from our parents.
Friday – We end the week with a catered lunch and a gift for staff members; consider a personalized lanyard from Anderson’s for a special touch.
Truly, we are a PTO on a budget and you can make this week very easy on your wallet. Asking for donations from businesses helps to offset costs and some restaurants may cater for you at cost. We purchase solid color tableware and festive decorations so each day pops with a new color. We play music each day in the lounge. Another fun idea is to have families meet at school on Sunday night and write all over the sidewalk with colored chalk about how much you love your teachers and staff. The staff will love walking in to school on Monday!
You don’t have to spend a lot of money to make the teachers feel special. Enjoy!