Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, school districts have shifted how their schools operate. As we go back to a new way of schooling, many PTAs/PTOs – Parent Teacher Associations/Organizations – are figuring out how to operate virtually or with new restrictions. Rather than wait for things to return to "normal", PTAs and PTOs should lean in and stay active during these times.
They are a critical connection between the school and the parent community, and they play a big role in creating a positive school environment, whether physical or virtual. One great way to remain active and at the forefront is to release an updated fall event schedule. If you are at the early stages of doing so or want some ideas to add to your schedule, we’ve got you covered with our insight into virtual PTA fall events. What is the Parent Teacher Organization guide? Learn more as we explore.
The Parent Teacher Organization Fall Event Guide Starts Here:
1) Drive Through Ice Cream Social
Is there anyone who doesn’t like ice cream? We sure haven’t heard of such a person! Bring together the whole school community for a day of delicious fun with your PTA’s drive-through ice cream social. To pull this off, organizers should impose a car-only restriction where people must remain inside their cars as they drive past a makeshift counter to get a scoop of their favorite ice cream! Put on some music, hang some pretty lights, and soon you’ll have an atmosphere sure to bring out the best in everyone. Bonus: you can also use this as a membership drive by handing out PTA membership forms & collecting completed forms and dues.
2) Drive-in Movie Night
2020 theater shutdowns have driven a return to drive-in cinemas, and shelter-in-place requirements have also driven more family movie nights at home. Why not combine the two by arranging a drive-in movie night at your school’s parking lot or playground? Hang a sheet (or use a school wall) and borrow a projector. You can even sell some concession items by laying out single-serving items and having a donation box so that people can maintain social distancing while getting their snacks.
3) Craft Night
Quarantine has surely brought out the artist in us all, and what better way to come together than to share our artistic talents with each other? Organizations can arrange a virtual craft night where students create a craft they choose at home and later display it in a virtual meeting. Not only will this allow for human interaction while staying within the home, but it will also help your child’s talents blossom. PTAs can choose to follow a specific theme for each craft night or let loose and see what their students come up with; either way, it will be a fun-filled night for all!
4) School Virtual Field Trip
If there is one thing students look forward to during the whole school year, it is their much-awaited field trip. Field trips extend learning outside the classroom, be it physical or virtual, by allowing students to apply their classroom skills in the real world. While field trips are an in-person activity, PTAs can organize virtual ones. After all, students should not miss out on opportunities just because they are confined to their homes. PTAs can organize virtual field trips through museum tours, online aquarium and zoo visits, planetarium gazing, and more. The best field trips are interactive, so incorporating a scavenger hunt is a great way to engage students. You can even enter students who complete all scavenger items into a raffle for a prize! Hook up with an online meeting platform and bring all the fun of a trip to your student’s homes.
5) Virtual Bike to School Day
The global pandemic has seriously shortened our hours in the great outdoors. To encourage their students to do so, PTAs can arrange a virtual bike-to-school day where students bike to school or around the neighborhood and take pictures of their experience. PTAs can encourage social media sharing so students feel connected to each other’s experiences. This is also a great activity to turn into a contest by encouraging students to wear costumes or spirit wear and giving out prizes for the best costume and/or the most school spirit. Thinking ahead to any yearbook, PTAs can consolidate photos from this event for a yearbook page.
So, there you have it, some fun yet easily doable fall events to ensure that students keep up school spirit and that the community and school stay connected during hybrid or entirely virtual schooling.