Does your school have a Sunshine Committee? Almost every school that I have taught at has had some type of committee that brings a little sunshine-happiness-positivity to the campus. I led the committee for a few years, so I thought I’d share a little about what we did to celebrate teacher day appreciation every day!
First of all, let’s talk about what a Sunshine Committee does. I’ve seen it used for several different purposes, but the main goal is to boost the moral among the staff, or to maintain a positive environment! When we first started, our focus was more about helping teachers who were sick, going through a hard time, or who had lost a loved one. That’s a great thing, but it didn’t encourage the staff on a monthly, weekly, or daily basis. And we really wanted to showcase teacher appreciation beyond Teacher Day. So, let’s look at some other things a Sunshine Committee can do (Also, I am NOT telling you to spend your own money. Many schools allot money in their budgets for things like these. Others collect a fee from all teachers before the year starts. Some ask the PTO/PTA for assistance):
1. A Teacher’s Survival Kit: Make a basket of necessities for the teacher bathroom. Put things like spray deodorant, a lint roller, static guard, mouthwash, lotion, air freshener, wrinkle releaser, etc in the basket. We all forget these things from time to time so it’s a nice treat to have them on hand! I can’t even tell you how big of a difference this one little basket made. (Labels can be found at the bottom of this blog post)
2. Stock the Fridge! During the beginning of the year, after a holiday, before state testing, etc. get sodas, iced coffees, water, etc so that teachers can enjoy a cold drink during the school day. It’s much easier than a Sonic run for the whole staff and very affordable! (Labels can be found at the bottom of this blog post)
3. Lounge Luxuries: You know how annoying it is to sit down for lunch only to notice that you forgot a fork… and then you have to go grab a spork that won’t even cut into your food, ha! Put things like plasticware, toothpicks, sweetener, napkins, straws, etc in the lounge for the teachers to quickly grab during their very short lunch time! This is a CHEAP way to make a BIG impact! (Labels can be found at the bottom of this blog post)
4. Staff Shout-Out Board: I’ve done a variety of staff shout out boards throughout the years, but here is the gist of them: Each staff member has a place where other teachers, admin, staff, etc can write encouraging notes to them. Maybe you saw something awesome in their classroom. Maybe they helped you out. Maybe you just want to share a little note of encouragement. Whatever the case may be, teachers feel uplifted when they notice that someone took the time to write a sweet note. This needs to be located somewhere that teachers walk by daily. Here are some others I’ve done.
Here’s an example of using a shout-out board in the classroom:
This next one I made for random notes of kindness rather than having a spot for each staff member.
5. Staff Birthdays: As teachers we are so good about celebrating the birthdays of our students, but we should be celebrated as well! For the past couple of years I have created a Staff Birthday Board in the office area. This just makes it easy to see when someone has a birthday and it shows the teachers that we care about them! I have 2 different options available in my Birthday Banner pack.
Here is a look at the staff birthday board I created this year for the teachers at my daughter’s school. I blurred out their names, but each balloon as a list of the teacher’s names and birthdays for that month.
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