What is your b-day party policy at school?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by SuzieQ, Aug 6, 2008.

  1. SuzieQ

    SuzieQ Companion

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    Aug 6, 2008

    At my old school we were not allowed to have bday parties for the kids during class time. The parents can bring treats in the morning to be passed out at recess only. At that time I thought they were missing out. These were first graders. Now that I am at another school where all the teachers allowed parties at the end of the day, being the new teacher I just went along with it. Oh whoever said that sugar does not cause hyperness was wrong!!! How they change when a parent is in the room, even if it is not their own parent! I want to change my bday policy. Do you all have written policies about bday parties? Can you share please? Thanks so much!
     
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  3. Mable

    Mable Enthusiast

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    We state that if they bring in a treat, it should be the last 10 minutes of the day. It always worries me about food allergies though.
     
  4. Bookworm

    Bookworm Companion

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    I have a Birthday Wish List. Parents are invited to purchase an item off the list and send it to school wrapped. The birthday child gets to open it in front of the class. On the list are books, games, puzzles, coloring books, etc. All things we can use during indoor recess. Each child gets to do all of the classroom jobs on their birthday. They also have their names announced on the morning school news. I give them a birthday sticker, pencil and a prize out of the birthday box. The gift is completely optional for families to participate. They are not allowed to send in food and drinks. I have about 60% of my families participate. We are a low-income school. Luckily with so many $ stores many families that can't afford to buy cupcakes, juice boxes, napkins, etc. can pick a couple of coloring books and still participate. Also, at the beginning of each month I send a letter home to the birthday kids reminding them of the gift option. I am very firm about the no treat part. They take up too much time and 95% of it goes to waste. I would rather the parents send gifts that will last. Many of my parents thanked me and loved not having to spend money on overpriced cupcakes.
     
  5. DaleJr88AmpFan

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    I allow the Birthday Child to bring in a treat for snack time. Before the Birthday Child passes out his/her snack, we all sing "Happy Birthday". Other than that, we do not have a special party or do anything else. Of course, at 5th grade, many want it to be know that it is their special day but not be "over the top".
     
  6. cinaminsweet

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    We're not allowed to have bday parties at all.
     
  7. trayums

    trayums Enthusiast

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    Oh my goodness- well our policy might be changing because we had a major issue at one of our elementary schools this year with a parent and principal and ice cream sandwiches! Ugh-- it was ugly and ridiculous and I don't think parents will be allowed to come to them anymore...
     
  8. adventuresofJ

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    My host teacher doesn't allow them in the classroom -- well not really -- there is a day once a month they get an extra snack... but students are not allowed to do it individually and students are NOT allowed to pass out invitations to parties at school. She believes this is less drama (6th grade) and students can do it out of school so no one feels left out.
     
  9. MsX

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    I am NOT a fan of birthday parties; they have become such an issue in my school. The kids do not behave well at all, and more and more I've had parents trying to outdo each other...I have parents that have asked to bring in pizza, and cake and goody bags... One of my co-workers had a parent ask her if she would allow a character (I think it was spongebob) come to the classroom for their kid's bday! I'm happy to make their child's birthday a special day, but this is SCHOOL after all!

    So, the first grade team at my school has changed it's policy. We're going to have one party a month and celebrate ALL the birthdays for that month(no individual parties on the actual bday). We'll have a parent bring in ONE treat for the class and we'll play a game or two (spending like 40 minutes on a friday afternoon or something). This way, we can do the celebrating but it doesn't have to happen 20 times (once for each child). Then on the child's ACTUAL birthday, we'll sing to him/her during morning meeting and the child may bring in a favorite book for me to read aloud to the class... plus I give them a birthday award and a pencil. Hopefully this will appease parents and be less stress for me!
     
  10. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    I let the parents bring in cupcakes & juice. We do it right before recess, which was the end of the day. Yes, some parents bring in goody bags, but for some of the kids it's their only party.

    I don't know when recess is going to be this year, but any birthday parties will be the final 10 min. of the day.
     
  11. GoldenPoppy

    GoldenPoppy Habitué

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    Families may bring in easy to serve snacks for the end of the day to celebrate a birthday. They have to be there to serve the snack; the teacher is not in charge of gathering plates, cups, etc., and passing things out. Birthday party invitations are not allowed to be passed out at school.
     
  12. Jem

    Jem Aficionado

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    Am I the only one who enjoys the parties, too? :woot:

    Usually my kids would bring the treats in when they came in the morning, and we'd set them on the back table. They we'd pass them out when started to get hungry, usually around 10am. We'd sing happy birthday, I'd give them a birthday sticker, certificate and gift, and we'd eat our treats. The biggest problem I ever had was kids taking a bite before the birthday kid. Unless the cupcakes looked really scary, I usually partook myself. And then they would always have a few left over that they would take around the school to their favorite teachers. I luuuuuved getting treats from random first graders who thought I was cool. I always let them take a few 'birthday jelly beans' from my jar.

    Those treats got me through plenty of hungry afternoons.
     
  13. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    On our birthdays the kids bring a treat to cook because we have a kitchen (obviously most of you won't have this!) We also have an ice-cream maker.

    If you can purchase an ice-cream maker, it's really fun, and would be easy if it's the plug in kind. The parent just brings the ice, the milk, cream, sugar, vanilla and something to go in the ice cream, like mint flavoring and chocolate chips.

    I never have parents come to the birthday celebrations. For first grade, I am thinking of getting those blank white crowns from Lakeshore. They would decorate their crown instead of doing morning message and the morning message for everyone else will be to write a page for the birthday book. I will bind the book together and the kids will hear the book at the end of the day while they eat their ice cream.

    With my older kids, we did appreciations at the end of the day for the birthday person while we ate the treats we made. I also did a birthday mad lib, which was about the child and the kids filled in all the parts of speech. They loved it!
     
  14. Jem

    Jem Aficionado

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    I love these ideas! Do you have a copy of the mad lib?
     
  15. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    Unfortunately the teacher before me started the routine of "the teacher" buying the birthday treat for each student and because I had the same students I was stuck doing it last year. I have a small class but $7 a birthday adds up when you are not being reimbursed. This year, I refuse to buy treats although I will have the same students as last year. I decided this at the end of last year when a parent sent in a "special snack" for her child the day before her birthday and sent a note that her child will be eating this instead of the provided treat. I have 1 student whom I know for sure that his mother will not buy him a present or cake at home, so I will give him something to bring to share with the class.
     
  16. MsX

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    I do think how you handle birthdays depends on your class/school. As I said before, I'm changing my policy because birthdays have gotten crazy at my school over the past few years. However, at the last school i was at, I'd always just have the birthday child bring in a treat and we'd eat it during snack... it really was not at all a disruption to the day. Last year, parties were taking more than 30-40 minutes between passing everything out and everyone eating and cleaning up (not to mention the behavior issues). Plus, even though I requested easy to serve treats, I'd have parents bring in things like ice cream cake! (which, although is quite tasty, it is not QUICK nor EASY to serve). So, I'd say, it's probably best to talk with other teachers and see what works for them. What works fine at one school or grade may not work for another! :)
     
  17. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    I worked in a mandarin bi-lingual school. Those parents actually had parties in class. The would bring meals for the students and adults in the class (one mother even walked in with a tray of french fries). They even brought relatives with them. They gave out huge gift bags and games for the students to play.
     
  18. Jem

    Jem Aficionado

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    Perhaps that's a cultural thing? My last middle school was part of a k-8, and the elementary building was mostly Philippino students. The parents would do the same thing-huge potlucks by all the parents for birthday, with tons of traditional food and games. It got so big that they now just have one day a month for parties, but I think most of that day is spent partying.
     
  19. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    I also think that the parents at that school used the school party as their child's birthday party. They did not invite school friends to their house for parties.
     
  20. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    I made about 8 different ones last year but lost them when my hard drive crashed!!! I am not really up to making them again at the moment, but if the inspiration hits, I'll email you!
     
  21. MissFroggy

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    When I worked in the Bronx, the parties were really elaborate too. We weren't allowed to have birthday parties with parents there, but we would have soda, cake, treats, and all sorts of things. All the kids would bring something for the child's birthday. We would push back all the desks and play appropriate hip-hop and they would break dance in the middle of the room!! The party usually lasted about an hour and we did that instead of going to the cafeteria for lunch. I don't think many kids had birthday parties at home.

    When we had holiday parties, parents would come and bring whole MEALS! Chicken and rice, empanadas, tamales and all kinds of things!! Desserts like fried plantains, ice cream, pie and whatever else you can imagine. It was really a big deal!
     
  22. SuzieQ

    SuzieQ Companion

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    Some of you mentioned that parents don't come to the parties. Do you state that in the begining of the year policy or is it because they don't get the time off of work. I think it's the parents that add to the stress to the parties. They want to take lots of staged group shots, videotape, and act silly with the kids. Once that happens, all kids want to be silly too. And yes some parents do overspend and try to out do each other. They want to bring pizza, cupcakes, chips, goodie bags etc.. I enjoy parents coming to our holiday celebration parties but it's a different story with the birthday parties. Do any of you not allow parents to attend? I really want to change my policy.
     
  23. Miss W

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    We don't do parties. Our state doesn't allow snacks, so parents can't bring anything to school. Like others, invitations are not allowed to be passed out at school.

    Our kids get recognized over the intercom on their birthday (or half-birthday) and get to go down to the office for a pencil and birthday sticker. In my room I give the kids a birthday pencil, bookmark, and certificate. They also get to choose a book out of my Birthday Book Box. After they choose which one they like, I write a little message inside the cover.
     
  24. Jem

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    Wait-your state doesn't allow snacks? So all kids get is breakfast, lunch and dinner?

    I had lunch at 12pm. It is now 2:11 and I am about to fall off my chair I am so dizzy. I need to go get a granola bar or something, or I will not make it until 5. How can they expect kids to go that long without food?
     
  25. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    Yep. The law has been in effect for 2 or 3 years now (can't remember when). No food treats are allowed. We do have 9 "snack" days a year and that includes our Fall, Winter, and Valentine parties. They're only allowed to have certain foods that meet the state guidelines. From what I can remember, Kindergarteners are allowed to have snacks every day if they meet the specific guidelines.
     
  26. Andrea L

    Andrea L Habitué

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    We do our birthday parties if a child brings treats during lunch because we eat in our rooms. We go down to pick up our lunch from the kitchen and then the students sit at their desks and eat. The Birthday person picks one person to help pass out napkins. If they bring juice and cupcakes/cookies I let them pick two people. We sing Happy B-day and then the birthday person takes a bite before anyone else can eat. The birthday treat must be done by the end of lunch. Recess is right after lunch so they go and run off the sugar. It works very well. Of course the child can only provide un-opened treats from a grocery store.

    I do give each child a certificate, pencil, and piece of candy on the morning of their birthday.
     
  27. Matt633

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    I mail a "Happy Birthday" postcard to them at home. They get a Happy Birthday Pencil, Treasure Box treat and it is up to each individual parent to bring in cupcakes or whatever for birthdays. I have lunch with my kids so we usually do it during that time...Unless it is Friday and then I try to get them to do it at the last part of the day!
     
  28. Matt633

    Matt633 Comrade

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    Aug 7, 2008

    Miss Froggy....if you get around to doing the ad-lib please post it so we can all have it or email me too PLEASSSSSEE!
     

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