Although our kids haven’t been physically meeting in school, the PTA has worked hard behind the scenes this semester to keep our families and students engaged and connected to White Eagle Elementary community they know and love.
To kick off the school year, the PTA’s membership drive had a special incentive! Each student whose family enrolled in a PTA membership received a complimentary mask lanyard kit as a thank you gift. The lanyard kits included beads of purple, tea and ivory (our school colors) as well as letters that spelled out “White Eagle” or “Go Wolves.” Not only do these lanyards help keep those face masks from getting lost, they also provide a way for us to show our school spirit around town.
In October, our second graders hosted the annual coat drive. The students partnered with the local boy scouts and collected coats, hats, mittens, scarves and boots for local families in need this winter. Once again, our White Eagle family showed up and donated hundreds of items for our Aurora neighbors.
Since many of our typical in-person fundraising events—including restaurant nights and our Fall Carnival—could not take place due to social distancing, the PTA got creative in its fundraising efforts. The school hosted several Food Truck events in Circle Drive and invited all families and neighbors to preorder their food to encourage social distancing. It felt great to see students and families excited to be on campus again in a safe way. These events helped our families who have grown weary of cooking dinner every night and also raised $2,000 for our school.
While the PTA couldn’t host any holiday parties in the classroom this year, we were able to plan fun events where students could still participate in festive activities. Our “Virtual Halloween Party” included a neighborhood scavenger hunt for Halloween. Students were seen wandering the neighborhood looking for scary goblins, spider webs or witches’ feet. The PTA rewarded one participating student from each grade with a gift card to Andy’s Frozen Yogurt.
December 2nd marked one of the few in-person school events allowed at White Eagle Elementary this semester. The evening brought two PTA-sponsored events together under one theme of “Shining Our Bright Light” within our school, neighborhood and community.
PTA volunteers put together 525 kits containing materials and instructions for students to design a clay pot tree ornament that they could then hang on one of the two large pine trees outside of the school building. Rather than being a holiday-specific event, the idea was to allow students to design decorations under an all-inclusive theme that represented 2020. Projection lights illuminated the trees and families came through one at a time to hang their handmade ornaments on the trees for a bright display showing the community that we have remained White Eagle Strong during the hardest of times this year. We hope to have started a new fun tradition at school!!
That same evening, we also collected toys and clothing gifts for the local children in need through our 5th grade service project with the Salvation Army’s Angel Giving Tree. Families and neighbors of White Eagle Elementary came together to fulfill 200 gift tags for the Salvation Army. And our school generosity did not stop there! Salvation Army of Aurora’s donations are down by 75% this year, and our White Eagle family was able to donate $2,000 of extra toys to the organization which will then be distributed to other children on their list.
We continue to communicate that we are White Eagle Strong and just how resilient our children truly are. The PTA will continue to get creative to try to support our children and families through this unprecedented school year. Please continue to follow our White Eagle PTA Facebook page for the latest news and events and if you have any ideas, we would love to hear from you. You can email us at whiteeaglePTA00@gmail.com