Thursday, December 05, 2013

Festival Tree's

 Last year at the Festival of Tree's we only had 7 tree's. It was sad and just lame! Last year I was so disgusted with the entire event that I was all for opting out of this community event. Looking back I see why it was such a terrible night. There were 4 of us on the Booster Club and our leader was a procrastinator. I really think it is seriously impossible to put on a grand community event 2 weeks before the scheduled date and have it remotely successful. Being new to the community and never been to the Festival of Tree's I was going in blind and doing what I was asked.
 In the past we have had businesses donate decorated Christmas Tree's to be raffled off. Most businesses turned us away last year not wanting to participate. I think everyone was really struggling with the economy and businesses just couldn't do it. Wanting to change things up a bit I presented to our Booster Club last year that maybe next year (this year) we should have all the grades decorate a tree. That way we'd start off with at least 8 tree's. I wanted to go around and buy the tree's after Christmas when they were on clearance. We'd hold on to them and then give them to the classes to decorate. They thought it was a good idea but we weren't sure we were going to participate because it was such a terrible night. This was suppose to be our biggest fund raiser of the year and after expenses we only made $250. I could go on and on how terrible the night was and what we did wrong.  

This year we decided to try having each class decorate a tree. The other 3 ladies and I made many trips, made many phone calls and posted add's all over the place looking for donated Christmas Tree's. We needed a total of 8. What wasn't given to us we bought at thrift stores. I then contacted all the Room Mom's back in October and asked them to work with teacher's and their class in decorating their tree's. I had a few that were great and other's chewed me out over the phone telling me it wasn't in their "job" description of being a Room Mom. My eye's were opened this year with the lack of parental help and I'll leave it at that. Needless to say I ended up "helping" decorate tree's over these past few weeks. 

Here they are......
6th Grade did a school tree.

 The Room Mom asked each student to bring in a book or a box of crayons, marker's, pencils, etc.

5th Grades Room Mom did "Thank Ewe" cards. She wasn't able to be there so I did her project for her. The kids made the cards with scrapbook paper and then made matching envelopes to go with. My sister picked up a stuffed lamb for me that we used as the tree topper. The tree needed a little more so I added plain chipboard cut out's and red holly.

4th Grade Tree...

This Room Mom had the kids hot glue peppermint's together and then she only planned on them making one each. This being Madelyn's class tree her her and I spruced it up a bit more. It really was terrible with only the one ornament on it. We bought red bulbs and turned them into Santa's belly, added some ribbon, attached red and white berries and of course candy canes. My kids called it a Santa Clause Tree so I kept going. I took a Santa Hat that doesn't fit anyone to use as our tree topper. For our tree skirt I wrapped a card board box in red wrapping paper and used Hunter's black/silver duct tape for the belt. For the stuffing coming out I ripped apart an old pillow that wasn't being used anymore.

3rd Grade Tree....

Our 3rd grade teacher loves penguins so the room mom took light bulbs and painted them to look like penguins. She had blue and red candy canes and then used chip board cut out's to spruce it up a bit. 

2nd Grades Room Mom baled on me so after making a few phone calls I found a grandma willing to help us. There class theme this year is Dr. Seuss. 

This grandma brought in red bulbs and had the kids put white circle sticker's on them for their contribution. She then added other Dr. Seuss/Grinch ornaments she made out of foam. Very original, very cute. 

Our Kindergarten class....

The Kindergarten's class theme this year is Owls. The room mom bought owl foam kits from Oriental Trading for the class to make. She then took felt and styrofoam balls and made more owls and the tree topper.

Can you guess which class this ones from?

It's Preschool's. Miss Wendy did an AMAZING job. She took burlap and had the kids paint it with white paint. When it dried the teacher's cut it into star shapes. She also mad applesauce dough and had the kids make star cut out's. As if that wasn't enough she also let the kids decorate plastic clear bulbs with star stickers. Inside the bulbs the kids put star cut out's inside. It was everyone's favorite tree. I loved that kids made so much of the decorations and it was beautiful.

1st Grade did a western theme. I was afraid I'd end up doing this class too but in the end I found a mom willing to help out.  The kids glued star cut outs back to back. The mom had red beads attached to the branches. She covered old Christmas bulbs in bandana print using modge podge. She also attached square pieces of burlap and wrapped the tree with a rope. It was pretty cute too and another favorite.

Our lunch ladies wanted to participate too and so made a Hello Kitty Tree.

Our Math lady know as "Math Mindy" also decorated a tree with math flash cards, math books, fake money and other math related fun stuff.

We did great with our trees' this year! Everyone that helped participate did an amazing job. The Booster Club also did a tree but I must have missed taking it's picture.  It really added to our Festival of Tree's. I'm so glad we had our grades decorate a tree. On our big night only 4 tree's were brought to us as a donation. We just can't call it Festival of Tree's when we've only got 4 tree's.  It was great having so many more tree's.

During our big night each tree brought in anywhere from $20-$80. The tree's after cost really didn't bring in a lot of money but we wanted the experience for the kids. We wanted the kids to have fun, do something they normally don't do at school and be excited to show off their tree on our big night. For that we were successful.