Tag Archives: volunteers

Soccer Skills

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About three weeks ago, the PTA at the school where I work held a big auction.  It is a really fun night that is attended by parents and teachers and it raises a lot of money for our school.  The parent committee works very hard making the night perfect and this year, was a huge success.

One of the big “hits” of the evening are the teacher prizes.  All of the teachers donate a service to be auctioned off.  With prizes like, “Pizza and cupcakes with your teacher at lunch” or “Pancake Breakfast with your teacher” there is often a bidding war to win one!

One of my fellow kindergarten teachers and I offered a “Soccer Skills Class” after school and today was the day for us to carry out the prize.  My coworker Jessica is a very talented soccer player.  She played for her college and went on to coach for awhile afterwards.  She still plays several times a week in a league.  I, on the other hand, have learned to play soccer by watching my own kids play.  I know the rules, and I have fun playing, but after playing on season on an “over 40” team I realized that I was far from a stellar player and I stick to the sidelines.

The 6 children who won our prize didn’t care though!  My own boys came to help out and it was a fun filled hour of skills and a mini-game followed by a snack and a read aloud about soccer.

Our PTA goes over and beyond for the students and teachers at our school and these prizes that we donate are one way that we can give back.  Summer vacation begins next week and The PTA gets some time off as well and it is definitely time deserved.  Thank you for all you do!

Tricky Tray

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About nine years ago, before I was back at work full time, I approached my son’s PTA and told them that I had an idea that could raise some money!  A tricky tray!!  Many of them looked at me bewildered, because they did not know what it was.  A tricky tray is defined on Wikipedia as “a combination of a raffle and an auction that is typically featured at charity, church festival and numerous other events. Can also be known as penny social, Chinese auction or pick-a-prize according to local custom, or to avoid causing offense”.  Once that was cleared up, they decided we would try it.

Our fist Tricky Tray, we labeled as a “Ladies Lunch Out”and held it on a Sunday afternoon.  I do not remember the exact figures, but around sixty women showed up and we raised over $5000.  It took a lot of work, a lot of volunteers and a lot of time and in return, it sparked a lot of interest.  We did it again the following year on a Saturday night.  Men wanted in on this too!!  That year we raised over $10,000.  We knew we had hit upon a yearly fundraiser that would raise big money for the school.  I chaired that committee at the school for six years and each year did better and better!  This year, although I am no longer involved in that school, the tradition has continued and I hear that they raised over $25,000 at the last one.

Last year, a parent at the school where I teach, and my youngest son attends, came to me and told me he heard I was “The Tricky Tray Queen” and he wanted to start the tradition at our school.  We formed a team, got families involved and in a few short months, we had “The Spring Thing” on the calendar.  We raised over $20,000 at the first one.  Tonight, is our second for the school.   The donated prizes have been staggering!  We will feature a live auction, a silent auction and the ticket raffles.  There is no way of knowing ahead of time how much we will raise, but we expect to beat last year’s totals!!  We have so many volunteers this year.  People are excited because they know that this event is benefiting their children.

When I get involved in anything, I put every effort into it.  Whether it is Pajama Drives, Book Drives, Food Pantry… other than family and my job, it is all that I can focus on.  With the craziness of the last six weeks in my personal life, I have not been able to give the time I usually do.  Other than myself, are three chairpersons for the event.  They have taken on my load and I am so grateful for them.   It is not like me to back out on responsibilities, but I have had no choice.  They are so wonderful and have been so good to me.  They deserve tonight to be the best one yet.  They have worked hard and put a lot of time and effort into a volunteer job all for the benefit of the children of our school.  I hope that they are aware of how much they are appreciated.