National Grandparents Day is celebrated on the first Sunday after Labor Day and was signed into law by President Jimmy Carter in 1978. It’s meant as a day to focus on the contributions senior citizens make by sharing their wisdom, strength, and love with their families and others. Here is how a few National Heritage Academies schools celebrated Grandparents Day with their students.
Atlanta Heights Charter School
Atlanta Heights Charter School held its Grandparents Day celebration on the morning of Sept. 13. It was organized by Student/Family Liaison Danyale Barrow-Hutson to honor the special relationship the scholars have with their grandparents. More than 260 grandparents and students attended the event catered by Chick-fil-A.
“Our mission was to bring together families with fun-filled activities that everyone enjoyed,” Barrow-Hutson said. “The theme was ‘Grandparents Matter’ which was based on a conversation I had with a grandparent, as they said ‘Well, I'm just the grandma!’ We wanted to relay a message of how important it is for grandparents to help mold the student and relay the ‘old school’ and ‘new school’ culture, wisdom, and social differences, so scholars can respect the value grandparents add to scholar’s lives.”
More than 260 guests attended Grandparents Day at Atlanta Heights Charter School.
Barrow-Hutson hosted the event with Family Feud, Jeopardy, and Shazam questions using Kahoot. As the guests counted down to the top answers, the crowd was anxious for the top five winners. They roared and expressed signs of relief in their selections explained Barrow-Hutson.
Family pictures were gathered as registrations were received so a PowerPoint presentation could be created to surprise grandparents and students, leaving them with tears of joy and celebratory clapping.
Chick-fil-A catered the breakfast this family enjoyed at Atlanta Heights.
“We strive to host activities that bridge the gap in the school-to-home connection,” Barrow-Hutson said. “We discussed the importance of grandparents’ vast amount of knowledge and wisdom in sharing ‘Words of Wisdom’ hand-written advice notes, and ‘Getting to Know Me’ Bingo game cards where the attendees had to answer questions about their family member.”
The students and guests enjoyed all the activities and participated in a book fair and presentation on the effects of grandparent involvement as it relates to the school-to-home connection. Lastly, a few guests participated in a Best-Look-A-Like contest between grandparent and grandchild.
Research Triangle Charter Academy
Over 100 grandparents attended the special day at Research Triangle Charter Academy in Durham, North Carolina. Students shared lunch as they sat with their visitors, chatted about things they’re learning in class and introduced their friends. With the large number of attendees, some students ate with their grandparents in the gym, while others welcomed them to their classrooms.
At Timberland Charter Academy, this grandparent read a book to the scholars.
These grandparents enjoyed visiting their granddaughter at Timberland.
Timberland Charter Academy
At Timberland Charter Academy, the event was called, “Snack with a Grandfriend Day,” which eighth-grade Math Teacher Mary Amy Bajt organized. Grandparents and grandfriends visited their students in the classroom.
Bajt prepared a variety of activities that classes could do depending on the grade-level. There was fun information/coloring sheets grandparents and students could complete together. It had fill in the blank questions such as: “She and I love to…” or “When he was my age, he liked to…” or “She makes the very best…” or “My grandpa is so good at…”. A Google slide show was created with 15 prepared questions the classes could ask the grandparents, as well.
About 100 grandparents at Research Triangle Charter Academy enjoyed eating with their grandkids in the classrooms.
“The idea was to use these prompts to get the grandparents to share their knowledge and information with our students,” Bajt said. “We hadn’t hosted a grandparents day in several years and it is a nice way to bring community members into the school.
“One middle school class had two sets of grandparents come in, both couples married for more than 30 years. One of the students asked them if they had ever cheated on a test and the woman said yes once, and she would never do it again. The man said he cheated all the time and that it didn’t work out for him. He said, ‘you get a lot further in life by being honest.’ So, that grandfather spun a lesson out of it, and everyone clapped after he was done.”
Research Triangle Charter Academy scholars had fun visiting with their grandparents.
During the snack time which was cookies for the grandfriends and fruit snacks for the kids, some teachers played this Funny Video.
About National Heritage Academies:
National Heritage Academies (NHA) is a network of 98 tuition-free, public charter schools across nine states, serving more than 60,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade. For more information, visit nhaschools.com.
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