Tips for Activities - Texas Association of School Boards

Tips for Activities - Texas Association of School Boards
Tips for Activities

Hooray for the 2017 All-Star Team: Champions for Kids
Ideas to Get You Started

January 2017 is School Board Recognition Month
By definition, an All-Star Team is composed of winners. If each campus adopts one trustee to honor,
you can invite him or her to a lunch or assembly. Line the hall leading into the room with students on
both sides, waving pom-poms and “you’re number one” oversized hands made of foam rubber. Em-
phasize that your board members are hitting home runs or working as a team. Obviously, use stars on

When you start planning, ask each board member to identify his or her favorite sport. It could be a
traditional spectator sport such as basketball, baseball, soccer, and football. But, it could be golf, fly-
fishing, boxing, bowling, running, skiing, dirt biking, tennis, bull riding, soccer, archery, hunting, auto
racing, sailing, or bicycling. Stretch your imagination (and the theme a bit), and you could use this
information to put more individualized, personal touches on items you present to each.

Visit dollar and craft stores to find miniature trophies, footballs, and other sports equipment to decorate
layered cakes or individual cupcakes. Assemble toy plastic bats and balls into centerpiece arrange-
ments. For goodie baskets, consider:
     • Sports drinks
     • Wrist bands
     • Energy bars
     • Athletic socks
     • Simple T-shirts with 2017 All-Star Team or stars painted on by hand
     • Bagged peanuts still in the shell
Or if you are expanding the sports theme a bit, think of:
     • Duck calls
     • Golf balls and tees
     • Sun visors with school or district logo
     • Fishing lures on a school gimmee cap

Do a search for sports images. You can’t use images that have copyright or trademark without permis-
sion. But these may generate some great ideas for students to help them create their own artwork.

Here is a link to coloring pages students can use. Again, respect copyright.

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Tips for Activities - Texas Association of School Boards

    • As always, work with elementary and middle school teachers to create a variety of thank-you
      cards, place mats, banners, posters, and bulletin-board displays.
    • Canvas bags adorned with student-painted masterpieces and filled with small goodies can be
      given to board members.
    • Use badges created by TASB and place this artwork on the district website.
    • Incorporate the slogan and artwork as part of staff e-mail signatures during the month of January.
    • Ask students to interview board members for campus news or radio shows and student publica-
      tions. Find out why they served on the school board, and why teamwork is important for school
      and work.
    • These quotes can also be used in news releases or articles used in the district newsletter and
      local paper.
    • Simple jerseys can be adorned with 2017 All-Star Team and presented to each board member.
    • Prepare cookies made with a star-shaped cookie cutter or pipe star icing on cookies and other
      treats. Attach small sticks to cookies and prepare a cookie bouquet that can be presented at a
      reception or delivered to the board member’s office or home.
    • Create streamers by attaching individual letters to yarn or cords and spell out Hooray All-Star
    • Create small pennants with thank-you notes from students and attach these on pretty ribbons to
      the walls, over doors, or on the boardroom dais.

One last reminder: Please complete and return the “Tell Us How You Celebrated” form so the dis-
trict’s great ideas can be shared in next year’s kit. District highlights are featured on the following pages
for even more ideas.

                                                                                                    (Tips–p. 2)
Tips for Activities - Texas Association of School Boards

District Highlights
District highlights of celebrations held across the state last January follow. Consider stealing some of
these to kick start your efforts. Last January, we had string quartets, wonderful videos, group pictures
of the entire board with their families, and many other nonexpensive ways of expressing thanks to our
hard working trustees. They truly appreciate anything from the kids.

Aransas County ISD
Campuses posted a thank you on their campus marquees and board members were recognized on
the district website, Facebook page, and in the local newspaper. On the night of the January board
meeting, a dinner was held in their honor and the high school choir surprised them with a small con-
cert. Each principal gave the board members gifts that were made by their art departments. In addi-
tion, the district’s volunteer coordinator and her volunteers decorated the boardroom bulletin board
and tables for dinner.

Bells ISD
A barbecue dinner was provided and served by the high school and junior high campuses. Elementary
student council members came to the board meeting and presented each member with a pineapple
upside-down cake they made from scratch. Using pictures of the board members, students also cre-
ated super-hero cartoons and hung them in the boardroom for the meeting.

Bonham ISD
The district showed a great deal of appreciation to board members at their monthly meeting. One
board member even commented he didn't feel he deserved so much for just serving the district.

The campuses outdid themselves with decorated cups of candy and ribbons, monogramed clipboards
and tumblers, wooden crafts, and T-shirts that read, “I’m not saying I’m Superman. I’m just saying no-
body has ever seen me and Superman in a room together.” Staff found a “Super-hero Name Genera-
tor” online and gave each board member a unique super-hero title with a short backstory.

Burnet CISD
The big hit at the School Board Appreciation Dinner and
board meeting was the wall hanging that had each board
member’s face portrayed in a super-hero body.

Board members and their families joined administrators
for dinner and fellowship before the meeting began. The
dining area and boardroom were decorated with super-
power posters, centerpieces, and place mats created by
                                                                                                (Tips–p. 3)
Tips for Activities - Texas Association of School Boards

the elementary campuses. The principals presented each board member with a special certificate and
Bulldog shirt in recognition of the member’s service. In addition, each campus adopted a board mem-
ber and invited him or her for lunch on campus.

Burton ISD
In January, students and staff showed their recognition for board members by filling up the boardroom
with banners, posters, cards, place mats, certificates of appreciation, goodie bags, a paper weight
with pictures in it, a personalized mug, sandwiches, drinks, cookies, and candy. Articles were featured
in the “Neighbors” section of Brenham Banner Press and Burton Bulletin. The publication aired on
KWHI as part of the weekly superintendent radio announcement. The first grade even made an iMovie
to express thanks.

Clarksville ISD
A picture of the school board was placed on the district’s electronic sign along with information that
it was School Board Recognition Month. The local newspaper ran each member’s picture with his or
her vision of being a board member. The elementary students provided a large, signed poster saying
thank you, read a poem, and presented paper flowers to each member during the board meeting. The
middle/high school students thanked the members and brought homemade peach cobbler. Talk about
just desserts.

Copperas Cove ISD
Trustees got a sweet treat from elementary students and staff with a delicious dessert reception. It was
followed by a trip around the world with students doing dances from several different countries and
introducing them in their native languages. The staff felt it was truly an event to honor board members
for their selfless service to the community.

Cypress-Fairbanks ISD
As in years past, a book was donated to the library. A thank-you note
explained, “The book that will be dedicated in your honor is Marvelous
Cornelius: Hurricane Katrina and the Spirit of New Orleans. Thank you
to our school board for all your help in making our district a positive,
caring, and MARVELOUS place for our staff to work and our students
to learn!”

The district also created a fun pictorial reminiscent of The Brady
Bunch. The Facebook post read, “This group loves to serve its CFISD
family. That’s the way they all became the Board-y Bunch.”

                                                                                               (Tips–p. 4)
Tips for Activities - Texas Association of School Boards

Dalhart ISD
Signs around Dalhart and a newspaper article publicly thanked the board members for their service
to the community. The district’s food service company presented the board with a gift basket. Dalhart
Elementary provided fruit and veggie trays and a number of thank-you cards. The junior high school
provided a movie/snack basket for each member, and the high school provided finger foods: pizza,
brownies, little smokies, and other treats. Trustees also received framed certificates.

DeSoto ISD
Each campus presented the board members with gifts and posters at the January board meeting.
Days before the meeting, the superintendent asked board members (1) If they were a super-hero,
which one would they be? and (2) How would this hero relate to them personally and in educational

During the board meeting, the superintendent read each response, presented them with certificates,
super-hero gadgets, and introduced them as their favorite super-hero. The board members selected
an array of heroes for various reasons, but each circled back to the value of education and what’s best
for the students in DeSoto ISD.

In addition, the district posted messages of thanks on school marquees, websites, and in a press
release to local newspapers. The school board received a proclamation from the City of DeSoto during
a City Council meeting in January.

Farmersville ISD
In honor of Farmersville ISD school board members, the administration staff cooked a nice dinner and
campuses provided gifts to each trustee. They received personalized mugs, a calendar created by
students and staff, and journals. Students also prepared artwork for the boardroom and displayed the
TASB graphics on the district web page. One board member even noted that a parent called him to
thank him for his service on the board. Now, that’s a nice surprise.

Fort Stockton ISD
Each campus ran a thank-you scroll on the campus marquee during the month of January and the
newspaper ran an ad in each weekly edition. On the night of the January meeting, board members
walked into the boardroom decorated with all kinds of super-hero paraphernalia, including a life-size
super-hero cutout, a personalized picture with the member’s head superimposed on a super-hero
body, a steel tumbler, a cake decorated with the official graphic, and a tray full of cookies, each deco-
rated with a popular super-hero logo.

                                                                                                 (Tips–p. 5)
Tips for Activities - Texas Association of School Boards

Hidalgo ISD
Hidalgo ISD celebrated School Board Recognition Month
by having each campus adopt a school board member.
During the month of January, students learned about their
adoptive board member and were visited by that trustee.
The campus also was fully decorated to celebrate the
school board members. At the end of January, the cam-
puses and district held a banquet for board members.
Each principal spoke about his or her adoptive board
member and presented gifts.

During campus visits, the students and the teachers did
the following:
    • Assemblies
    • Breakfast/Luncheon (coordinated by high school culinary art program)
    • Student-led school tour
    • Performances by school mariachi group
    • Each class made a gift for the board members.
    • A surprise hall parade was coordinated so that the board member could walk through the hall as
      the students cheered.

For the banquet, super-hero masks were created so they could be worn for a group picture.

Humble ISD
At the January school board meeting, the superintendent thanked trustees for their hours of service
and dedication. He introduced a student-produced video of students from across the district, sing-
ing and dancing to the lyrics of “Thank You for Being a Friend.” The video was produced in Advanced
Audio Visual Production at Kingwood High School.

Board members received a commemorative book featuring photos of trustees at different events, as
well as notes and artwork submitted by elementary and middle school students.

Fifth graders from one elementary school drew a portrait of each school board member. Under the di-
rection of the school art teacher, students studied Picasso. They studied different styles of eyes, noses,
mouths, and ears and his way of simply drawing a face. The students did realistic drawings first, then
practiced drawing a Picasso face and ended with their finished watercolor portraits. The artists pre-
sented their drawings of each board member who were touched by the individual efforts and personal-
ized gifts.
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Tips for Activities - Texas Association of School Boards

High school student leaders acknowledged all that the school board does in service to students. Stu-
dent representatives from each school introduced themselves and made a presentation. Association of
Texas Professional Educators (ATPE) officers expressed appreciation for the school board on behalf of
all ATPE members in Humble ISD. FFA student officers from across the district talked about FFA and
what participation in the program provides for students, and presented student-created gifts to each
board member. Presentations also were made from the Office of County Commissioner Precinct 4 and
from the Office of Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector.

Little Elm ISD
Little Elm ISD celebrated at the January board meeting by honoring trustees with gifts, presentations,
and well-deserved accolades. “They do so much more than people realize,” the superintendent said.
“The time that goes just into learning to be a board member and all the laws and the things that come
with it, not to mention the time to go to board meetings, to attend national conferences and state con-
ferences, then all the reading that they have to do and the required training that they have to do. Local
school boards are probably the purest form of democracy we have and this community is really, really
blessed to have the folks who are serving on this board.”

Board members received gift bags filled with various goodies, most notably capes that were hand-
made by the communications and athletic department secretary. Their beauty showed that they
weren’t just bought at the cape shop.

Longview ISD
Students did some creative things for School Board Recognition Month. Hudson PEP Elementary
made a video that was shared at the January board meeting. Bramlette Elementary gave a PowerPoint
presentation along with customized comic books for each board member. Ware Elementary drew each
member as a super-hero and included a poem, and Johnston-McQueen Elementary also depicted the
board members as super-heroes.

Marshall ISD
The district had a wonderful month celebrating, and staff and students organized a number of things to
make sure the board felt special in January:
   • A local radio station was asked to make announcements during the morning show urging the
     community members to thank their local trustees when they saw them around town.
   • Students at every campus were filmed to create a "Thank You" video to show at the board meet-
     ing. It also featured images of school marquees with board appreciation messages. Each cam-
     pus was asked to create artwork and posters to decorate the hallway of the boardroom in the
     district administration building.

                                                                                                (Tips–p. 7)
Tips for Activities - Texas Association of School Boards

   • Local community members who play an active role in the district were invited to attend the board
     meeting and show their appreciation to trustees. The district passed a bond in 2015 to build new
     schools and it was a total community partnership. In a way, the January meeting was a celebra-
     tion of not only what board members had accomplished during the year but the community as a
   • City Council PTA hosted a reception honoring trustees before the board meeting and presented
     them with the governor’s proclamation.
   • Super-Hero capes were made that featured school colors and the first initial of the District ("M").
     They were presented during the board meeting and board members were asked to wear them
     the rest of the evening. Former board members who attended the meeting were recognized. The
     oldest living former board member was in attendance. Ernest Marshall served on the Marshall
     board from 1958 to 1983.
   • The education foundation put together a goodie basket.
   • The superintendent and board president went on the morning talk show of the local radio station
     the day after the board meeting to discuss School Board Recognition Month and action taken at
     the board meeting the night before.

Mesquite ISD
The Mesquite ISD boardroom in January was decorat-
ed wall to wall with posters, banners, and other artistic
creations made by the district’s students to show their
appreciation for the school board. As part of the dis-
trict’s recognition, the Mesquite Education Association
board president presented a super-hero costume for
each board member to wear.

A high school senior addressed the board on behalf
of the district’s 40,000-plus students. She praised the school board for providing her and her fellow
students with the tools they need to succeed and achieve their goals.

Elementary students adorned themselves with super-hero outfits and read a statement that defined
what a super-hero is and thanked the school board for being their super-heroes.

Meyersville ISD
The district celebrated School Board Recognition Month with the Super-Heroes for Schools theme at
the regular board meeting in January. A “super-hero” sub-sandwich dinner was prepared and students
decorated cookies with a super-hero “M.” Water bottles with a mini-super-hero cape and goodie bags
were given to members. Every class participated in an activity—some wrote acrostic poems of the
                                                                                                (Tips–p. 8)

board members’ last names, using a super-hero font for the lettering. Some classes wrote a poem and
took pictures using super-hero photo props. Board members and the superintendent also posed for a
picture using these props.

Mineral Wells ISD
Mineral Wells ISD wanted to recognize the superhuman feats its board members perform every day
to advocate for its children and public schools. The Mineral Wells Texas Classroom Teachers Associa-
tion treated the board to an “Out of this World” barbecue feast. Mindful that knowledge is power, the
librarians dedicated seven extraordinary books to each campus in honor of the dynamic school board

Elementary students transformed the entire boardroom into a “Super-Hero Headquarters” and present-
ed board members with their own cape and super-hero character. Each board member was treated
to a basket of super-human treats stuffed with gifts, snacks, and special messages from the students.
There was a collaborative effort from all campuses to create a super-hero themed video that expressed
students’ sincere gratitude for the board’s amazing feats of courage and nobility, making them a super-
hero in the eyes of Mineral Wells ISD.

Nazareth ISD
The district has used TASB materials for years. Teachers and students work to recognize the board in
a very personal way, which is one of the true advantages of a small school and community. While not
totally with the theme “Super-Heroes for Schools,” this clip was used to help celebrate School Board
Recognition Month at an appreciation banquet just before the January board meeting.

Ore City ISD
The elementary school dove right in the board appreciation month:
   • Students made individual thank-you cards for each board member.
   • Students made posters and huge thank-you cards for display in the boardroom.
   • They gave each board member a huge popcorn container filled with goodies you would get at
     the theater and included two movie tickets—because they are “stars!”
   • They made a huge card with super-hero bodies and the faces of each board member was as-
     signed to a super-hero.

The middle school campus presented the board with a gift card to a local restaurant and a video was
made of students and staff members showing posters and singing along with the Pharrell Williams’
hit, “HAPPY!” The high school campus gave each board member a big basket filled with goodies that
included homemade lemon curd. To top things off, the central office staff gave the board members a
polo shirt and presented them with the super-hero certificates from TASB.
                                                                                              (Tips–p. 9)

Pearland ISD
Pearland ISD recognized its trustees for their year-
round commitment to provide quality public educa-
tion. Trustees were asked about their experience
serving on the board. Here is a sampling of what was

“I really believe we get strength from our diversity. We
are united by the reality that working harmoniously
together we can make a difference in the quest to create world-class schools in Pearland ISD.”

“Working with my fellow board members to help ensure our district reaches the goals we have set has
been a great experience. It’s like having a second family. Like any family, we aren’t perfect and don’t
always agree on everything, but we accept and appreciate each other for the unique individuals we are
and treat each other with respect.”

“We stand together to ensure our students have access to the best public school education. We even
have fun along the way. I have enjoyed working with these exceptional individuals to make a difference
in our community.”

Pearland ISD proudly honored these super-heroes—the seven school board members who selflessly
serve on behalf of students.

Pflugerville ISD
In January, Pflugerville ISD board members were honored by the city and community at Pfluger Hall.
The kids were a big reason why the event was a success. There were lots of smiles, handshakes, and
warm greetings from an array of stakeholders and students! A middle schooler brought a stem rose
and his high school sister a big red apple.

The board recognition reception was a community invite. A delicious “smorgasbord of yummies” was
prepared and served by high school culinary arts classes, and the high school jazz band performed
musical selections on stage. The mayor attended the January board meeting to read a resolution
declaring January 2016 as School Board Recognition Month in Pflugerville. He urged all community
members to recognize their hard work for the success of every student.

Poteet ISD
The district used the “Super-Hero” theme from TASB and ran with it. Each campus made banners
and put them up during the board meeting. Each board member received a super-hero name and the
                                                                                             (Tips–p. 10)

technology team developed each trustee’s face into a
super-hero. A special edition of the Poteet ISD Pride
newsletter was created for each of them.

All of the super-heroes with their pictures were com-
bined into one special edition paper. In the newsletter,
trustees were spotlighted and they answered ques-
tions about who they are and why they serve. A framed
picture of each board member as a super-hero was
presented and each board member’s chair had the
super-hero cape to go with its super-hero name.

Board members were given super-hero sugar cookies, and the strawberry festival association gave
each trustee a bag with a T-shirt and other goodies. In addition, the ACE program presented different
gifts made by students and members were highlighted on the PA TV as students explained why they
thought board members had super powers.

San Marcos CISD
San Marcos CISD students from around the district used this year’s theme of “Super-Heroes for
Schools” to make appreciation gifts for the trustees. These were presented to them at a reception held
in January.

Some campuses purchased super-heroes themed books for the school libraries and made special do-
nation bookplates in honor of the various trustees. Two of the campuses made super-hero calendars
using either student handprint art or students and staff members who were dressed as super-heroes.
One school gave campus T-shirts to each trustee, and others presented student art.

Smithville ISD
Students and staff from across the district expressed their support and gratitude to trustees in January
for generously sharing their time and energy on behalf of the community’s schoolchildren.

The primary school presented board members with a jumbo Tiger chocolate bar and a giant appre-
ciation card signed by all the students and staff. Elementary students played a YouTube appreciation
video for each board member and provided the members with individualized framed acrostic poems.
Students assigned characteristics for each letter of all the trustees’ last names, along with a certificate
with a QR Code that links to the video.

                                                                                                  (Tips–p. 11)

Junior high students delivered a creative and colorful banner and then the high school performed an
ensemble. Following the ensemble, students presented each board member with a beautiful framed
sheet of music (Smithville school song) with his or her initial in the middle of the picture.

High school students brought each member a basket of healthy snacks, the Fighting Tiger T stained-
glass night-light, and the Child Nutrition Department created a personalized bucket of homemade
salsa and chips.

Spring Hill ISD
Campuses did the following activities in honor of the
school board:
   • Provided personalized super-hero cape
   • Student artwork on place mats and posters
   • Banners signed by students and staff
   • Dinner and cupcakes
   • Reception for the public to attend
   • Small gift card
   • Personalized pen, pencil, and paper set

Texas Education Agency
TEA posted a tweet about School Board Recognition Month, and it was the number one most engag-
ing tweet from Texas government Twitter accounts that day.

Tx Education Agency@teainfo Jan 5. Happy School Board Recognition Month! We thank the more
than 7,100 elected officials serving Texas students. #txed

Within its first day, the tweet received:
   • 26 favorites
   • 70,096 people potentially reached

Tornillo ISD
The district celebrated Board Appreciation Month in numerous ways:
   • Posters were created and displayed all over campuses and at the January board meeting.
   • Messages were displayed on bulletin boards all over the district.
   • Information was carried in the West Texas Courier.
   • An online banner was placed on the district website.

                                                                                            (Tips–p. 12)

Waller ISD
The district created terrific posters and artwork that were shared with cam-
puses and the community for School Board Recognition Month. They were
thanked for their countless contributions as advocates for public education
and proudly saluted these school board super-members for being super-
heroes for schools, and for their year-round volunteer commitment.
Watch the Waller ISD School Board Appreciation Month video HERE.

Willis ISD
A press release announcing School Board Recognition Month was posted
on the district website in early January and made available to local media.
It can be accessed here. It was also linked on the district Facebook page
along with the “Super-Heroes” clip art provided by TASB. It too was used
on Facebook and in the district website photo shuffles.

A “Super-Heroes” video was created and shown during the January board meeting and was then
posted on the district website. The video also was uploaded on the district Facebook page.

Elementary students sang songs and wrote notes to the board members. Campuses presented them
with various small tokens of appreciation. Information concerning school board recognition during the
January board meeting was included in a post-meeting press release. It can be accessed here.

                                                                                             (Tips–p. 13)
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