The Junior Class Are The Spirit Week Champions

Urvi Bhatnagar

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What is spirit week? According to Mrs. Peggy Panker, fellow teacher and advisor of spirit week, spirit week is a time of the year where the grades come together for competitions as each grade competes with the other grades. However, the week is meant to be all in good fun. The goal is to unify the classes and to make friendships across classes instead or just your own grade. This week was implemented to ¨promote the positive experiences of Nanuet Senior High School,¨ as stated by Mrs. Panker.

Spirit, however, is an aspect that Mrs. Panker hopes to be prominent through the entire school year; not just this one week. Spirit week has not existed the whole time that Mrs. Panker has been a teacher or the dean at Nanuet; however, the school previously used to have an event called ¨Color Wars or Class Wars¨. Yet, because war is a  a critical term, some teachers called for change, thus bringing the name change to ¨Spirit Week.¨ The event was removed for a short period of time, but was then brought back about 15 years ago. Since then, Mrs. Panker believes,  it has evolved. ¨The hallway decorating, for example,” she noted, “is big and we do have a lot more students than in the past. She also stated that for the teachers “it is a lot of students to oversee and keep safe during the various activities.”

But Spirit Week is more than just competition; it’s about the activities and the enjoyments. Students love spirit week and take pride in it. Spirit week, for students, is a big deal. Students develop a winning spirit and try to help their class do better than the other grades. It is also hectic for teachers, advisors, and students during that week. But, for the most part, the week brings positivity. Mr. Panker said, ¨Obviously, things happen, where people don’t follow the rules or get upset and get too emotional, but that is a small percentage of things that happen. But I think for the most part the kids really like it, and it showcases not only the athletics, but also the academics and the arts.¨ Last year, the video game component was added so that kids who have different interests can feel like they can be a part of the week, even if they aren´t the greatest sports player.

Each grade has its own student senate, where the President of the grade and other members of its senate work together to shape spirit week the best they can. Each grade also takes on a theme, which is approved by the senate, and decided by the grade. This is decided based on the grade color and the first letter of their grade. This year, the Freshmen were ¨Fairy Tale Freshmen¨ (blue), the Sophomores were ¨Speedway Sophomores¨ (red), the Juniors were ¨Jurassic Juniors¨ (green), and the Seniors were ¨Slam Dunk Seniors¨ (orange). Overall, the Juniors came in first place, Seniors second, Freshman third, and Sophomores fourth. These results excited many, and devastated others. But everyone had fun.

. The week’s events and winners were as follow:
• Monday: Pajama Day (Seniors) & Hallway Decorating (Freshmen)
• Tuesday: Dress-up Day (Seniors)/Academic Competition (Juniors) & Super Mario Bros (Juniors)/Basketball (Seniors)
• Wednesday: America Day (Sophomores) & Hallway Cleanup
• Thursday: Black and Gold Day (Juniors)/Volleyball Competition (Juniors) & Speedball (Seniors)
• Friday: Class Spirit Day & Relay Races (Seniors)/Crab Soccer (Juniors)/Human Foosball (Juniors)/Class Free Throws (Seniors)/Announcement of Winners

Spirit Week also included several other events such as the creation of class T-shirts and banners. The T-shirt design and the banner were both won by the Juniors. Additionally, the school participated in a Food and Coin Drive. These two activities ran throughout the entire week, and both had a charity component. For the Food Collection, all the food collected got donated to People to People, while the Coin collection allowed the grades to keep a third, a third goes to the Student Senate to help with school activities, and then the last third goes to Soup Angels. Soup Angels is a soup kitchen that Mrs. Rife of the music department coordinates with. In the Food Drive, each grade brought in non-perishable food items, while for the Coin Drive, grades brought coins or bills. The results were as follow:
• Food Collection: total of 1841 items from the grades; winner → Seniors (818 items brought)
• Coin Collection: total of $2,191.08 from the grades; winner → Sophomores ($660.79 collected)

Overall, Spirit Week is a week that is exceedingly competitive. And Spirit Week is thoroughly enjoyed by the students and the staff, and continues to reveal the spirit of Nanuet Senior High School and its students. Congratulations to the grades this year, and good luck to the ones next year!

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