Milli Vanilli is my favorite day of the year. It is the final culmination of a year's worth of activities for classes to earn spirit points in hopes to win the highly coveted spirit trip to Six Flags Magic Mountain. Each class spends hours in the months prior to the competition choreographing dances all based around our school year's theme. This year's theme was Back in Blue. Classes were given different decades and songs chosen had to fit into that theme. They had to mash a variety of songs together under 4 minutes and come up choreography that could incorporate as many students within the class as possible. The school holds a special assembly and each class performs in the gymnasium. Local celebrity judges come in to judge the event and determine the overall score.
The collaboration, creativity, and dedication that takes place to pull this off is pretty remarkable. Not to mention, this experience unifies the class in a way that wouldn't happen otherwise. They are coming together around a common goal and having a blast doing it... a fantastic way to build a positive school culture!
This is all fantastic, but let me tell you what I love about these days. The staff dances too! Staff members sign up for different choreographed dances to participate in and they dance their hearts out for the students. It's crazy, hilarious, and kids LOVE it! To see the students faces and hear the cheers when their favorite staff members walk out onto stage is priceless. The excitement and energy that fills the gym is palpable. Students love to see their favorite teachers and staff members willing to risk looking silly for them. It is a a bit of a time commitment to come together and practice, but it also a chance to meet and collaborate with teachers that you may not normally get a chance to. At the end of the school year and all the craziness that comes with testing, special events, and lack of sleep it is refreshing to have a reason to be silly and carefree and come together as a school.
Creating opportunities to be collaborative, creative, and just plain silly is incredibly important in building a positive school culture. Milli Vanilli is the perfect example of a tradition that does just that. Nothing quite compares to the electricity that fills the gym when 2000 students and 100 staff members risk silliness to come together and dance their hearts out! Girl....you know it's true! (sorry, couldn't resist!)
Tech Integration Specialist in Southern Oregon and author of Make Learning Magical. I'm passionate about finding innovative ways to transform teaching and create unforgettable experiences in the classroom.