By Kathy Fallert; courtesy photos
Buffalo Ridge Elementary (BRE) had a dual goal – wanting to give multiple new fourth and fifth grade families a chance to connect and meet other parents and kids and wanting to create a new special tradition for the “upper grades” to celebrate and look forward to each year. What better way to do that than with a rockin’ sock hop?
Parent and event organizer Jennie Cartwright remarked, “Keeping the dance to these two grades really made for the perfect size and great ages for participating. We mainly wanted to get everyone together for a night of fun and an opportunity to welcome new families to the school. We felt it was important that the parents stay at the event to socialize with each other and also that it was only fourth and fifth graders without their siblings to get those kids connecting.”
The sock hop theme allowed kids and parents to dress up and have some fun. P.E. teacher Rhonda Gutierrez taught her classes some dance moves in the weeks prior to the event. The kids had a blast doing group dances to the hokey pokey, hand jive, cupid shuffle, bunny hop, the whip and even the nay nay. Cartwright said, “The DJ started off the party with mainly ‘50s sock hop music, but the kids took over in the second hour, requesting their own pop favorites, which they sang really loudly!”
Approximately 100 people attended with about 60 percent dressing to the theme. Parent Katie Abner commented, “I spoke to several new families at the event, and they appreciated the time to meet other parents, but it was also nice to watch the kids introducing their parents to their new classmates. The kids became the connectors.”
A handful of parents pulled the sock hop together with just a couple of weeks to plan. Kristen White and Maggie Penman made some impressive decorations, lined up the DJ and got the word out to students and families. Cartwright concluded, “I think we had a great turnout and response considering how last-minute the event was! We hope the fourth and fifth grade sock hop will continue each year as a fun BRE tradition!”