Teachers work around student excitement during homecoming

Homecoming week poses unique challenges to high school faculty.

Schedules are changed.

Students are charged up for the games.

The classroom is probably the last place they want to be.

For teachers, "it's a little hectic, I will admit," said Stephanie Harvey, Moffat County High School science teacher.

What do MCHS teachers do during homecoming week?

They adapt.

Harvey plans more hands-on activities for her students, who range from ninth- to 12th-graders, during homecoming week.

"They can be standing up, they can be roaming around, they can be doing (activities) because that's what they want to do anyway," she said.

Harvey makes the adjustment because she sees homecoming bringing students together.

"If everyone has the same goal, I think everyone can relate to one another no matter what group : they're in," she said.

She also believes homecoming can also increase students' investment in their school.

"I'd rather see some school spirit and some school involvement and ownership for a week" than students' lack of interest later in the year, Harvey said, adding that later on, students who are involved in homecoming may be more involved in school throughout the year.

Like Harvey, Kip Hafey, MCHS health and fitness teacher, tries to make room for students' excitement rather than squelching it.

He keeps his class upbeat and his students moving during homecoming week, he said, to make use of students' extra energy.

The week can be stressful for teachers. In addition to their normal classroom responsibilities, teachers often must chaperone special events, such as the homecoming dance or sporting events.

But there are payoffs, too.

"There are few things, such as homecoming, that just bring the entire student body together," he said, "because so many people are involved in it. It's not just one team."

The MCHS band takes part in the celebration, as do the high school's cheerleading and dance teams. The community also gets involved by entering floats and other attractions in the annual parade.

Homecoming week can be an exceptionally busy time for MCHS faculty.

"But it's also a great time," Hafey said.

Bridget Manley can be reached at 875-1795 or bmanley@craigdailypress.com

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