More than 2,000 paper leaves adorn the hallways of Memorial High School, brightening up the walls with autumnal hues of green, yellow, red, and orange this week, a part of the school’s community-focused spirit week.
Each leaf is inscribed with the name of a student, and color coded by grade level: green for freshmen, yellow for sophomores, red for juniors, and orange for seniors. Students from several different clubs came together to cut, label, and hang each leaf in the school, highlighting the importance of collaboration, Multicultural Services Coordinator Andrea Jones said.
“It’s important that students have their own unique clubs and spaces, but there is also room for us to be united as one,” Jones said.
Memorial staff and students also came together to design a Thankful Wall in the cafeteria, where a student artist painted a tree and branches along the windows. Here, students and staff can decorate a paper leaf sharing what they are thankful for, and add it to the branches. During lunch students can also write teachers a Thankful Gram, a special note of gratitude that will be hand-delivered to them.
Throughout the week students and staff are showing off their Spartan pride with themed outfit days: Team Tuesday jersey day, Wacky Wednesday, and Throwback Thursday. Next week will kickoff with Monochromatic Monday and Spartan Spirit on Tuesday.
Everyone is joining forces for the annual school Thanksgiving Drive, collecting non-perishable foods for Memorial families over the holiday. In previous years, only one club would lead the drive. But this year, Jones encouraged all students to join, regardless of what after school activities or social group they are a part of.
“We have families in our school that may not have access to a big Thanksgiving meal,” Jones said. “This school-wide approach means everyone is involved. The main goal is building community in the student body by giving them a project to achieve together, as a whole school.”
Anyone in the community–not only staff and students–can support the Thanksgiving Food Drive by dropping off dry goods such as rice, pasta, corn muffin mix, snacks, and canned fruit in the Welcome Center at Memorial High School.
“We’re all part of the same tree,” Jones said. “We branch off, but we’re all still connected."