Although Thanksgiving was last week, it's still a big topic of conversation at The Renaissance International School, because our Thanksgiving Feast is always one of the best days of the entire year. Everyone at school - from the shortest to the tallest - is involved in preparing for this special day.

 

 

PreschoolThanksgivingFeast

 

A month or so before the event, teachers and staff are already meeting to plan and taking inventory of supplies. Do we have enough plates? silverware? napkins? Students then start to create table decorations and name cards in their art classes.

 

 

Some of the oldest students in the school create a seating chart as soon as the RSVPs begin to trickle in. They first determine how many tables are needed and then work at assigning each person to a table. This process is incredibly complicated! The students first need to solicit information from teachers about allergies and dietary restrictions, students with particular need of support, etc. They then work to fill each table with a balanced mix of students and adults from all classrooms and school environments, respecting the particular needs of each child so that everyone present is supported in having a successful experience on the day of the feast. What a task!

 

 

The week of the feast, each classroom organizes shopping trips to purchase supplies and then spends many hours cooking. It takes a long time to cook for 200 or so people!

ThanksgivingCooking

The day of the feast, the last items are cooked as Upper Elementary students set up for the feast outside. Tables and chairs are carried into the yard and table cloths spread.

ThanksgivingChairSetUp

 

Each spot is laid out with care, pitchers of water served, and cleaning stations set up. At just about 11:30am, the food starts arriving - mounds and mounds of delicious-smelling items! By noon, all the students are lining up so that they can enter the feast. This year, we were lucky enough to be joined by a dozen alumni who had come back to visit!

TheRenaissanceInternationalSchoolAlumni

As each table is called, they walk by one of the serving tables so that all the students can see the fruits of all their hard work. Finally, the whole community is seated, adults help to serve the food, and we all eat together.

ThanksgivingFeast Eating

Table conversation focuses on what we are thankful for. A sense of peace and togetherness settles on all gathered.  After enjoying all of the different dishes that had been prepared (including pie!), students and adults work together to clean up the whole event. What a marvelous community affair!