The last day of classes before Thanksgiving break included a big mix-up at Windsor Elementary School – on purpose.

Mix It Up at Lunch Day is an international campaign under the auspices of an organization called Teaching Tolerance that encourages students to cross social boundaries.

Teaching Tolerance provides free resources to educators—teachers, administrators, counselors and other practitioners—who work with children from kindergarten through high school. Educators use the materials to supplement curriculum and create civil and inclusive school communities where children are active participants.

The program emphasizes social justice and anti-bias, but Windsor’s way of doing it is more subtle than overt, not to mention just plain fun!

Classroom activities ranged from Thanksgiving-themed windsocks to tie-dyed socks for footwear.

“Rather than do it at lunchtime like the national model suggests, we mix up the whole school and every classroom has kids K-5 in it,” said Windsor principal Scott Nichols.

On Monday, students in all grade levels drew teacher names at random to see where they’d relocate during the mix-up. Two lucky students drew wildcards that granted them the privilege of going wherever they chose. Then, on Tuesday right after lunch the fruit basket was upset.

Elementary teaching credentials authorize teachers for instruction at each grade level, but all of them at the same time?!

Windsor’s in the midst of its centennial year, and though Mix It Up at Lunch Day has only been part of the last few years of that long history, it fits right in as a special event in a special year. Already we’ve reported on a milestone art project that also involved all grade levels there.

“We’ve got plans for the 100th day of school, too,” said Nichols. The 100th day of every school year is a big deal in elementary schools across the district. It ties in naturally with math instruction. Imagine when it’s the 100th day of the 100th year!

We’ll check back in February to see how Windsor imagines it.

Photos of Mix-Up Day at Windsor Elementary School

Mix It Up at Windsor

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