7 Steps That Help Principals Rock Any Teacher Retirement Party

Saying goodbye isn’t easy, so why not make it more fun?

How Principals Can Rock the Teacher Retirement Party

A teacher retirement party is a great way to honor the service of colleagues and build community traditions. Start planning now to make sure you craft a thoughtful celebration. Teacher retirement parties are also important school-culture-building moments. So you want to do it right.

1. Consider the retiring teacher’s emotions.

The tone of the party should be joyful, but remember that retirement can be a bittersweet time. Some retirees have mixed feelings because not everyone is ready to leave a beloved teaching position. As such, a good retirement party helps a person transition to the next phase of their life. The person you are celebrating should walk away from the event feeling appreciated, loved, and also very proud.

2. Images bring a teacher’s life into focus.

Together with family and friends, gather old pictures of the retiree. Print them and hang them on a clothesline around the room so colleagues and friends can view them and reminisce. Bonus: Yearbook pictures are a hilarious and moving way to see how the person you are honoring has changed over the years.

3. Give a nod to the fashion of the retiring teacher.

Everyone has a trademark item of clothing. Does the person you are celebrating have a passion for hats, wacky ties, or fancy shoes? With a little heads up and organization, you can create a moving tribute to your retiree and also have a little fashion-forward fun.

4. Include a teacher’s special guests.

Don’t limit guests to just current co-workers. Include former administrators, faculty, and students, too. In addition, consider inviting family. If a larger party makes sense, put the word out to your alumni community. Be sure to have name tags for everyone present because you don’t want to burden the retiree with having to remember the thousands of students they have taught! Also consider creating a hashtag for the party. That way, you make it easier to share photos on social media.

5. Crowdsource an ultimate bucket list for the retiring teacher.

You’ve heard about a bucket list. Why not crowdsource ideas to maximize the fun? Create a station for colleagues to suggest activities for the new retiree! Bonus: Read them aloud during the party for some laughs.

6. Poems make a teacher retirement party even more meaningful.

Retirement poems are also a staple of this kind of celebration. So get some heads together to write a personalized poem for the person you are honoring. Afterward, collect and print any poems read and gift them to the retiree.

7. Personalized details help set the tone.

Look at this adorable idea! Personalize this centerpiece a little more by offering the favorite snacks of the person being celebrated. Make sure you save one for the honoree!

A good cake is not only delicious but can also keep the party vibe lighthearted and fun.

Finally, consider creating a party favor celebrating the retiree to be gifted to partygoers! This is a sweet and also very thoughtful way to remember the person you are celebrating.

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Anne Rubin

Posted by Anne Rubin

Anne Gomez Rubin has been a dean and teacher in Minneapolis, MN, since 2016. She tweets about education, intersectional feminism, and tacos on Twitter at @annegrubin .

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