As much as Baby Showers and can a joyful, and thankful experience, let's be honest, they can also be a tad bit awkward! Maybe that is just me, but I have a bit of a hard time not being awkward when events are based around me. It is just a personal social anxiety I have for everything to be about me. I much prefer to plan a party for someone then to have someone else plan a party for me!
With that being said, an added complication arises anytime you add students to ANY event process! For those of you who do not know, I am a middle and high school science teacher. I have the sweetest, most thoughtful students. Ever since they found out that I was pregnant in January, they haven't stopped asking me when my baby shower would be! They have been begging me to have a baby shower in class.
For anyone having a Baby Shower with their students, here are a few tips and tricks that I learned along the way through this somewhat bumping process.
1. Try to do the baby shower during school hours but not at a time that disrupts instructional time.
Having a student plan a shower for you at their house, church, etc. makes things way more complicated. Most of my kids can't drive yet, and I don't want parents inconvenienced because their child planned something and didn't let them know where they needed to be and be picked up, etc. Also, I didn't want students who couldn't find a ride left out. I talked with my principal and we decided to tell the students that if they wanted to plan a baby shower, it could be done the day before spring break during the last 45 minutes of school. It was so much less stressful to do the shower at school then elsewhere. Also, the last hour before spring break is bound to be a hard to time to give meaningful classroom instruction!
2. Have one responsible student in charge and get another faculty member to supervise your lead student.
I choose one student who was responsible and organized to be in charge. I told them, if "ya'll want to do a shower, that is fine, but you need to step up and lead". My students wanted ME to plan them a baby shower, and I was not about to do that. A). that is awkward, and B). That is Super awkward. I also asked a friend of mine who teaches at the school to be the student's person of contact to approve all plans. That took a ton of weight off of my shoulders.
3. Be aware that you will have to help with set up and planning.
As much as the students were in charge of the shower themselves, I definitely got asked to help out a ton! Knowing that that will happen in advance makes it easier to be ok with. ESPECIALLY when you are dealing with Middle Schoolers! They don't know how to get ice at school, how to teach their peers a baby shower game, or whose refrigerators to put cupcakes in! The High Schoolers were a bit more independent, but I still needed to help guide things so that they went smoothly. It can be weird to be planning and organizing at your own shower, but it is easier if you chance your mindset. I made sure to think of this as me helping them celebrate the future of Oliver rather then me throwing myself a party.
4. Be aware that this will be many of your students first chance to attend a baby shower.
Most of my students had never been to a baby shower, which made this so much fun for them!! They have heard their mom's and aunts going to baby showers, and wanted to be apart of the fun. My students shower for me was about allowing them to celebrate and enjoy the novelty of an infant and the joys that are associated with babies!
In the end, everything was great and they had a wonderful time. We played baby food eating games, the "baby" pin game and stuffed our faces with cupcakes and meatballs (South Carolina tradition :). They were so sweet and loving towards Oliver. It wasn't the way most showers come to fruition, but anytime you are working with students, things will not be normal...
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I am 25 years old with a 2 year old son and a wicked handsome husband living in Birmingham, Alabama.