Tam had its first Unity Day on Friday, October 27. Lunch was extended by ten minutes and four different categories of activities were spread out around campus: food trucks and music were in front of the school, staff versus student basketball game took place in Gus Gym, art supplies were provided in Orange Court, and zen activities, such as making stress balls and yoga, were in and around room 2020.
According to Principal J.C. Farr, the four-part structure was meant to appeal to different parts of the student body. “With the zen, we are hoping that students take advantage of the opportunities to participate in yoga and mindfulness. The sporty is about… having an opportunity for teachers and staff to interact without it being in the classroom. The artsy is another way for students to de-stress…we feel that art is a way for kids to express themselves,” Farr said.
Student body president Robbie Samec stated that the purpose of the day was to try something new on campus and build community. “The goal was to create a day in which Tam students have the opportunity to spend time with each other on campus outside of the classroom setting. We saw Unity Days as an opportunity to allow students to de-stress and escape the routine of their week,” he said.
Freshman Abby Moll took advantage of the sporty activities. “I think it’s really fun and it’s really entertaining to see our teachers and our students collaborate together,” she said.
“It was peaceful so it wasn’t as crazy in contrast to what was going on with the food trucks,” Beca Whitaker said about the artsy activites. “It was a nice time to just sit back and relax.” Many students also commented that the food trucks were delicious though overpriced, and that the lines were too long.
The day was thought of by coordinators such as Samec as a test run for similar events in the future. “We weren’t expecting to full[y] achieve our goal. It was more an opportunity to gauge student interest and willingness to participate,” he said. “What we realized after the fact was that our plan was a little too spread out and that [the] schedule wasn’t set up just right. I think students were able to do something new and interesting during lunch which was a part of our goal, but there is definitely room to improve,” he said. Principal Farr was also tentative about declaring Tam Unity Day a success. “There are long lines which is a good and a bad sign. I know some students are still going off campus,” he said.
Samec explained that he would like to make improvements in three key areas for future Unity Days. He said he would like to “try and get more time. The extended lunch was great but it still didn’t feel like there was enough time to participate and take a moment.” Samec also plans to bring the different elements of the event closer together and get a more diverse range of food trucks.