Every year Robert Bateman Secondary School hosts a birthday celebration in honour of its namesake.
Organized and run by both junior and senior leadership student teams, the Bateman Birthday Bash carnival is one of the biggest events of the school year. On May 23, the day before Robert Bateman’s birthday, the first floor of the high school teemed with excitement. Despite the unwanted downpour, the event proved to be even more successful than that of the previous year.
As Grades 9 through 12 alike weaved their way through the crowd, the transformed first floor was filled with an energetic, carnival atmosphere. Food, ranging from hot dogs and chips to popcorn and cotton candy, quickly disappeared in students’ hands while they spent their carnival tickets during their lunch, third period, and the beginning of their last class. With a dunk tank outside, various inflatable attractions, and a number of carnival games, the Bateman Birthday Bash had it all.
Bateman’s LINK Crew even brought over Grade 5 students during second block as well as Grade 8s from Clayburn Middle. A group of Grade 5 students from Margaret Stenerson politely answered some questions, though they eagerly awaited the interview’s end. All but one of the four boys and girls had never been to the high school before; and what a great first impression for a potential future school to make.
In a chorus of energy, the grade fives answered questions as if they had rehearsed before coming. Is this your first time at Bateman? Are you liking it here? A long, dragged out “Yes.” What’s your favourite part about the carnival? A moment of thought and then a loud exclamation: “Everything!”
Although the carnival was run for enjoyment, it also had a greater purpose. The Birthday Bash allowed for Bateman to begin to introduce future students to the school in such a way that they left with not only excitement and anticipation, but already beginning to feel comfortable in the place where they will spend their last four years of education; and therefore, building a stronger sense of school community.