Oakton Outlook

Competition between the teachers: pies and cookies and more!

Teachers get together every month to take time to talk and get to know each other

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While it is well established that students love getting together and sharing food, do we pause to consider the staff and teachers? We’ve all seen posts about Friendsgiving, or festive Christmas parties for teens, but don’t adults need the same type of social interaction?
Oakton’s staff work to create better bonds with each other through having a party once a month, although the department hosting it changes. It’s gotten to the point where specific departments always claim a month to host, like the school counseling hosting a baseball themed get together in September, the science department claiming the spooky Halloween breakfast in October, and Health and PE having a March Madness-themed barbeque. These department-held get togethers offer the staff a way to get together even if they don’t normally see each other.
Every November, the administration has been known to buy a Thanksgiving lunch for all of the teachers. A tradition that started four or five years ago, however, was the annual teacher pie contest. There have been panels of judges giving a variety of awards, like “Best Pumpkin Pie” or “Best Nontraditional Pie”. According to Ms. Rodeheaver, “Dr. Banbury was very insistent that it had to be a pie, so even though I made cheesecakes, they were not allowed for the competition.” The Thanksgiving celebration is a great way for the teachers and administration to get together and celebrate, and to have delicious food.

It’s fun to see people’s skills, like baking, that you don’t normally know about.”

— Ms. Rodeheaver

The winner of the pie contest has the all the fame and glory until the next year’s pie competition. This year, the contest was “toned down from years prior”, according to Ms. Rodeheaver. In the past, some teachers have played to the judges strengths, like Mr. Full, who made peanut butter pie due to strategic planning. Mrs. Fridley, the Special Ed department chair, has earned the reputation being of an excellent baker. This year, Ms. Calvello also made a beautiful pie with an animal made out of pie crust. Ms. Rowley, the librarian, is also known as a very talented baker through baking treats for the staff for various events.
In December, the staff has a holiday cookie competition as well, but not to the same level of competition as the pie contest in November.
While it may take more work to coordinate when to meet and what to bring, having the opportunity to meet together is something all the staff at Oakton appreciated. “I think it’s fun because everyone is happy, and we’re talking about things that aren’t school,” said Ms. Rodeheaver. Even if the holiday season is over, there is still reason to enjoy each other’s company!

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Competition between the teachers: pies and cookies and more!