10 fun ways to increase school spirit

School Spirit Ideas: 10 Fun Ways to Build a Connected Campus

School spirit is the secret sauce that makes a school feel special. It’s all about that buzz in the hallways, the pride in the mascot, and the unity of the cheering crowd. More than just creating good vibes, school spirit brings together students, staff, and even families — making everyone feel like they’re part of a strong and connected community. This feeling of belonging also leads to increased achievement, involvement, and confidence. Students who show more school spirit perform better academically, are more socially and civically engaged, and are happier in general than their less-spirited peers. Boosting school spirit doesn’t need to be overwhelming or difficult. We’ve curated a list of some fun and simple school spirit ideas that can easily increase school spirit and transform your campus into a vibrant community.

10 Fun School Spirit Ideas:

1. Host spirit Fridays or themed spirit weeks at school

Embracing “Spirit Fridays” or themed weeks, adorned in school colors and attire, not only showcases unity but also invigorates the school environment. Creative endeavors like face-painting contests and themed days (e.g., pajama, wacky hair day) encourage individual expression while fostering collective spirit. These activities can be strategically placed during pivotal school moments and serve as a catalyst for boosting morale, enhancing student engagement, and cultivating a vibrant, cohesive community that takes pride in its identity.

2. Run themed monthly contests 

School spirit ideas like monthly t-shirt or door decorating contests can ignite a vibrant camaraderie and enhance school spirit. Encouraging students to contribute designs for school apparel and voting for favorites not only empowers their voices but also spotlights their creative prowess. Victorious classes can earn enticing rewards, bolstering enthusiasm and celebrating the artistic talents of students on campus.

3. Implement a points & rewards system

Significantly elevate school spirit by recognizing and incentivizing student involvement in school activities. A points and rewards system can recognize students for participation, attendance, and positive behavior, turning these actions into opportunities for earning points. These points can then be redeemed at the school store for food, drinks, merch, or supplies like pens and books. One of our partner schools, Sanger West High, embraces a points system and calls this “Minga Madness”, which happens every Thursday at lunchtime. The school sets up a little snack bar with a menu of items, or sometimes they’ll order pizza and give out slices to students for working hard in class. Instead of using cash, the kids use their Minga points. This approach not only fosters a sense of achievement but also strengthens the bond among students and their connection to the school.

4. Host school movie nights

Transform an ordinary evening into a magical movie night under the stars at your school. Project a family-friendly film on a large screen on the school grounds, creating a mini outdoor cinema. Encourage families to bring cozy blankets and lawn chairs, making it the perfect opportunity for the school community to bond over popcorn and laughter. This not only provides a relaxed setting for students, staff, and families to interact but also strengthens the sense of community and belonging.

5. Leverage digital platforms for community engagement

Using digital platforms, like Minga’s community module, can significantly enhance school spirit by facilitating seamless communication and engagement among students, staff, and parents. This digital approach enables the sharing of announcements, event details, and school achievements, fostering a connected and informed community that actively participates in school life. These student engagement tools often mirror the social interaction of platforms like Facebook — but within a more secure, private environment tailored for educational settings. This ensures sensitive student information remains protected while fostering a vibrant, interconnected school community.

6. Increase school spirit with fun swag

Elevate school pride with an array of custom swag items that students can’t resist. From small things like stickers, temporary tattoos, or car flags to bigger items like water bottles, sweatpants, or crewnecks. Many schools make these items available for purchase at the school store but you can even go one step further to increase participation by giving out swag for free in exchange for points. An easy way to do this is to allow kids to collect points for positive behavior and then once they’ve reached a certain number of points, they can grab an item for points instead of cash. This will not only encourage engagement but will also reinforce positive student conduct with tangible rewards.

7. Organize a talent show

Shine a spotlight on the diverse talents within your school by hosting an annual talent show. This event not only provides a stage for students to showcase their skills but also offers a unique way to celebrate the school’s culture and spirit. Encourage acts that pay homage to the school, such as performances of the school anthem or skits about school life, adding a personal touch that resonates with the audience.

8. Celebrate your school’s birthday

Mark your school’s founding with a grand birthday celebration, complete with cake, decorations, and fun activities. This annual event can become a cherished tradition, reinforcing the school’s heritage and fostering a deeper connection among the school community. It’s a day to reflect on past achievements, celebrate the present, and look forward to the future, all while boosting school spirit.

9. Teach students the history behind your school

Bring the history of your school to life through engaging storytelling and guest talks from distinguished alumni. Understanding the school’s origins, traditions, and notable achievements can instill a sense of pride and continuity among students. This educational journey not only enriches the school experience but also deepens students’ connection to their school, inspiring them to contribute to its legacy.

10. Schedule some community days 

Community days are proven to increase school spirit, making everyone feel like they are coming together for a meaningful cause. Consider blocking off some days in the school year that are dedicated to community service — where students, staff, and parents come together to give back. Whether it’s a neighborhood clean-up, tree planting, or a charity fundraiser, these activities highlight the school’s commitment to social responsibility. Participating in such initiatives not only strengthens the bond within the school but also positions the school as a positive force in the wider community.


School Spirit Ideas to Foster Engagement and Unity

Enhancing school spirit is essential for creating a connected and vibrant campus community. Initiatives such as Spirit Fridays, themed weeks, and creative contests like t-shirt and door decorating can significantly boost school morale. Additionally, incorporating a points and rewards system recognizes student participation, fostering a deeper sense of school pride. Hosting events like movie nights and talent shows further cultivates community engagement, making every student feel included and valued. These strategies not only enrich the school atmosphere but also promote greater academic and social involvement.

PS: Oh, and just for fun, here are 10 more ideas to supercharge school spirit!
  1. Funky Hair Day! You cannot go wrong with this one. Get students to post their funky hair on social media and give out prizes for the most outrageous look!

  2. Dress Up As Your Favorite Cartoon Character – Students will love this! Just make sure to let them know in advance so they can plan out their costumes and avoid stress.

  3. Musical Performance! Encourage students to showcase their best musical talents in front of the school.

  4. Cool Socks Day. You can’t go wrong with this one; it’s easy, affordable, and fun!

  5. Writing Contest. Have all students in English class submit their favorite piece of creative writing and award prizes to the winners.

  6. Sports Team Recognition! Have everyone dress in school colors and jerseys. But there’s a twist: every student on a sports team wears their craziest outfit (think tutus, bright colors, and party beads).

  7. Tie Dye Day! Encourage students to wear tie-dye, or take it a step further and organize a tie-dye shirt-making event.

  8. Tacky Tourist Day – Get students to dress in their favorite Hawaiian shirts, socks, and sandals (preteens love the chance to poke fun at vacation dads).

  9. Twin Day (or Triplets) – Have students team up with friends to wear matching outfits. Award gold, silver, and bronze medals for the best ensembles at the end of the day.

  10. Decades Day! Although students may not have experienced the iconic decades, they will love dressing up in vintage clothing.

Minga offers a campus management platform that can increase school spirit through a robust Community & Communications Module. To learn more, book a demo with a Minga solutions expert.


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