School Sleepover

A School Sleepover is the only time
You're expected to fall asleep in class

Sleepovers have always been popular with young people. There is something exciting about hanging out with your friends, staying up that bit later, midnight feasts and talking after lights out.

It didn't take long for enterprising Parent Teacher Associations and Organizations to cotton on to this and turn the idea into a fundraiser

A sleepover at your school is straightforward to organise and a surefire way to bring in the cash.

  • Pupils love it because they get to spend the night with their friends.
  • Parents love it because they get to have a free night to spend how they want.

This fundraiser requires a great group of parents or helpers. Although a core team will obviously need to be present all night and sleep at the school themselves not everyone needs to stay. It is often easiest to organise an evening and breakfast shift of different people.

It is of course vital to follow the schools child protection guidelines to the letter.

Your School Sleepover should be advertised well in advance. All pupils wishing to take part should return a form signed by their parents or guardian.This form should also contain clear details of any allergies or medical conditions and parents contact numbers in case of emergencies.

Here is a sample sleepover permission form

What the kids will need

On the evening of the sleepover all children will need to bring with them:

  • Sleeping Bags
  • Pyjamas
  • Dressing Gowns (or a jumper that can be worn over their PJ's)
  • Flannel and Towel
  • Toothbrush and Toothpaste
  • Cup, Bowl, Plate and Cutlery (if required)
  • Some younger children may also wish to bring a Teddie.

What will you do?

The timetable and agenda for the evening will vary according to individual circumstances. Some schools will organise an evening meal and breakfast. At others this is not possible and so a simple bedtime drink is offered instead.

To make the evening as much fun as possible its usual to get everyone together to:

Singing at school sleepove
  • Play Games
  • Sing Songs
  • Tell stories

Any other elements that can be added in all help make the evening a success.

Here is a sample agenda for a sleepover at school

Here is a list of  possible activities for a sleepover at school

Lights out

Most schools have gym mats which are ideal as a base for everyone to sleep on. It is also not uncommon for children to bring in camping beds and inflatable mattresses.

Sleepover at school

It is best to be strict about a time for lights out. OK there will inevitably be some mucking around and talking afterwards, but having some clear structure to the evening helps everyone. Actually children prefer nice clear guidelines

......and there needs to be a point when adult helpers can heave a sigh of relief and have a cuppa.

Next morning breakfast and collection

Sleepover at school breakfast

Waking up in the morning together is just as much fun.

A nice sizzling breakfast or perhaps croissants and jam with your friends is the perfect way to start the day.

In the morning its important that parents know that they must collect their children by an agreed time. A night without the kids is one thing but expecting a "lie in" as well is pushing it a bit too far!!

Hope your night at the school is a great success
Sweet dreams.

Wondering whether a School Sleepover might be right for you?

Here is a real life example sent in by TJ from Portland.

Our PTA put on a really successful school sleep-over. It was the first time we had tried this as a school fundraising idea.

We limited it to the older juniors so 9-11 year olds. Our school is girls only  so they all brought their pajamas, a dressing gown  and a sleeping bag. The event took place on a Friday night and we charged $25.00 per child. The parents seemed happy to pay for a "kid free night"  and several commented that it was a lot cheaper than a baby-sitter for an evening! I know that some of the dads got together to look after other brothers and sister and a whole troop of the moms went off for a "Mom's Night Out".

We had 34 girls staying in total but that included 2 older sisters who were daughters of a couple of PTA volunteers who were helping. We had five adult volunteers who stayed all evening with three staying overnight too. A fresh team of three arrived in the morning to help with breakfast.

On the day of the sleep-over the girls went home as normal after school. They then returned with their kit at 6pm.
We put all their kit in a classroom and got them organised in the school hall. We are quite lucky at our school as this is really quite big and has got a stage in it. We were quite fortunate as one of the parents is a scout troop leader and got them organised with some great games, which they all moaned about at first, but then got really competitive about. Amongst others they played duck, duck goose, blind man and the keys - one girl sits on a stool in the middle with a bunch of keys underneath her stool. The others sit in a circle around her and one person is selected to sneak up and steal the keys without the blind man hearing and pointing to her. We also did another great game I had not seen before which was really popular and caused shrieks of laughter. We had asked all the girls to bring along an empty cereal packet. They had to put this on the floor in front of them and without putting their hands or knees on the ground pick it up in their teeth. They then had to cut off the top inch of their box and do it again. This sounds easy but gets harder and harder until you end up with just a small rib of cardboard around the box. The girls really liked this one and we had some amazing splits from some of the more sporty girls.

We then went outside onto the sports field and  had a barbecue which we kept really simple with hot dogs and a cup of soup or beans.

We then took the girls into the school library where everyone settled down and we all watched a DVD of Mama Mia which was a big hit, with everyone singing along.

 After that we all had a bit  more singing when one of the other helpers got her guitar out. This did get a bit raucous towards the end however!

We knew that it would take them a while to settle down so we took them back into the hall where, as expected, they spent about 1/2 an hour working out who would be sleeping where.
Some had brought those camping mats and for the rest we laid out the padded gym mats. A couple  had inflatable mattresses but these were more trouble than they were worth. Lights out was at 10 pm and although there was a bit of noise for about 30 mins afterwards they weren't too bad.

In the morning the fresh shift of volunteers arrived, but most of the night shift stayed too. We had bought some big packs of cereal and everyone had cornflakes and then bread and jam which perhaps was not particularly inspiring but kept things nice and simple.

The parents were all very good and everyone had collected their girls by our  9.30am deadline

Our school sleep-over was really popular and I think the girls all really enjoyed themselves. The parents too seemed to be OK with the amount we charged. Apart from the barbecue equipment there wasn't much tidying up to do afterwards either. After costs we had raised about $600 and had a lot of fun. All in all a great school fund raising idea.

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