MGCI students packed the gym with spirit on 6 and 7 February 2018 for MGCI Student Council’s (SAC) first ever pep rallies. On the first day, Grade 9 and 10 students participated during periods 2 and 3 respectively with Grade 11 and 12 students on the second day.

Students and teachers playing musical chairs. Photo: Matthew Tse

With the new house colour system in place, the pep rallies aimed to promote school spirit and encourage friendly competition between peers. Students were seated according to their house colour, and were encouraged to participate to win house points, Hershey’s chocolate bars, and $5 Tim Hortons gift cards.

At the rally, there were various games and activities that pitted students and teachers from the various houses against one another in an effort to earn points for their respective house. To begin, two participants were selected from each house to participate in a basketball 3-point shoot-out. After, students and teachers alike competed in vigorous rounds of musical chairs until a winner was decided. Volunteers from each house then raced to stack and unstack cups as fast as they could. Finally, students put their strength and teamwork to the test through tug of war.

The activities were accompanied with excitement and applause from the audience, who were cheering for their houses. Grade 10 student Sadia Siddique from the Green house said: “I felt like Garneau really came together at the pep rally. [SAC members] did a great job of getting the crowd going.”

At the end of the junior rallies, participants from each house competed against each other in a dance-off to conclude the event. The house that received the loudest cheers from the audience was deemed the winner.

The senior rallies were supposed to conclude with students representing their respective houses while challenging each other in the online trivia game “Kahoot”. However, technical issues prevented students from connecting online, forcing the game to end prematurely. Instead, a dance-off was also held.

Students were engaged and enthusiastic throughout the entirety of the rallies, accomplishing SAC’s goal of generating school spirit. Grade 12 student Zainab Alavi from the Green house said, “The event was overall really fun and engaging. I think it’s a really great way to start the new semester and amp up the school spirit!”

Students competing in a cup stacking race. Photo: Matthew Tse

SAC President Lisa Wang said, “The rationale behind having the pep rallies during class time is for all students to be involved. However since we aren’t able to fit all four grades on the gym bleachers at once, which was the original plan, we split it up into four separate pep rallies. It was more work, but paid off in having more students able to participate.”

During the rally, SAC members also featured upcoming SAC events and activities including Semi-Formal, the Valentine’s Day matchmaking quiz, International Show auditions, as well as discussing details regarding club registrations. SAC also introduced Nicole, a youth mental health worker from Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Office (TNO), who briefly spoke about various mental health programs available for high school students.

At the end of both pep rallies, each house racked up a fair amount of points. Green house came out on top, earning a combined total of 149 points from all four rallies followed by Red with 113, Blue with 101, and finally Yellow with 95.

Looking forward, Lisa said, “We’ll continue to incorporate the house colour system in future spirit events, and hopefully in an outdoor pep rally come the warm weather!”