1. Leaping course
Set up a course outside using the sports equipment available at your school. Choose from bunny hops, long-jumps, leapfrogs, hurdles and space hopper races. Send a letter home explaining your chosen activity and include a sponsor form. On the day, give pupils a set amount of time to complete as many obstacles as they can. Make extra profits by inviting parents along to support the children and laying on refreshment stalls for them.
2. Class activities
Ask teachers to host a class challenge with the PTA donating prizes for the winners:
- F is for February: Make a list of different items beginning with ‘F’ (for February).
- Hold a leap-year themed Countdown challenge where pupils must get closest to the target number of 29 (or 366) using five given numbers and addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Adjust the difficulty according to age and ability.
- Hold a four times table speed challenge. Record the times and award prizes for the fastest and most enthusiastic.
3. Leap day festivities
Anthony, Texas claims to be the ‘leap year capital of the world’ and holds a four-day festival to celebrate the event. Celebrations are varied and in the past have involved a golf tournament, nature hike, 5K run, barbecue, wine tasting and parade. Pick one of these events and celebrate along with them – hold it on any day from 28 February – 1 March to coincide with the actual festival.
4. Frog Fair
The frog is the symbol of 29 February, so put the leap into leap year with a frog fair. Hold leapfrog competitions and activities such as frog-puppet making and frog origami. Serve amphibian-themed foods (green cupcakes anyone?).
5. Time capsule
Invite children to write letters to their future selves and pay 50p to have them put in a time capsule – a box to be kept somewhere safe until the following leap year when everyone can open and read their letters. Remember, not all year groups will still be at the school in four years.
Ask the parents
Appeal to parents by asking them to volunteer for the PTA for just two hours of their extra day – after all, they’ll get another 22 hours! If you’re not holding an event on the 29th, how about hosting an open DIY day, where parents can come and contribute their two hours by painting, mending and brightening up the school.