• Ralph M. Captain Parent-Teacher Organization

    An Overview of PTO Events


    PTO Meetings

    PTO meetings are generally held the second Thursday of every month (August-June) in the Captain Library (unless otherwise specified). All members of the Captain community are members of the PTO and are encouraged to attend the meetings to learn about the events at the school and offer input regarding budget and priorities.


    The day before classes, all students will have the opportunity to come visit the school, meet their classroom teacher, and drop off school supplies. New families joining the Captain community will have an orientation from 8:15-9 am in the school cafeteria where they can meet the principal and other families, get an overview of Captain school, and ask questions.

    From 9-10 am, all students and families are invited to meet their teachers in their classrooms. This is a great time to drop off your child's school supplies. In addition, families will have a one-stop shopping opportunity to take care of the year's main PTO business. At the kick-off, you can pre-order your child's community team t-shirt (see below for more information), order the yearbook, and learn about and sign up for volunteer opportunities.

    Volunteer Opportunity: Volunteers are needed to staff informational tables to advertise events, solicit volunteers for PTO events, and give general information to new and returning families. If you are interested in volunteering for this event, contact the PTO presidents at [email protected].


    Community Team T-Shirts

     Upon entering RM Captain school, each child is placed on a mixed-grade community team that they will remain with throughout their time at Captain. Each of the 12 teams has a different team number and unique t-shirt color. Parents will have the opportunity to order the team t-shirts through the PTO at the beginning of the school year. The community teams will be assembled a few times each year for team building activities and the culminating event each year is the all-school Field Day. Teams assignments are made by the P.E. teachers.


    New Parent Cocktail Party
    At the beginning of the year, the PTO hosts a cocktail party to get to know our newest community members. Light appetizers and drinks are provided. Key members of the PTO will be on hand to help answer any questions about the PTO or Captain school.  We look forward to getting to welcome new families into our community!
    Volunteer Opportunity: Volunteers are needed to help set up and clean up at the event site. Please contact the PTO presidents or one of the New Family Welcome committee to volunteer. 

    Popsicles on the Playground

    In the Fall, the PTO offers a chance for

    students to come to the school playground, enjoy popsicles and meet new friends in the Captain Community. The parents generally congregate on the blacktop and talk while the kids run and play with their friends. 

    Staff Appreciation Breakfast/Dinner 
    Shortly after school begins, the teachers host a curriculum night in which families are invited in to learn specifics about each grade's curriculum and ask questions of the teachers. Because the teachers spend so much time preparing for this night, the PTO holds a Teacher Appreciation Dinner so that the teachers can quickly and conveniently grab dinner before they host the evening.

    Volunteer Opportunity: For the Teacher Appreciation Dinner, volunteers are needed to bring food, drinks, as well as plates, utensils and napkins. Volunteers are also needed to help set up and clean up for these events. There may be other volunteer opportunities throughout the year in association with Teacher Appreciation. 


    Staff Appreciation Dessert Raffle

    Each teacher or staff member will be entered into a monthly Dessert Raffle. Multiple winners each month will get tasty homemade desserts that show we care! (Each staff member will win once, but shh! Don't tell them that!)

    Volunteer Opportunity: We need several volunteers to make yummy desserts each month! Contact our Teacher Appreciation chairs to volunteer!


    Teacher Appreciation Breakfasts

    Starting around October, each grade level (K-5) hosts a Teacher Appreciation Breakfast – one each month. The breakfasts are set up before school in the kindergarten suite and must be cleaned up before school before the kindergarteners arrive in class.

    Volunteer Opportunity: PTO grade level representatives will be asking for volunteers to help provide and set up the breakfasts, so watch out for this wonderful and easy volunteer opportunity!


    Adopt-a-Family and Community Outreach

     Each year, the Captain Community takes part in the end-of-year adopt-a-family program and other occasional community outreach programs.

    Volunteer Opportunity: Toward the end of the year, a call will go out for a detailed list of donations of gift-wrapped items for our adopted family. Other community outreach opportunities may arise throughout the year, so watch your child's backpack for notices! Questions can be directed to our Community Outreach PTO chair.


    Garden Days

    All hands on deck! The PTO holds two garden days each year, one in the Fall and one in the Spring. These are generally held on a Friday after school and children and families alike are asked to help tend our garden. It is a fun and lively event where you may find yourself weeding, tilling, planting, or moving rocks, and teaching the children all the while about gardening and the natural world.

     Volunteer Opportunity: MANY! The entire community is invited to come out and join the fun! Contact our PTO Garden Committee for questions or to sign up!


    International Night

    The Captain International Night is one of the the PTO's most popular events. Volunteers representing many different countries set up tables with information about the country they represent, cultural artifacts, and most popularly, food! Participants are often given the opportunity to see dances, play games, and even dress in the traditional attire of other countries. International Night is held in the Captain cafeteria and is often accompanied by performances either on the stage or in the gym.


    Volunteer Opportunity: Families are needed to host tables of international countries. Generally, each table will showcase items that represent the culture of the country and a food or drink of the country is usually featured. If you or someone you know is interested in hosting a table representing a country, please let the PTO know! You may contact either the PTO presidents or the chair(s) of the International Night Event.


    Each grade level takes part in three all-school celebrations each year. The parties are Halloween, a Winter Party held right before Winter Break, and Valentines Day.

    The Halloween Party is notable in that there is a traditional Halloween parade of costumes. Parents may be asked to volunteer to come before the parade, generally held at 2 pm, to help dress the children in their costumes. Weather permitting, the parade is preceded by a traditional dance of the 5th grade on the blacktop and then all the children parade about a block down DeMun and back into the school. The Clayton Police block off a small portion of DeMun and Northwood for our parade – it is quite something! In case of bad weather, the parade may be held inside in the cafeteria.


     Volunteer Opportunity: There are ample opportunities to help out at class parties or you can come enjoy the parties with your child! Volunteers may be asked to bring in food or drink for the children, help run games or crafts, or set up and serve food during the parties. Parties are generally coordinated by either the Grade level Rep or the Room Parents for each classroom.


    Adventure Racing

     This active and educational event is held after school in the Fall (not every year) and has the children (and parents!) reading a map of the school grounds and navigating from point-to-point collecting a series of “stamps” all while attempting to be the fastest in their group! Courses are set up for various age and abilities.

    Volunteer Opportunity: A few volunteers are needed to check in participants, record times of departure and return, and possibly help set up the courses. To volunteer, contact the PTO presidents or the Adventure Racing chair.



    The Auction/Party is the single largest fundraising event of the year.   Whether it is a big bash at the Boo Cat Club featuring the masterful tunes of Captain's own DJ Crucial, or a chic affair at the St. Louis Artists' Guild featuring the unique masterworks of the talented K-5 students, it is always a fun time!   Whether you plan to bid on big ticket items, sign-up for parties hosted by Captain parents and teachers, or just dance and mingle with the Captain community, we encourage you to buy a ticket and support our school!

    Volunteer Opportunity: MANY! Volunteers are needed at many stages of the auction. The auction is dependent on donations from the community so volunteers are needed to donate items or services for auction or solicit donations from area businesses. Watch for donation forms to come your way!


    Movie Night

     A community building event for all Captain families. Bring a sleeping bag or blanket and we'll provide a nut-free snack and a family-friendly movie.

    Pancake Breakfast

    Join us for this fun community event! A terrific team of dads cook up a delicious pancake breakfast in the Captain cafeteria and families enjoy each others' company on a cold Saturday morning. 
    Volunteer Opportunity: Dads are needed to help cook up pancakes and sausages, etc. in the kitchen. We can also use help with set-up and clean-up! Contact the Pancake Breakfast chair for more information on volunteering! 

    Trivia Night

     Our annual Trivia Night is offered in conjunction with the other Clayton Elementary schools (Glenridge and Meramec) and is always a popular event! Participants can join with their friends and neighbors to buy a table of 8 seats. Tables compete with each other to answer the most questions correctly on a whole host of topics. There are also individual opportunities to win prizes all while benefiting the schools! Tickets are limited and this event always sells out, so make sure to order your tickets as soon as the flyer comes out!

    Volunteer Opportunity: A few volunteers are needed to help serve drinks, sell tickets, run answers, etc. Contact the Trivia Night chair(s) for information.


    Black History Night

    Black History Night is one of the highlights of the year at Captain Elementary. Students in 1st - 5th grade take the stage to celebrate the culmination of Black History Month. The performance takes place at Clayton High School and is extremely popular, so don't be late or seats may be hard to come by!

    The Captain PTO helps fund Black History Night, but no volunteers are needed.


    Barnes and Noble Book Fair

     Each year, the Captain PTO holds a book fair at Barnes and Noble in Ladue Crossing. This is a purchased-based fundraiser for PTO and a chance for families to buy books for classroom use which have been selected by teachers and staff. On the Saturday when the store-based book fair begins, families can take part in fun activities throughout the day and get recommendations for books for everyone in the family. Barnes and Noble donates a portion of all purchases identified as part of our book fair back to the PTO to support the school and various programs.

    Volunteer Opportunity: Volunteers are needed to staff book request tables, or a welcome table where they greet and help check in Captain families and volunteers, etc. Contact PTO presidents or Book Fair chairs for more information.


    Scholastic Book Fair

     Not to be confused with the Barnes and Noble book fair put on by the PTO, the school librarians host a Scholastic Book Fair in the school library. Scholastic donates a portion of the purchases to the school library. Watch for information coming home about this event. Note that the PTO is not directly involved in this particular event, so any questions can be sent to Mr. Bober at [email protected].


    Science Fair

     In the Spring, many students take part in the Clayton Science Fair. Participants prepare science fair projects to be presented on a conventional science fair poster board or in electronic form using Powerpoint. Projects are displayed at Captain, where they are shared with classmates then taken at the end of the week to the high school where they will take part in the Clayton Science Fair along with those of students from the other Clayton schools. At the Science Fair, participants will be able to take part in many science demonstrations offered by high school students. This is a fun and educational event not to be missed! You need not have completed a project to enjoy the fun!

    The PTO supports the Science Fair financially but does not run the event, so no volunteers are needed.

    Captain Family Dance
    Expect music and snacks and a great time celebrating the friendships our kids have made throughout the year. We'll have a DJ and hope for the entire family to get onto the dance floor together and with their friends.
    Each year, we ask the Captain community to join us in a brainstorming and feedback session to help us gear up for the coming year. A light lunch will be served. 
    No volunteers are needed but we do appreciate your time and input!  

    Field Day (Unscheduled for 2018)

    A fun-filled day of activities held at the end of the school year!

    The children are placed in mixed-grade community teams that they will stay on throughout their time at Captain. Each of the 12 teams has a different number and team t-shirt color. Each team will rotate throughout the day to 12-13 events set up by the PE teachers. Weather permitting, field day is held at Concordia. In the event of bad weather, the events take place inside and the teams rotate throughout the school building to various stations.

    Volunteer Opportunity: MANY!!! We need many, many parents to help run the events. Morning and afternoon shifts are available. Ideally, we will have 2 parents for each of the stations. Contact the PTO presidents, the chair(s) of the Field Day event, or PE teachers for information on volunteering.

Last Modified on March 7, 2018