Jaffrey Grade School Winter Carnival

The week before February vacation brought the much-anticipated annual Winter Carnival to Jaffrey Grade School students. The carnival has been hosted at the Monadnock Bible Conference for as long as anyone can remember. Senior JGS staff members remembered the carnival’s run as far back as the late 1990’s. While this long-standing tradition has evolved over the years students and staff agree that sledding and tubing are the favored activities.

Balmy temperatures nixed tubing for the carnival but the sledding hill was open and in high demand. First grader Adria, interviewed on the sledding hill stated, “I am having fun today.”  Principal, Susan Shaw-Sarles described her favorite part of the day as sledding. Tuesday, principal Sarles debuted her sledding safety skills with a roll following a bailout. By Thursday she was fully recovered and ready for more sledding with the students.  


Winter Carnival features other crowd pleasers such as the game room, snow sculptures, swimming (for 5th grade students) and the game of gaga. Mr. Harris described gaga, “It is like dodgeball, if you get hit below the knees you are out.” The game is bordered by a one foot boundary wall shaped like a octagon.The game is played until only one player is left. “Our kids first learned about gaga from the Bible Conference.” Students were so enthralled with the game that they raised funds for the construction of an outdoor gaga court at JGS. 

Gaga photo taken by JGS student Taylor Shea.

Gaga photo taken by JGS student Taylor Shea.

Fifth grade JGS students experience the seniority privilege of swimming in the Bible Conference pool. Lower grade students discussed “wishing they were older” so that they could swim in the pool.

Photo courtesy of Susan Shaw-Sarles.

Photo courtesy of Susan Shaw-Sarles.

Snow activities were a collaborative and creative process. First grader Ella stated, “My favorite activity is building a snowman. We put a little ball on a big ball and we decorated it. Everything started to fall off but we did not quit.” First grader Trent ventured away from the traditional snowman and created a snow llama.

JGS Winter Carnival has become a loved tradition that is sure to continue. Winter carnival is made possible with the generosity of the Monadnock Bible Conference and the dedication of JGS’s student council. Student council organizes the activities, whhile advisors for student council, Elliot Pelletier and Nancy Springfield, assist with scheduling and coordinating the event.

Nancy Springfield’s 4th grade class. Photo courtesy of Nancy Springfield.

Nancy Springfield’s 4th grade class. Photo courtesy of Nancy Springfield.