Secret Santa or Santa Claus?


Varsha Rammohan

A tinsel-and-ornaments-adorned Christmas Tree brings a festive feeling into a classroom. Many students in these few weeks will be participating in Secret Santa gift-giving.

by Varsha Rammohan, Reporter

Bright lights adorn the ceiling in Main, teachers put up trees in their classrooms and students flock to Manzanita for a cup of hot cocoa. Students bring out their fuzzy jackets and boots, Christmas music plays nonstop on every radio station and the weather becomes cooler and cooler. As the excited buzz of the holiday season permeates the campus, the popular gift-giving tradition of Secret Santa is once again an upper school favorite.

“I think Secret Santa is a really fun activity, and I think it really helps you get to know the people you’re playing with better,” said junior Shreya Dasari. “My favorite part would definitely be trying to guess who your Secret Santa is because it’s always so exciting.”

Junior Varsity and Varsity Dance are participating this year, continuing their yearly tradition. Each day is themed, ranging from food and dance to fuzzy, such as fuzzy socks or slippers. The Secret Santas revealed themselves on Friday, culminating with a big gift.

“I really like Secret Santa,” said Jacqueline Au (9), who is in JV dance. “I like that it’s also with Varsity, so it’s a lot of people, so it’s harder to guess who your Santa is.”

Different sports teams also took part in Secret Santa. Girls basketball as well as girls soccer are exchanging gifts during the holiday season. For Junior Varsity basketball, “Secret Sister” is extended throughout the basketball season, with players gifting one another at each game.

Suman Mohanty (9), JV girls basketball captain, talked about her favorite part about Secret Santa.

“Everyone loves receiving gifts, and it feels really good to give something for the holidays,” Suman said. “It’s really fun to give other people presents secretly, and I feel like it’ll bring our team closer.”

Some advisors as well as teachers organized Secret Santa and holiday giving in their individual classes. Freshman advisor Dr. Shaun Jahshan offered her input on the holiday game.

“I think Secret Santa helps the advisees get to know each other better. Their choice of gift is always very revealing, and it’s just a fun way to enjoy time together,” Dr. Jahshan said. “People’s reactions when they open the clue and the gift is also fun to watch.”

In Secret Santa, participants write down a wishlist of what presents that would like. Each person is randomly assigned someone else to whom they must give a series of gifts. However, the gift-giver is supposed to keep his or her identity secret, leaving the gift-receiver to determine who is his or her Secret Santa.

Secret Santa and other gift-giving festivities will be a popular sight on campus for the next couple of weeks.