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Monday, June 3, 2013

End of Year Madness - Tips to getting it done!

I can’t BELIEVE it’s already the end of the school year!  It seems to go by SO fast! To make things run a little easier, I always try to get as much of the dreaded “have to’s” out of the way!  You know...  ALL that assessment stuff, permanent records, writing samples, grading... anything I know that I’m going to have to disclose to parents or my principal.  I begin this at least 4 weeks before the last day of school – let’s face it, it’s too stressful to try and get it all done in a short amount of time... i.e. last minute!  We’ve all done that before... Eeeek!!!!!

Once you feel that you’ve got a “good grip” on the essentials then you can do some fun things with your kids the last week or so!  I spend probably about a week and a half making little “treasures” for my students and parents.  Here are some ideas you might want to try:

1.      Student Self Portrait (Beginning and End of Year)

2.      What I will Miss about Kindergarten/First Grade story

3.     Alphabet Book (kept throughout the year)

4.     Class DVD

5.     Memory Bag-Book (sample drawings, writing, stories that were made throughout the year)

6.     Handprints

7.     Class T-shirts

8.      The Important Thing to Remember Book (we make this for the upcoming class... I read it to my new students on the first day of school!)

In the past, my school has always had a pretty significant production for the last week of school.  There is always a Kindergarten graduation ceremony, 5th Grade Luncheon-Walk-Balloon Release-Ceremony, and Classroom Awards.  Whew!  Tell me about it... it’s almost on the verge of being insane!!!  But, basically the kids and parents come to my classroom after the “bigger ceremony” is finished in the gym.  When they arrive, I have a gift sitting at each child’s seat... along with report cards, Class DVD, keepsakes, etc.  I also take a few moments to recognize EACH student in my class.  I give each student a silly certificate to recognize their accomplishments and their little personalities!  They love this!! (I have made these printable certificates available on TPT -Teachers Pay Teachers and I hope you’ll check them out! 
Click Here to purchase Certificates on Teachers Pay Teachers
After I give out certificates, we enjoy a cookie cake and juice boxes while playing a portion of our class DVD on the active board.  The parents LOVE this part!!!!  Finally, the kids are free to be checked-out by their parents and leave to start those GREAT vacations!  If students do not get checked out, we spend the rest of the day watching movies, playing, and cleaning!


I hope you all have a GREAT End of the Year!