Phew! The wildest school year is coming to a close. As we wind down it’s time to get some fun last week of school activities planned to celebrate making it through the chaos. Here’s a quick reference list to get the idea juices flowing. When possible there are in-person and virtual options for whatever your learning environment looks like.
End of the Year Memory Book
The End of the Year Memory Book makes an excellent keepsake for adults and students. The best parts? They’re no-prep, the printable version requires minimal supplies, and are very easy to use both in-person and digitally.
End of the Year Awards
Depending on your school, these may be a requirement. Even if they’re not, kids love getting awards and the Lucky Little Learners End of the Year Awards focus on all the best parts of your students. Their kindness, their humor, and their hard work are highlighted. Have your own ideas for awards? Awesome! They’re also editable. End of the Year Awards are printable for in-person award ceremonies and digital for distance learning.
End of the Year Countdown
There are a ton of great ideas out there on doing an end-of-the-year countdown. A no-prep method is using the End of the Year Countdown water balloon popping slideshow. These slides can be projected onto a screen for in-person learners and shared with distance students. If you’re in person and looking for something a bit more interactive try using real balloons and creating an end-of-the-year countdown bulletin board. Fill up balloons to match how many days of school you have left. Inside of each balloon, slip a piece of paper with a fun activity (tell a joke, a few minutes of extra recess, bring a stuffed animal the next day, a special treat, a fun art project, etc.) then pop them one day at a time to reveal a surprise for each day.
If you are teaching in person, classroom transformations are so fun! Kids absolutely love them. However, they can be a bit intimidating because teachers assume they are time or money-intensive. They definitely can be but they don’t have to be. If you are a part of our Facebook group, you will hear a lot about Camp Read-a-Lot or its close cousin Camp Read-a-Lot: Social Distancing Style. You could also try a Beach Day transformation. Classroom transformations are excellent end-of-the-year activities because they are a fun way to review what students have learned in a highly engaging way. As the teacher, you get to decide how much time and money go into them but no matter what you decide- your students will love it!
If you have distance learners, you don’t have to be left out of the classroom transformation fun. You can decorate your online classroom and ask students to decorate their own learning spaces. If you’d like to try Camp Read-a-Lot, ask students to build their own forts at home (with parent permission, of course). If you’re able to send things to your students, you can also send them a build-your-own-s’more kit to get them in the camping mood. Beach Day can be done by asking students to color tropical scenes or birds and taping them up around their learning space.
Last Week of School Activities: Memory Show and Tell
Students have been through a lot this school year. A good way to get them focused on the positive and incorporate some writing is by having Memory Show and Tell. For in-person students, simply ask them to draw a picture of their favorite memory from this school year and write a detailed paragraph about it. Students will take turns presenting their memory to the class. For those students who can’t present their own work, you or a friend can read their memory out loud to everyone.
For distance learning students, this activity is similar. Ask them to draw their favorite memory and write about it. However, depending on the needs of your online classroom, you can have students present live to their peers or prerecord their memories. These recordings can be sent directly to you to share with their classmates or posted to ClassDojo, SeeSaw, FlipGrid, etc. depending on the online platforms you prefer.
Last Week of School Activities: Virtual Field Trip
If your students are like mine, they’re a little disappointed that they didn’t get to go on the fun traditional field trips that they’ve seen previous students attend. If you haven’t already tried out a virtual field trip with your class, now is the time. These can be projected for the whole class or students can explore them on one-to-one devices. Distance learners can easily access virtual field trips on their personal devices. We Are Teachers has a great write-up of 25 virtual field trips that your kids are sure to enjoy.
Last Week of School Activities: Talent Show
The end of the year talent show is a tradition for many students. The last week of school is a great time for this! It’s an exciting opportunity for students to show off something they’re proud of. The best part of a talent show? It can be anything you want it to be. Singing and dancing? Sure, but encourage your students to showcase anything they’re proud of. Talent shows can include showcasing art, a presentation of the top 10 coolest shark facts, a magic trick, taekwondo routines, playing instruments, drawn designs for a new invention, anything! Encourage your students to show off something that they’re proud of.
If you’re in-person, this can be a school-wide activity or just in your classroom. If you’re distance teaching, try having students present their talent live during a class meeting or prerecord it for presentation. Recording it on their own can help many students feel more comfortable sharing their talents with their classmates.
Last Week of School Activities: Class Party
A classic for a reason. The end of the year class party is something many students look forward to. It’s a fun celebration of all they’ve accomplished during the school year. If you’re in-person, making small adjustments can make the party more social distance friendly. Prepare individual snack bags for students so they’re not touching everything. If weather and space allow, try having your party outside.
Virtual learning can be a bit more challenging but there are workarounds for creating a party when you’re not sharing a learning space with your students. If pick-ups or drops offs are allowed, hand out treats or student gifts so students still have something special for the end of the year. Play games like Simon Says, Kahoot, Zoom In, or Bingo as a class to add some fun to your final lessons.
If watching a movie is a part of your celebrations try hosting a class watch party. You can do this in two different ways. First, you can stream a movie directly from your account to your class via screen sharing on Google Meet or Zoom. Alternatively, you can coordinate with parents to find out what streaming services you may have in common. This works well if you are teaching with only a few distance students. Ask their adults what services they have access to and choose a movie from a service like Netflix, Hulu, or Disney+ that everyone has in common. These three providers have watch party features so up to 50 people can watch content together.
Last Week of School Activities: Virtual Year Book
Use this distance learning activity in tandem with the End of the Year Memory Book. Students can submit photos or videos of their home learning spaces or their experiences with distance learning. Compile these into a slideshow and present it to your class. Try combining this slideshow with the End of the Year Awards to showcase each student.
As we wrap up this crazy year, let’s make sure we celebrate all the positive moments and success of our students. We’ve earned it and they have definitely earned it. Let’s make the last week of school the best it can be!
SHOP THIS POST
Use the image below to save this post to your Pinterest board for future reference.