Let’s face it – the end of the year is here!  If you are like me, there are so many things to think about before we rush out of here:  what was accomplished, what still needs to get done, what you wish you did.

What was ACCOMPLISHED

As far as accomplishments, there are plenty for all of us.  Simply teaching the curriculum is an accomplishment, but if you can think of a few special moments, all the better.  I’m thinking of that really great lesson you tried on the spur of the moment that ended up awesome.  Or how about the time you made a student feel really proud of the work they did?  Then there was the time you stood back for a moment and watched your students work, I mean REALLY work because they were invested in their learning.

For me, one of my accomplishments came when I ran with a lesson that my students really took to in math.  It was creating models of double digit multiplication equations.  We spent a lot of time on this (a few days, actually) creating various models in groups, pairs and individually.  The students took to it, showed precision in their work and grasped the concept.  Taking that TIME was well worth it and I felt like the students really got something out of it.

What still needs to GET DONE

Our state testing may be over, but there are still things that need to be taught: science and social studies units, musical performances, literacy work, end of the year assessments.  Yes, we are far from over!  I wrote out all the things I still need to do with my students and it was a bit daunting, but doable.

What you wish you DID

This is the category on which I wish to focus.  Every year, I get to this point and kick myself for not doing something.  It may be something I did with a past class of students, that never got off right with this one or it may be something that just kept getting pushed off for “more important things.”  These last few weeks can pose a promise of some time (if even just SOME time) to go ahead and do what you wish you could.  My prime example: student blogging.  For a myriad of reasons (you  may call them excuses), I never quite got things going with this, even though my intention was to begin in September.  Well, better late than never, and gosh darn it, I started my kids up this week!  (More on that in later posts.)

For you it might be something similar: a project or skill you wanted to introduce to you class.  You may have wanted to try that cool activity idea you learned about in the workshop from the fall.  Maybe you wanted to try out an arts integration lesson.  You may use this time to try something a little outlandish or out of your comfort zone.

Here are some other ideas of what you could do in these last weeks of school:

  • Do a full out art project where students HAVE to be creative with only a few simple directions from you.
  • Listen to music with your students.
  • Have a Studio Day.
  • Take your students outside to read.
  • Do some movement with your class.
  • Play instruments with your students.
  • Try a new piece of technology in your classroom.

Over the next few weeks, we will be writing and posting ideas and stories about things you can try out with your students or do to help your students gear up for the summer as they end this year.   Get ready!  The finish line is in sight!

~EMP

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