At the end of a term, students and teachers can breathe a sigh of relief safe in the knowledge that the bulk of the work is done and we can all look forward to a relaxing and fun last day of school before a well-deserved break.
Some teachers like to bring in games or watch movies with their class on the last day of school, but why not try one of the following fun and creative projects, instead? These projects are designed to get your class reminiscing about their highlights of this term and reflecting on how much they have achieved in that time.
1) Personal Yearbook
Get you class to make and decorate their own A5 booklet that will act as a journal of their experiences in your class. You can make it around five pages long and include a page listing each pupil’s achievements, a page for future goals, a message page that allows the pupils to write in each other’s yearbooks, some pictures and maybe a page where the pupil talks about their favourite subject. Alternatively, you may want to make a whole class yearbook, where each pupil gets a page dedicated to them, their achievements and their interests.
2) Art Exhibit
Turn your classroom into a mini art gallery and display your pupils’ best artwork on the wall in chronological order, from the first week right through to the last week of school. Short stories, sculptures and science projects can also be included because you want to show the best from everyone in your class. Get the children, one by one, to stand up in front of the class and conduct a short, show-and-tell style talk on their pieces explaining what they enjoyed about making it etc… You may even want to open the class exhibit to parents at the end of the school day, so they can revel in their child’s achievements too.
3) Time Capsule
Create a class time capsule filled with mementos from this year which will then be opened when the students graduate from school. A suitable container might be something like a shoe box, because the idea is only to hide the time capsule rather than bury it. This way it will be a lot easier to find at a later date and you don’t have to worry about laminating everything inside, because there won’t be any need for it to be waterproof.
Include personal letters from every pupil to their future self. These might say things like which subjects they enjoy the most, what interests they have, their friends in school and maybe even what their ambitions are for when they’re an adult. You can also include a photo of every pupil with their letter and pictures taken over the year of class projects and trips etc. Including a newspaper which reminds you of the date you made the time capsule is useful and may be even the latest toy or craze that everyone in your class is currently obsessed with. Those kinds of objects are always fun to look at in few years’ time, so have fun filling your memory box with your class.
4) Parent Gift Bag
Students want to enjoy the Christmas holiday and not think about school at all, but parents I’m sure would appreciate a helping hand to keep their child out of the ‘winter holiday brain drain’.
To counteract this, and hopefully encourage some extracurricular learning over the Christmas break, get your pupils to make a gift bag to take home to their parents, filled with things to encourage learning at home. You may want to include things like a recommended reading list, some word puzzles and printable worksheets, educational toys and maybe even a blank notebook to encourage a bit of journal writing. The pupils can also contribute to the gift bag by writing up some goals or lists of interests they want to pursue over the holidays.
5) Award Ceremony
Create your own Oscar-style awards ceremony in your classroom and hand out reward certificates or rosettes to everyone in your class. The awards can either be serious or silly, just make sure you play to each individual’s strengths. For example, you might have an Einstein Award for achievements in science, the Nobel Peace Prize for peace-making pupils, Class Clown awards, Shakespeare awards for amateur dramatics, and so on. You may even want to invite the parents to witness the prize-giving ceremony too.
So there you have five fun ways to reflect on the end of the school term in your classroom. If you are a teacher and have tried any of the above or have your own end-of-year celebrations, tell us about them in the comments below.
Photo by Carol Munro
Bio: Louise Blake is a mummy blogger with a passion for learning and education. She recommends School Stickers if you’re looking for a way to reward your class at the end of term. She’s looking forward to spending this Christmas baking and watching The Snowman with her young son.