It’s that time of year when everyone is focused on the last day of school. The countdown has begun and administrators, teachers, and students alike are calculating the days, hours, and minutes until that final bell rings.
While math may suddenly be the preferred subject, the end of the year provides a great opportunity to create a theme-based writing assignment—one that helps students reflect on the year and each other, and gives them happy memories to cherish throughout the summer.
- 1 marker or pen per student
- 1 sheet of paper per student
- Optional: crayons or colored pencils
- Optional: roll of tape
- Before class, place one marker or pen and one sheet of paper on each student’s desk.
- When the students sit down, have them write their name at the top of each side of paper. Optional: Have them spend a few minutes creating a “logo” of their name using crayons or colored pencils. Tell them to think of it as their personal letterhead and not to make it too big so there’s still plenty of room to write on the paper.
- Share some of your favorite moments as their teacher. Discuss how you felt on the first day of school, note how those feelings have changed over the course of the year, and reminisce about the things you enjoyed most. Ask your students to look around the room and think of what they like about each other.
- Instruct students to pick up their marker/pen and walk around to each desk, stopping to write one nice memory about the person whose name is at the top of the piece of paper. Optional: Tape each student’s letterhead to their back and have everyone write their compliment “behind” the person it’s about.
- When everyone is done and returns to their desks, go around the room and have each student read one of the compliments they received or share one of the compliments they gave. Optional: Collect each student’s letterhead to review, collate into a book, and give everyone a copy on the last day of school.
This positive twist on peer feedback is one educator’s can participate in, too! Add your favorite memory to each student’s letterhead or adapt this activity for your next teacher’s meeting.
What fun, end-of-year activities do you conduct in your classroom? Share in the comments below!