Home End of Year End-of-Year Ideas and Summer Reading with Book Creator

End-of-Year Ideas and Summer Reading with Book Creator

by Stevie Frank
Book Creator cover for a K-12 Summer Reading Journal template

Summer is knocking on our doors! The weather is getting warmer, days are getting longer, and the promise of sleeping in is just within our reach. But, we’re not quite done with the school year! How can we keep the momentum until the end? As a former classroom teacher, I had canned assessments in the form of essays, worksheets, or quizzes that could quickly be graded and inserted into the gradebook. But, I learned that students didn’t find those types of assignments motivating to complete, especially with the promise of summer break creeping in. I quickly realized I needed exciting end-of-year projects and activities to engage all my learners and get us to the finish line. And then, there’s the “summer slide.” What can we do to prevent it? Let’s explore some of my favorite end-of-year and summer resources by Book Creator!

1. End-of-Year Ideas with Book Creator

I always enjoyed having my students reflect on their favorite parts of the year on a paper copy “year-in-review” packet. However, I found these packets were becoming out-of-date and expensive to purchase online. So, why not integrate some technology? It’s true that finding the right tool to connect state standards with meaningful assessment is difficult at best, especially when it comes to end-of-year projects.

There are so many shiny objects out there, but some stand out to me. One tool I kept asking for when I was in the classroom was Book Creator! Book Creator is an online platform for students to create their own books, presentations, or portfolios. Teachers can also create their own templates and have students work in these more guided experiences. Students can add text, customize colors and organization, add maps, and so much more. 

New templates to introduce your students to Book Creator
Screenshot by Emily Horn | New Templates to Introduce Your Students to Book Creator

The first time I laid eyes on a 2nd grade student recording themselves reading their very own self-created book, I was in awe. This student was diving into the DOK level 3, explaining their writing process! This was a tool worth learning more about. What I appreciate about Book Creator is their extensive vetted list of resources available to teachers. You don’t have to start from a blank book, you can check out their resources under “Discover” or use one of their templates. There’s even a list of ideas, complete with templates, that you can use with students for end-of-year projects, activities, and reflection. 

2. Book Creator Summer Reading

Ending the school year on a high was important for me as a classroom teacher. But I found myself spending loads of time searching for summer activities for my students, not to mention spending lots of personal money. I wanted to prevent that “summer slide.” Parents would start emailing me to ask what they could do over the summer, and my answer was always: READ! Building background knowledge on an array of topics is one of the strongest ways to help with reading comprehension.

I’d make copies of packets of graphic organizers we worked on throughout the school year and send them home with students. Did these copies ever actually make it home? That’s debatable. So, when Book Creator and I started to share ideas about how to help prevent the “summer slide”, I knew just what to do! 

Listen to My Ed Tech Life’s Podcast “Book Creator: Igniting Summer Reading with Stevie Frank

I helped create summer template books for Book Creator that are housed in the Discover tab of resources. I included all my favorite, engaging graphic organizers and equitable resources for students to find books online over the summer. I put the bones together and, of course, the Book Creator team came in and made it beautiful! Check it out!

I took out all the hard work in creating a parent letter home, created a video for students on how to work through the book, and even made some videos to help support you in getting it out to students and their families! It was a labor of love, one that I wish I’d been able to create for my own students.

I hope you enjoy using Book Creator for end-of-year projects and activities and to prevent the summer slide! Leave us a comment to tell us how you’ll use Book Creator with students. Have a favorite template or activity book? Share that with us, too!

Read about Book Creator’s Summer Reading Journals:Jump, slide & dive into an adventure this summer with Book Creator!

Featured Image: Provided by the author; created by Book Creator

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