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Easy End-of-the-Year Activities

by Andrew Roush
end of year

It may be hard to believe, but the end of another school year is approaching. There’s no doubt it’s been a difficult year, with changes in when, where, and how we teach. None of that changes the fact that ending the school year on a positive note is important. In this post, we’ve collected activities for both in-person and remote learning that can help you close out the year with a smile.

Wrapping Up at a Distance

Some educators will be ending the year, saying goodbye to students, and sending them into the summer and the next school year at a distance. This is definitely challenging, but over the course of the COVID-19 lockdowns, teachers and organizations have developed tips to help you send your students off while teaching remotely. 

Consider fun ways to reflect and relax at the end of this semester. Check out these ideas from Waterford.org that include playlists, small gifts, time capsules, discussions, and other ways to bond after a long, likely distanced, semester. 

Check out these end-of-the-year ABC Countdown Activities in Google Slides. Not only are they fun and integrate technology, but they are also cute! (Don’t forget to go to File — Make a Copy — Entire Presentation to add a copy of this great set to your Google Drive.)

Explore ideas using Flipgrid, digital scrapbooks, and even “digital spirit days” from Teach Between the Lines.

Ashley Marquez of Teach Create Motivate shares seven ideas for digital activities, including digital “memory books,” selfie photos with notes, and more to help you create some year-end fun and bonding with your students.

Take a minute to take a virtual field trip where students guess the locations using high-quality videos. You can select the country where the field trip will take place, as well as the difficulty level. The site also has a multi-player mode which means everyone in the class can play at the same time. How good are their deduction skills?

Lisa Highfill has curated a variety of end-of-the-year activities into this Wakelet. There are resources available here for every grade level.

Giving students a sense of accomplishment at the end of the year is important. Common Sense has vetted and collected ways to do this, even at a distance. Check out their ideas for using Google, polling tools, and a number of other useful online resources.

Emma Pass shares several ideas to release some tension and have fun at the end of the year, including virtual field trips. If you’re a fan of virtual fields trips, don’t forget to check out our ideas for engaging digital trips at the links below.

In-Person Sendoffs

Of course, not everyone will be saying their goodbyes online. Some students and educators will have the opportunity to end the school year on campus. Naturally, there are many fun activities you can do in your classroom.

Writing is a great tool for reflection, and the end of a school year is an ideal time to reflect on goals, changes, and ideas for how students can embrace the summer and the year ahead. Try out some activities from Just Add Students, which includes scavenger hunts, outdoor activities, and of course, thoughtful writing activities.

With time short, and plenty of things left to do to end the year, keeping things easy is likely a priority for you. Teaching Made Practical has seven low-prep activities to help you bring some fun into the last weeks of school, targeting at students in upper elementary grades.

How will you send off your students this year? Share your ideas and activities in the comments!

Photo by Tara Winstead from Pexels

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