10 End of School Year Activities for the Exhausted Teacher
Updated: Dec 7, 2022
With the end of the school year fast approaching, it's a good excuse to break away from the usual routine and to shake things up a bit. It's a time for reflection but also for looking ahead...thinking about what has been achieved and what the future holds! No doubt your teacher brain is completely frazzled though after the past year but don't worry, here's a list of fun activity ideas for you to choose from...
1. End of Year Countdown
Blow up balloons and write a number 0-5/10 on each one. Hang the balloons from the board or on a piece of string in your classroom. At the end of each day, choose someone who has behaved amazingly well to pop a balloon! You could even add a slip of paper detailing a surprise for the following day inside each balloon - just roll the paper up and slide it into the balloon before blowing it up.
2. Classroom Camp Out
First of all you need to set up your camp by making tents with the tables, blankets and sheets. If you have any of the small kids pop up tents, they'll be perfect too! You might want to display a campsite scene on your whiteboard. Dim the lights and read books by torchlight. The children could play games or work in their tents. Perhaps you'd like to create a class campfire using sticks and orange/yellow tissue paper, ask everyone to sit around it and then sing songs or learn poems. At the end of the day, the children can pretend to roast marshmallows and drink hot chocolate as a delicious treat!
3. Forest Schools Day
Keep your class busy and tire them out with a day in the great outdoors! They could identify wildlife and flowers in the school grounds, do den building, play cooperative games, paint outdoors, build a bug hotel, make flower crowns and much much more. Go to the Wildlife Trust for additional amazing wild activities!
4. Film Day
Ahh, an old favourite! This one gives you the chance to tackle that store cupboard, label some drawers and back those display boards ready for next year! First of all, ask the children to create a ticket for their trip to the movies. They'll also need to design and make a paper popcorn cone for that all important snack! Next, arrange the chairs in front of your whiteboard and let the film commence! Follow up activities could include creating a poster, doing a character description, writing a new ending or drawing a comic strip of the plot.
5. Book Party
Gather together books from different genres and lay them out on the tables at the beginning of the day. Alternatively, ask each child to bring their favourite book to school. Throughout the day, encourage your class to read the books - they might want to use finger torches, read to a teddy or sit under a tree outside to make this extra exciting! The children can also complete various activities to keep them on task. These might include a book review, using a magnifying glass to search through the books for high frequency words, painting a favourite setting, using a dictionary to find the meaning of unknown words, making masks or puppets or designing a book mark. Here are some great ways to encourage reluctant readers.
6. Memory Books
A memory book is a lovely way to look back at the past year, plus it makes a great keepsake. Children fill in details about their favourite lessons, school trips, plans for the summer and more. You could create your own or grab a ready to go memory book by clicking on the image below!
7. Talent Show
Hold a class talent show! Ask each child to prepare by practicing their talent at home (sending a quick note home would be useful here) - ideas include singing, dancing, telling jokes, sharing art work, showing some karate moves or creating a gymnastics routine. Some children may prefer to work with a partner rather than on their own. Before the show, you could do some opinion writing. Children should describe their special talent and explain why they think that they are good at it. If you are inviting guests, ask the class to make invites, a program and posters ready for the big day. Finally, on the day of the talent show, create a stage area, put out seating for the audience, have microphones at the ready and provide some refreshments!
8. Mini Topic Day
Set aside a day where children can research and share information about their hobby or interest. You may need access to the library and learning pads/laptops so that they can do some additional research. Your class could choose how they share the information - they may want to create a leaflet, a book, a presentation or a short film about their hobby. Allow time at the end of the day for children to move around the classroom and look at each other's work.
9. Thank You Notes
A nice calming activity next for when the end of school excitement is reaching fever pitch! Think about all of the people that have helped during the school year: crossing lady/man, kitchen staff, teaching assistants, parent helpers, site supervisor, head teacher and many more. Ask each child to choose somebody to write a thank you note or card to. They could draw a picture or make a craft to give them too.
10. Award Ceremony
Host an awards ceremony for your class! Ask them to come to school in their party clothes, lay out some red fabric for your red carpet and give out certificates (and trophies) to each child. This is a lovely way to make your pupils feel special and valued. Awards could focus on character traits such as ambition, kindness, courage, creativity, patience, enthusiasm, imagination and perseverance. You could also hand out academic awards such as super speller, marvellous musician, good reader, super scientist, etc.
If you are in need of more inspiration, click now for some quick and free activities that don't require much preparation!
Don't forget to add your own ideas in the comments section below!
Images from Pixabay