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End Of The School Year Ideas

It’s the end of the school year, and I can admit that I’m excited about summer, but the thought of saying bye to my students makes me sad.  Each group of kids is something unique and special.  If you think about it, our kids come to us as 5-year-olds who don’t know letters, numbers, or how to write their names.  And they leave us 180 days later as readers and writers.  180 days of growth, bonding, laughter, joy, frustration, and tears.   But nothing is as important as the family we build in our classrooms.   I am always immensely proud of my kids and I know they will do great things!   So, let’s talk about some end of the school year ideas!

Kindergarten Graduation?

Here is my answer to this question: That will be a NO for us.   We do not do kindergarten graduation.  I believe that we graduate twice:  high school and college.  Completing kindergarten is a milestone, yes.  But it is not a graduation-level event.  I believe we should celebrate our year together so we have a small celebration in our classroom.  We invite the families.  We watch a movie of our year together.  Everyone gets a small gift and a personalized award!

End Of The School Year Ideas: A Letter From My Teacher On The Last Day Of School

During the last week or so of school, we read the book A Letter From Your Teacher On The Last Day Of School. We spend time sharing our favorite memories from the year. As we share our memories, we create graphic organizers!

Students then create a scrapbook of our year together!

Here are the topics included in our scrapbook: Our classroom, Our Favorite Activities, Our Favorite Lunch, Our Favorite Recess Activities, Our Favorite Centers, Our favorite Dress up Day, Our Favorite Part Of The Day, Our Favorite Snack, Our Favorite Memory, OUr Favorite Books, Our Favorite Thing We Learned, Our Teacher, Our Favorite Science Experiment.

End Of The School Year Ideas: Gifts

I do not buy my students a gift at the end of the year.  My reasoning is that I give the gifts all year with our theme days, Foodie Fun Fridays, and more!  But I do want my kids to have something to remember our year so they get a personalized gift that costs me $1 each.

These are created for FREE using the website wordart.com/create.  I entered all the kids’ names along with the year, our school name, and kindergarten.   I also include the word Mustaches because I call my kids “my mustaches!”.   You can choose different shapes and change colors to make it unique.  We chose circles.  We printed the word art, cut them out, and glued them onto cardstock.  Those were placed in picture frames from Dollar Tree.

We have also started creating a class picture to give as a reminder of our year together!  The directions can be found at this link:  https://linktr.ee/MrsAdamsKinder

End Of The School Year Ideas: Student Silhouettes

For the last couple of years, we’ve made these student silhouettes and the kids and families love them. They’re such a great keepsake. In fact, I still have mine from kindergarten. Of course, that one required me to sit perfectly still for minutes, and then my teacher had to meticulously hand-cut the silhouette. Thank goodness for technology. This video shows you how you can simply make end-of-the-year gifts with student silhouettes.

End Of The School Year Ideas: Awards

Each child gets a mustache award that is chosen and created just for them.  These personalized awards honor each child’s personality and recognize their unique contribution to our classroom family.  Each award celebrates the child as an individual and not just academic achievement.    In the past, I’ve done “Best Dancer,”  “Best Handwriting,” “The Personal Assistant Award”, etc.

Click the image to get your FREE and EDITABLE mustache awards!

end of the year awards

End Of The Year Video

My students’ final gift is a 20-minute video of our year together. You see, I take about 5,000 pictures each school year.  True story.  I counted.  Then I had to sit down and review the 5,000 pictures and pick about 200 hundred to make a 20-minute video.  Yep.  It’s emotional and hilarious at the same time.  But you’ll; it’s tough condensing 180 days of kindergarten shenanigans into 20 minutes!   Each family receives a copy of the video as a keepsake of their child’s year in kindergarten!

You can check out some of our previous videos here:

2019-2020

2020-2021

End Of The School Year Ideas: Read Aloud

The very last thing we do together as a class is Mr. Greg crying as he reads the book, I Knew You Could!  Seriously, all the feels when reading this book.  All. The.  Feels.  After reading the book, I share with my students how much they’ve grown, how much we’ve learned and done in Kindergarten, how proud they should be of themselves, and how proud I am of them!

end of the year ideas

End Of The School Year Ideas And Activities

We also re-visit our name writing.  Way back on the first day of school, every student wrote their name on chart paper.  I save that chart and pull it out for the last week of school, and then we write our names to show our growth over the year!  (note:  This chart is October because that is when returned to in-person learning in 2020!)

end of the school year ideas name writing

One of my favorite traditions is having students design my blazer which I wear for Open House and Meet The Teacher Night the next school year!  The blazer is from Amazon.  Students use fabric markers and are free to design whatever they want!  I have many of these in my closet!

end of the school year kids decorate teachers clothes

Additional Resources:

If you want an easy resource to send home with students for the summer, grab our Take Home Packet Bundle

Lesson Plans!  Did you know you can access ALL of my lesson plans for the past 10 school years?!  TRUE STORY.   Just click this link to the resource center and grab the files!

For more ideas and resources, check out these posts:

 

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