Q1: What final papers and projects do you do at the end of the year? Share favorites.
- Favorite end of year project = literary theme park https://goo.gl/1iIVRV students pick their favourite text to use
- In middle school, we wrote reflections & ten-year dreams. High school – we must give finals.
- I do a non-fiction “become the teacher project”. They read a non-fiction book and create a lesson for the class
- Seniors have been done for a few weeks, but ended the year with Genius Hour reflections for some and research paper for others
- This year we are doing a mini-research project where students work in groups to plan a vacay to part. locale to combine with
- For Juniors, it’s lots of Regents prep
- Our digital tools cert. so they will use Word, PP, Excel & Access to share their research
- Favorites: Making books with http://blurb.com and creating companies with @bizworldorg
- Explore with a PBL project, lit circles. Had one E3 class write children’s books for PreK class
- Students create games over different concepts and skills throughout the year. Or write a letter to next years class
Q2: Do you have final exams at the end of the year? How do you make review interesting for students?
- To make exam review fun I have students work through review stations in groups
- More ideas here: http://www.2peasandadog.com/2013/01/making-exam-review-fun.html
- No final exams for middle school but using @Kahoot! or @quizlet live always makes review fun
- Seniors just do their final paper, Juniors have NY Regents which is intense. Wish there were ways to make it more interesting
- Regents are all skills based so review is all practice essays
- We are playing Kahoot! We also will complete study guides together
- My final is them creating their own “perfect” society. They are writing a paper and preparing a speech with media
- Students could play the games they make that I mentioned in A1 for a review. Games could be hands-on or techie
- My “final” is our state test. I used @ClassDojo to gamify test prep: asked questions & then awarded students based on Dojo points
- One of my teachers is planning her final as student reflections on the year
- Also made videos, used @brainpop videos & @Flocabulary
- I have a final over the last six weeks material usually because it’s different from usual stuff. I try to use Kahoot to review
Q3: Share tips on how you stay healthy during this busy season.
- Summer fruit is in season, so lots of melon and salads! Hoping to also try out a jogging stroller with my little one this week
- Take grading outdoors! The sunshine makes it more bearable
- Healthy? Well…. I use (too much) hand sanitizer – does that count? 🙂 🙂
- I keep turning down sweets. They are everywhere this time of year
- Walk outside during lunch or conference period
- It is important to take time for self-care even if time seems impossible
- Tips to Avoid Teacher Burn Out http://www.2peasandadog.com/2015/12/tips-for-avoiding-teacher-burnout.html
- I try to get to bed at a normal time no matter how high the grading pile
- Personally, baseball helps the most, but I try to maintain the class routines established. Doesn’t always work but I try
Q4: Do you have any special end of the year celebrations in your classroom? Academics related or just for fun?
- Our 8th graders have a graduation ceremony with awards
- I have students write a letter to themselves at beginning of year and I return on one of last days of school
- Our 8th graders also have a grad, dance and awards
- I also have a ticket reward system and have an “ultimate drawing” on the last day with all prizes in brown paper lunch bags
- We are not! I think my school wants business as usual. They will get a small gift from me
- I like to read my seniors “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!”
- I have a final lesson that consists of little life things that I want them to know. And reminds them that I’m proud of them
- Cosplay costume contest, let’s the students become characters from any genre, time, etc. & really make a diff world in the class
- Prizes in bags so that no one knows what anyone is going to get! Keeps it fair as possible due to the timing of tickets. I award tickets for following directions, getting a question correct, 100% scores, small acts of kindness. Here’s a post about my system: http://mrsspanglerinthemiddle.blogspot.com/2015/10/top-3-classroom–behavior-tips.html
- We do a roundtable where we write compliments for each student on their own sheet. Borrowed from The Story of Mark Eklund
Q5: Share a lesson or tip for what to do with students on those really hot days.
- Brainstorm outside with sidewalk chalk!!
- Poems with chalk outside about summer
Check out these other blog posts full of great lessons and strategies.