I always laugh when people say that we should end school earlier in the year because the last few weeks are a waste. What do they think would happen if school stopped in April? Somehow I doubt the teachers or students would be any less eager for the last day. The way I see it, the only way to fix this problem is to never have a last day – or to never tell anyone when it is.
“Ok, boys and girls. Bus riders are dismissed and so are car-riders and walkers. Oh, and by the way, there’s no school for the next 2 1/2 months.”
Yep. That would go over well.
A surprise end-date probably won’t get the approval of any school board on this planet, so I recommend a surprise ending, instead.
What do I mean? I mean, don’t resort to the predictable, let’s-show-movies-and-wear-pajamas-and-read-all-day plans that are the fallback for so many teachers this time of year. This is your time to M. Night Shyamalan your way into teaching fame! (But not in a spooky “Guess what, you’re dead, too,” way – more in a “School is way more than filling in bubbles on a piece of paper” way.)
How can you surprise them? Here are some activities that could make the highlight reels of your students’ year.
- Play a Breakout Edu game.
- Do an Aurasma scavenger hunt.
- Let students do a QR Code Reflection.
- Use Hexagonal Learning to reflect on the school year. (Thanks to the GT teacher who gave me this idea!)
- Try some Word Cloud App Smashing.
- Make a Rube Goldberg Machine.
- Do a Mini Cardboard Box Challenge – what game can they make out of a shoe-box?
- Don’t you think it’s time to conduct the Ultimate Paper Airplane Competition?
- Do some Balloon-Popping math.
- Have a video game design contest.
- Give your students a Bottle of Dreams!
What suggestions do you have to make these last days memorable for your students? Put them in the comments below!