As this school year comes to an end, you are probably feeling a range of emotions! Your students are certainly also feeling a range of emotions, from excitement to anxiety. You and your students worked hard all year building community, getting to know one another’s strengths and areas of growth, and centering student voice and agency. The end of the school year provides a meaningful opportunity to celebrate the community you have co-created with students.
So, as we transition to summer break, here are a few student-centered ideas to celebrate your classroom community to wrap up the year.
- Transition Together – students can give practical advice to their peers in the grade below them. Perhaps they can put together “Operating Instructions for being a 4th Grader at ______ Elementary School.”
- Tour Guides – could students lead classroom tours to the rising cohort? (i.e., 4th graders give 3rd graders a tour of their classroom).
- Learn From Students – invite students to re-teach their favorite thing that they learned this year. This supports learning for the whole class and makes space for student voice.
- Compliment Routines – invite all students to write down one compliment about their classmates and educators on strips of paper. On the last day of school, display the compliment strips on a wall.
- Gratitude Garden – using paper flower cutouts, ask students to illustrate or write three things they are grateful for this school year. Hang the gratitude flowers around the classroom for all to appreciate.