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Checklist for Wrapping up the School Year

Friday, April 7, 2023

Weekly Desk Calendars at House of Doolittle

For many teachers and students, it seems that one minute it is August, and then the next minute, it is May. At least, that is what it feels like, as everyone makes lists and plans to finalize the school year. While we often focus on the beginning of each school year, the end of the final grading period or semester is just as important. 

It has been a long academic year for all school staff and students, filled with assignments, activities, and friendships. We have used our academic calendar planners and class record planners well, but it is time to close the book as the end draws near. As the final days approach, there are tasks teachers and students can do to finish on a high note. Let's look at a few things that can help bring everything to a proper close.  

For Teachers… 

Reflect on the year. Take some time to look back on the past academic year. Think about what worked well, what did not work at all, and what could be improved for next year. This will help you plan for the future and make any necessary adjustments that help maintain a pathway to success. 

Celebrate students’ achievements. Recognize and praise the accomplishments of your students throughout the year. This can include academic achievements, personal growth, and extracurricular goals. Every student has achieved something; otherwise, they would not have made it to the end of the year! 

Conduct end-of-year assessments. Evaluate and document your students’ progress such as grades and other marks and understanding of the material covered. Use the results of this qualitative and quantitative data to inform your instruction for the next academic year, and beyond.  

Organize classroom materials. Take the time to organize all the remaining supplies and resources. This allows you to be organized for the new year to start in the fall and will help you determine the items that need replenishing, like weekly desk calendars. Make a note of textbooks, paper and writing implements, academic calendar planners, and art supplies.  

Provide feedback to students. This is valuable for students of any age. Offer constructive feedback to your students about their performance throughout the year. This conversation can include academic progress, behavior, and work habits. 

Provide students with suggestions to prevent brain drain. You do not want to let all that hard work go down the summer brain drain! Remind students to read books over the summer, visit their local library, practice multiplication tables, and create arts and crafts. Remind them there are fun ways to keep learning.  

Say goodbye to your students. This is the hard part because teachers can become attached to everyone in their classroom. Remind them that they had an impact on you and helped you to become a better teacher. Wish them a fun and exciting summer filled with friendship and joy. 

Reflect with your colleagues. Compare achievements and discuss different approaches to improving performance and results. Reinforce that there is strength in numbers and that everyone's feedback supports each other's efforts.  

Reflect on your growth. Think about your experiences and development throughout the school year. Be kind to yourself and say, "Job well done." Allow yourself some rest but remember to take your own advice by continuing to learn and grow.  

For Students… 

Reflect on the year. Think about your experiences throughout the school year. What did you learn about your strengths and weaknesses? What did you excel in -language arts, math, science? What do you want to work harder on for the next school year? 

Celebrate your achievements. Where did you experience success? This could be in academics, personal growth, sports, and extracurriculars. Acknowledge to yourself that you accomplished many things and appreciate the results.  

Finish assignments. Consult with your teachers. Complete any outstanding homework, projects, quizzes, tests, and essays. You will feel a deep sense of accomplishment knowing everything has been completed.  

Clean and organize. It has been a long year, and things have accumulated. Make sure you clean out your desks, lockers, and backpacks. Determine which items to keep for future use and which need replenishing.  

Return what you borrowed. As you clean and organize, remember to return textbooks, library books, headphones, tablets, or computers to avoid late fees.  

Say goodbye to your classmates. This is hard because you have been with your friends all year. Make sure you exchange phone numbers, email addresses, or social media connections to stay in touch and strengthen your friendships.  

Say goodbye to your teachers. They have been with you every step of the way during this school year. They put in long hours, often spend their own money for supplies and treats, and worry about each one of you every day. Tell all teachers, administration, coaches, and other staff thank you, and say that you appreciate the difficult job they do. And make them prouder of you as you advance through each year.  

Plan for the future. Think about what you want to achieve during summer break to be even more prepared for the next school year. This can include reading more books, visiting a museum, or practicing for sports teams' tryouts. Keep moving, thinking, and learning!  

Wrapping up the school year involves just a little more work and some valuable reflection. It also requires a bit of planning. As you decide what you need for next year's classroom, remember to include your academic calendar plannersclass record planners, and weekly desk calendars to ensure that you and your classroom are organized now and in the future.  

Great job, teachers and students! It's a wrap!