In this handy guide, we’ve shared 5 last day of school activities that will prime your classes for summer vacation, while also encouraging them to keep reading during the break. The last day of class should be fun and easygoing, giving your students a chance to reflect on the entire school year. If you create a smooth transition between the busy school schedule and summer’s lazy days, students will be more empowered to use their free time wisely.
Now that your students have experienced the ups and downs of your syllabus, it’s time for them to share some sage advice with the incoming class. Each student can write a general letter to a future student, with some pointers for success. Ask them to share their favorite lessons and activities, along with their biggest takeaway from the class.
For a fun wrap-up activity, you can create a board game based on major events and class lesson plans, with a few inside jokes that make students smile. For example, if you took a beach field trip for biology class, you might include an obstacle like “A seagull ate your turkey sandwich — lose a turn.” This is a great way to reminisce about the best moments from the school year, in the form of a enjoyable game.
Many students will be trading yearbooks with friends during the last week of school, so they can write personal messages to each other and stay in touch over summer. You can set aside the last 15 minutes of class for yearbook signing, and create a “class yearbook” for students to share their appreciation and personal experiences in your class.
On a long sheet of butcher paper (or individual sheets for each month), students can collaborate and create a timeline of the school year together. This activity encourages teamwork and helps students jog their memories for pivotal moments, which will be different for everyone. By the end of class, the timeline will be filled with important lessons, field trips, tests, and more.
Finally, you can create a special award that honors each student’s talents, and host a awards ceremony on the last day of class. Make sure that every award highlights a positive attribute, such as a student’s sharp memory, handwriting, punctuality, or positive attitude.
We hope these last day of school lesson plans prime your students for a relaxing vacation, while also encouraging self-guided learning during the break. Like these tips? See other educational resources for more!