No matter what time of year school ends for you, there seems to be an endless list of items to do before you can head off for vacation.
After the fun of the end of the year, this year-end teacher checklist will help you wrap up your year.
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Build your checklist
Before you start throwing things in the trash or filling boxes, take a few minutes.
Think about what you need to do — and start creating your own personal year end teacher checklist.
Your school has probably provided you with a list of things you need to do before you can “check out.” But think about what else you want to do.
Keep reading for suggestions:
Year end records & grades
This is probably the most important item on your end of the year teacher checklist.
Your final grades and permanent records may be digitally documented, but make sure you check with your administrators as to how to handle any grade books, final exams, or portfolios.
It’s a good idea to save your grade books — just in case your school doesn’t.
You probably have sensitive information, emails, notes, and records on your computer and in your desk. Pay attention to person information about students that needs to be shredded. Make sure you know what will happen to the information on your teacher computer.
This includes any of your own private information!
Sort & toss
Even though we want to live in a paperless classroom, you probably still have papers.
Rather that tossing them in a drawer or box, go through them quickly deciding whether to save or toss.
I love using these plastic drawers for saving extra copies for students. Or, if you have a classroom set of magazines, these drawers are perfect storage. Also great for markers, index cards, colored pencils, scissors…all those things that you collect at the end of the year.
If you have a student helpers, have them check every marker and glue stick to make sure they are salvageable.
Collect student samples
A great addition to your year end teacher checklist is an item to collect student samples.
As the school year ends, ask for samples of their work.
It is flattering to your students, and most are willing to share if you tell them that you need the samples to help your students next year.
Student samples will be a helpful teaching tool to show new students examples of what you are aiming for.
Label and organize student work so you can find it quickly as you introduce a new project next year.
An important tip!
Don’t turn down anyone’s work! You would never want to discourage a student from sharing.
Collect it and decide next year what you want to use. Of course, you are only using student samples to show the best work — never as a “don’t do this” example.
Make a quick assessment of your classroom. Are there desks that need to be repaired? Is the bookshelf wobbly? Did your trashcan go missing?
Summer is the best time for maintenance requests to get fulfilled, so take advantage of that.
Think about the supplies your students actually used this year.
You may have had grand ideas at the start of the year for them to complete a daily journal, only to find out that after three entries there wasn’t time to keep this going.
I am in the minimalist camp when it comes to school supplies for middle school! It’s hard for students to keep track of notebooks, binders, folders for each class. I like using one resource notebook for everything (the table of contents is the secret to doing this!!).
Using digital resources will help tremendously. But, if you don’t have access to computers for each student, consider how you can utilize paper folders. I love using these for writing projects and it cuts down on bulky binders and spirals.
Year end self-assessment
If you haven’t completed your own self-assessment, be sure to do that! It’s incredibly helpful!
Or you can ask yourself two questions:
What went well?
I know we always think we’ll remember from one year to the next, but we don’t! Jot down the things you’ll repeat next year, and what you can do to improve on.
What about next year?
At the end of the year, all you want to do is lock your classroom (and dance off into the sunset!).
But first do this as you end the school year:
- make sure you know where your materials will be when you return to your classroom.
- You may want to label a shelf for teacher manuals, binders, and supplemental reading materials.
- Put your self-assessment in your planning folder, binder, or calendar so you can review it when you return to school.
- Things can change over a break, so take any important personal items home with you. You would feel terrible if the special author’s stool you made went missing or if you couldn’t find your favorite book to read at the start of the school year.
When it is time for you to start your break, close your classroom door and LET GO!!!
It’s time for you to relax and take some time to recharge.
The break will go by quickly, so don’t carry around regrets from this past school year. Take a break from it all so you are ready to start fresh!
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With gratitude for all you do,