We’ve been anticipating the end of the school year for a while now. It’s exciting. A couple months break to spend time in the sun, reading books for pleasure, going on vacation or sitting on the couch watching mindless TV. Or maybe you want to be productive and prepare for next school year, then check out this post. Whatever you choose to do on your summer break, you want to get to it quickly. I think we often forget all of the tasks that have to be done before we can close down our classrooms for the summer. I want to get through these tasks so quickly that I often underestimate my time or how much I need to get done. It’s almost agonizing. Like dangling a carrot in front of a horse.. JUST GIVE ME SUMMER BREAK! Here are some amazing tips to help us all wrap up the end of the school year quickly.
Ideas For Wrapping Up The End Of The School Year Quickly
Take a picture of your current classroom state, as advised by Mashup Math. This will help you see and remember what worked and what didn’t when it came to your classroom. This will be mostly beneficial when you are setting up your classroom next year.
Give yourself a little time to go through your classroom library. This will give you a quick inventory of what you have and if any books needs to be fixed or discarded.
You don’t want to have boxes filled with a modge podge of stuff. Just like when packing a house, packing similar items together is key. Keep one box aside for essential items. Krazy Town Blog suggests labeling this box ‘Open Me First’. She includes such things as “stapler & staples, scissors, tape dispenser, blank labels for labeling student materials, file folder of back to school ideas, bulletin board decor, etc”. These are all things that you will need to even start setting up your classroom.
Throw away anything that is trash or that you are saving just to save. If it is worth it, donate or sell it, but if you haven’t used it in a while – get rid of it!
Have a basket of things you’d like to take home. Jennifer Solis and Jenifer Boatwright might take home professional development books, lesson plans, or pacing plans. I also have a box of stuff that I can clean from home. For instance glue bottles, scissors, or phonics phones, or smaller bins can be washed in the dishwasher.
Get a planner for next year. Lucky To Be In First created one that is super cute. I like to get mine early so I can jot down any thoughts I have about next year straight into the planner.
Label Everything. Just label everything.
Another great tip from Lucky To Be In First is, as you are cleaning up and storing things away, take inventory of what you have. This could be as simple as taking pictures with your phone or writing it on a spreadsheet, whichever is better for you. This will make back to school shopping SO much easier. Plus as you see a sale throughout the summer, you won’t have to go into your classroom to check your stock first.
Collect required paperwork, anything you’ll need copies for next year and make a pile (or put in a folder). This is anything for classroom organization, lesson plans, sub plans, etc. You can print one from home and make copies when you get back to school later in the summer. Or another great idea from Teaching My Friends is to prep the first week’s paperwork before you leave for the summer. Then at least that is ready, right?
One of my biggest tips of all, especially if you teach an older grade, is involve your students. They have been in this classroom the whole year and know where things go. Get them to help you put things away or even move things around. They will most likely love to help!
Instead of packing bookcases into boxes, go to a big box store and get large roles of plastic wrap. You can literally wrap your bookcases up, as is. All you have to do next year is cut the plastic wrap and throw it away.
As I’m going around, doing my end of the year tasks I have two lists going: To Do & To Buy. Creating these lists as I go help me to not forget anything important, either big or small.