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3 Great Suggestions for Teachers at the End of the Year

You might be done or very close to being done for the school year. Still, I wanted to cover 3 great suggestions I highly recommend for the end of the school year and before you exit for the summer. This might not be your typical list, but this list is from personal experiences.

A chalkboard and desk scene with an open book and pencil cup full of pencils. Text overlay says, "3 Great Suggestions for Teachers at the End of the Year."

If you're the type of person who shoves everything in the cupboards and closets and worries about it come late July or August, I see you. I am you! Spending one more minute at school come June, was not something I could fathom. I just had to escape, so shoving everything in closets and drawers and dealing with it later was my ideal situation. I am not here to tell you to do that differently. No, this list is less evident than that.

3 Great Suggestions for the End of the Year

1. Grab Food Before The Critters Do

On the right lies a yellow and orange pear and a piece of candy. A mouse is on its back legs, touching the pear with its front legs. The text on the image reads, "Grab food before the critters do." The word "critters" follows along the tail of the mouse.

Grabbing all food, snacks, and beverages may seem like a no-brainer to some and trivial to others, but I have learned the hard way that not doing this can ruin the start of a year. This can be especially true when things like student rewards or the fridge get forgotten.

I used to work in a modular, and we moved rooms right before we left for the summer. In the packing process, snacks and candy accidentally got packed. When I returned in late July, my room was coated in mouse droppings. They had eaten through boxes, gotten into snacks, and they had even eaten through a juice box corner. It was not pretty and took hours to clean up.

After that, I always took anything edible out of my room for the summer. Not to mention, I used that foaming spray to fill up all the holes I could find in the corners of the modular. Ah, the joys of working in a trailer.

2. Wipe Down Boards

A filthy whiteboard with the text overlay that reads, "Wipe Down Boards Thoroughly."

Secondly, make sure you wipe down boards when markers are fresh, and it is much easier for the marks to come off. I once inherited a whiteboard that the previous teacher had not adequately cleaned. It took over 30 minutes of diligent wiping and spraying and going over the marker again and again with a fresh marker to get the old stain off. It was no fun, and it was time I could have better spent elsewhere. So take two minutes and wipe all your boards clean before you leave.

3. Reflect on Your Year

A glass sand timer about halfway through with bright blue sand fills up the right-hand side of the image. On the left, in a crossword-style arrangement, are the words suggestions for the end of year to "PAUSE," "REFLECT," & "ACT."

Lastly, and on a more serious note, take some time to complete a reflection on your year. You can easily have the kids complete one, as well, using Google Forms.™ Think about what went well and what didn't. What did you not cover before state testing that you probably should have? What could you have left out that wasn't necessary? How were kids' needs best served? What flopped and shouldn't be repeated? What was a homerun and needs to happen again? Also, think about how school went for you socially. Where can you get more involved, and where can you pull back and have more time?

A glass sand timer with bright blue sand that is half-way through running. On the left is the text, "Reflection Materials"

By reflecting now, while thoughts are fresh, you'll be able to capture moments that won't happen in a week or two or in August. I know you're tired, but this reflection is really best served now. Then put it somewhere you'll easily find it come fall. You'll appreciate looking over it in August, and you'll have a leg up in your planning, remembering key ideas and details.

Grab your reflection materials here!

Suggestions for End of Year Tasks

What are your suggestions for end of year tasks? Share your ideas or routines with me in the comments. I'd love to know what you make sure to do before you leave for the summer each year.

If you want a list of three things to do each day before you leave the classroom, check out this post on Ways to Ease your Life with Afternoon Tasks.

The Colorado Classroom signature "Brittany" with a globe.

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