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4 End-of-Year Activities to Spice Up Your High School Classroom Routine

4 End-of-Year Activities to Spice Up Your High School Classroom Routine

As the end of the school year approaches, keeping your students’ attention is more difficult than ever. Wrapping up state testing and heading straight into final exams can be overwhelming for many students. Sometimes, getting creative with your classroom activities can be the key to engaging your students. Here are a few ideas to spice up your usual classroom routine:

This year’s newspaper

The end of the school year brings about reflection, so it’s important to give your students the opportunity to reflect on how far they’ve come. Instead of making another scrapbook or survey to reflect on the year, consider having students create a newspaper instead. Task students with creating an outline of the major events that happened throughout the year, both in school and outside of it. You could consider having this activity be in small groups or have each student in class write an article that goes into a collective class newspaper.

Blackout poetry

Blackout poetry is the practice of creating a poetic work by blacking out everything from a printed page except the words you want to be read. The end products can be a great way to reuse some papers from the classroom that you would have been getting rid of anyway. The theme everyone needs to cover can be the school year, their plans for the summer, or anything else. Add some extra challenge by having students’ poems fit a form, like a haiku. This activity has the added benefit of featuring subject-specific vocabulary from subject-specific reading materials. This article has examples and is a great resource for helping you get started.

Host a genius hour

As the school year ends and all of the curriculum has been taught, students may have more time to work on their hobbies or try out a passion project. Take a day in your class to let students work on a hobby of their choice, and host a genius hour. You could consider splitting up students into small groups to share about their hobby and learn about new projects or hosting a show-and-tell time at the end of the class period for students to share what they’ve been working on. Students can work on a project that is of their choosing, creating an environment where they’re more engaged and interested in their learning.

Motivate students with an end-of-year party or reward

Take some time to celebrate all that your students have accomplished throughout the school year with an end-of-the-year party or reward! Let your students know how proud of them you are and use an end-of-the-year party to keep them engaged and motivated until the very end. You can use a themed class period as a reward for good behavior, such as a class pajama party where you watch a movie with popcorn; a luau beach day with leis, punch, and balloon volleyball; or any other theme to grab your students’ attention. Or, if a theme isn’t your style, students always love a classroom pizza party or simple handwritten notes as a token of your thanks.

Educators, you’re so close to the end of the year—keep it up! To thank you for all the work that you’ve done so far, be sure to look out for Edmentum’s Educator Appreciation Giveaway!