May is the second busiest month of the school year for teachers. At least in August, we’ve gotten rid of the sleepy dark circles and are renewed with energy and enthusiasm. In May? Forget about it. Teachers are spent! That’s why I’ve put together my 5 ways to end the school year and start summer break with a clear conscience. Aside from the “have to’s” on the to do list, I wanted to provide some easy ways to tackle the extras you shouldn’t forget about, so you can start next school year fresh and well-rested.
1. Start cleaning out the classroom and your personal desk area. Find a few minutes to file the loose papers and sort through the stuff to get the trash in the can or recycle unnecessary items. Only keep student artifacts if they are truly valuable examples of work for future classes. Otherwise, take a few pictures and pitch them!
2. Put away class sets of books that aren’t being used and do your book inventory for novels or textbooks. I always take my kids on the last class day directly to the book closet. I make them line up and record who turned in what. The whole process takes 10 minutes. Bonus? They did the hard labor, not me! This step also includes your classroom library. Notify students who’ve borrowed books and shoot to have everything back in stock no later than Memorial Day weekend.
4. Take down and pack up decor and anchor charts around the room. Clean out student areas like personal mailboxes, lost and found items, and hand back student writer’s journals. Have students help you on an exam review day. Elects a few students to help dismantle bulletin boards, store board elements you will keep for next year, throw away paper and borders, and remove those pesky staples. Also, consider a Clorox sheet challenge: who can finish with the dirtiest sheet. Each class period could take 15 minutes to complete one task in the room, something that would take you hours to complete on your own. Many hands make light the work, so they say!
5. Once the room is bare and clean, complete necessary work orders to repair room or technical equipment and send to your designated custodial/maintenance offices. Don’t forget to put your name and room number on things that could walk off, podiums and bookcases are a great example of this!
Time to enjoy summer break!
Need a couple of ELA activities for exam review or just to fill the time between exams and the last day of school? Check out these resources from my TPT store!
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