The end of the year can be a stressful time… kindergarten end of year activities are no exception. There is so much to do! Between report cards, end of year assessments, class placements, parent meetings, end of year parties and gifts, and keeping the class engaged while everyone is thinking about summer and changing grades… it is a lot! Well guess what… it doesn’t have to overwhelm you! I have some simple ways to make your end of the year stress free!
Kindergarten end of the year activities
I find that students get really anxious about the end of the year as soon as conversations start happening about kindergarten end of year activities. This is exactly why I do not do an end of the year countdown. In order to help ease any anxieties, I like to use this free social story. I also make sure to keep students engaged who are already thinking about summer. For this, I like to do theme days for the last month of school. You can read all about them in depth here.
I start out with some simple days, like wacky hat day or PJ day, where we can still follow our normal schedule and continue with any academics we have to wrap up. However, by the end of the year, we have finished all the district mandatory academics and I need to fill time. Enter more exciting and interactive theme days, like beach day, pirate day, and board game day! These kindergarten end of year activities help keep my class engaged and excited to come to school everyday (and me as well!).
Kindergarten end of the year report card comments
Filling out report cards is probably one of the biggest drains on my precious time at the end of the year. I am thankful that I only have to fill out standards for each student (110 of them to be exact….), as opposed to filling out standards AND writing comments for each child. One tip I’ve learned though about writing comments is to have a bank of report card comments that you can copy and paste from. So this year, save all your comments so that next year, you can search through and copy and paste the same themes and ideas for your students! Saves you so much time! I have even more tips in my FREE guide on easing the stress of parent-teacher communication.
Kindergarten end of year gifts
I personally do not believe in buying my students kindergarten end of year gifts. I do not believe that they need a gift for finishing the year, nor do I want to spend my hard-earned money on gifts for each student when I already spend so much on them throughout the year. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t buy your students gift – you should do what is best for you and your class! I am simply writing this because the pressure on social media can feel like every teacher gives gifts to their students and you have to as well… nope! This is your out.
What I do give my students is a portfolio of their work from throughout the year. I save all of their important papers and put them together in a binder or I bind them together in a book. I also take apart all of our class books and put those pages into the portfolio as well. The children and families absolutely love looking through at the progress the students have made from September to June.
I also have my students create a kindergarten end of year memory book in the final days of school. They reflect on all that they have learned and their favorite parts of school. This would also be a great “gift” to send home or give to families.
Kindergarten end of year assessment
Checking in with students one final time and assessing them is important, not only for report cards, but to inform next year’s teacher. I also use these check-ins to share with families if I see a child is still not reaching the end of the year benchmarks. I use my kindergarten assessments to track their progress throughout the year and do one final check-in at the end of the year. Also, I show the students their growth and they are always very proud to see all that they have learned.
Kindergarten end of year activities don’t have to be stressful or overwhelming! By planning fun theme days, using saved report card comments, giving a portfolio of student work, and using assessments from throughout the year for one final check-in, your end of the year can be stress-free and will fly by!
Have you tried any of these tricks? Which one is your go-to kindergarten end of year activity?