Creativity is key to keep learning at the end of the year

Allow students to work in small groups or alone.  Have them choose their favorite subject and something recently learned in the subject area.  Their assignment is to create a play, TV talk show, song, commercial, or any venue they want to teach a topic.  Give them class time to do this over the next few […]

End of the Year Structure

If you are thinking of packing up your room for the end of the year, remember that  if too much is gone too quickly, inappropriate behaviors could appear.  Students need their structure and predictability to the end.  Have students help with assigned jobs.  If removing something is too distressing to a student, let it remain.

Storytelling Props

Use props when reading a story aloud.  Even a few can increase studen attention, focus and motivation.

Keep your Cool

No yelling, no anger, no arguing… by the teacher.  We teach students NOT to do this – we should show how to keep control of our own emotions too.

Study Carrels

When placing orders for next year, order 1-2 desk study carrels for students who need more quiet surroundings during sustained work.  Then use the carrels for all students at different times so they are not perceived as negative.  You can also create a carrel with filing cabinets or classroom dividers, or buy carrels to place […]

R&R – Resolve or Report

Use R&R as a strategy when students argue or disagree.  “Resolve or Report” – give the students privacy and tell them to discuss together what happened.  The rule is they must take turns talking and LISTENING to the other.  At this time they can try to RESOLVE the problem themselves then tell you it is […]


If a student is involved in a competitive game siguation and always has difficulty participating – pull the student aside and give a structured choice (do you want to be the catcher, runner, score keeper, chaser?).  This can prevent behavior issues and increase participation, which should be the goal.  Competitive situations can be difficult for […]

Portfolios to Review the Year

Provide students with 3-hole page protectors.  Each day have them choose their most favorite piece of work that you or the team teachers have saved from each subject area.  They can begin the process of a portfolio for the last day of school.

Cue Cards

Provide a “cue card” for students who get anxious or angry to the point they melt-down or cannot focus or work.  The cue card can say: If I feel anxious or angry, I can:  push the “pause button” in my head, take 2 breaths, tell an adult I need to go to ___ or ___. Always have […]