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That’s a wrap!

As I was departing ceramics class last night, I realized that it was the last time I’d have my hands on clay or glaze for the rest of 2008. As we each left, we all wished each other a good holiday season and a Happy New Year. We said our good-byes, exchanged pleasantries about each other’s families, and then headed to our cars and back to our respective lives.

This scene reminded me of the last day of school in December when we send our kids off into the abyss of winter recess. (I say abyss because the kids often seem to return with the need for us to re-teach structures and classroom procedures that we thought were running smoothly before they left!) While I’ve always done activities right after they’ve returned to school welcoming in the new year (e.g., My students created One Little Word to live by in January 2008.), I’m starting to think that we need to have non-holiday related activities in December to help our kids close out the year… to reflect on where they’ve been, before they return in January when they start thinking about where they’re headed.

I’m going to invite my kids to reflect on 2008 by leaving a poem on their desks on Monday, 12/22. Then, perhaps they’ll create some of their own poetry about the year they just lived through. That’s all I have, so far. Hence, I’m looking to YOU for more ideas. If you do something special to wrap-up the calendar year before you send your kids off for their December break, please post a comment on this post. If I get 10+ ideas, then I’ll round-them-up and post them together in a separate post. THANKS, in advance, for your help.


olw, poetry, reflections

Stacey Shubitz View All

Literacy Consultant. Author. Former 4th and 5th Grade Classroom Teacher.

3 thoughts on “That’s a wrap! Leave a comment

  1. Hmmm… Your timely blog has made me think. (That’s the whole idea, right?)

    At the end of each quarter we try to take some time to reflect on the accomplishments and set some goals for each student. I think this ties in perfectly with your thoughts.

    I found a couple of sites that I think might help us to “remember” first semester. Beth Lewis has an example of an “I Remember” poem at Elementary Education. I like how this guides the students to think about their first impressions, a field trip, a math activity, etc…. I also found another sample and an online version that will print the created poem.

    I love the final line: But my favorite memory’s yet to come. Some memory-gathering at the end of the semester will set us up to write some goals when we return in January!


  2. One thing I did last year, and will do this year, was have my kids reflect on their first semester. What did they learn, like, enjoy? I then have them set goals for the next half of the year. Do they want to turn in reading logs on time? What about personal goals? I have them do this in their journals, and then I repsond over break. I open class our first day back by having them read my responses to them. It starts the year connected and reminds them of what they want to acheieve.


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