It is June 1st, which means you are almost at the of this school year. YEA!!!! Now, is a good time to start planning for the last week of school, if you haven't already.
An activity I did with students, the last week of school, were Portfolio Presentations. I would meet with each student, (2-3 weeks before the end of school), and go through their work--math, writing, projects, drawings, journals, assessments. Students would select a piece of work from the beginning of the year and, in the same content area, a piece of work from the end of the year. We would conference on the significance of the selected work, e.g. why it was chosen, what it represents for the student, what is the difference between the 2 pieces of work, what did the student learn that makes the difference, can they demonstrate the learning. The students would write their responses, which are used for their oral presentation.
Math: the student selects a worksheet, from September, which demonstrates his capacity to do simple equations. The second worksheet, from May, represents the student's capacity to solve 3-digit subtraction equations with regrouping. For the presentation the student would read their responses from the questions and then demonstrate how to solve a 3-digit subtraction equation with regrouping.
Reading: the student selects a book they read in September and then a book they are currently reading. They respond to the questions. For the presentation the student would read the responses then read a passage from the first book and then from the latest book.
Writing: the student would select a piece from the beginning of the year and a current piece. For the presentation the student would read their responses then share their work. This can be done by copying the writing onto a transparency or by using an Elmo, or copying onto a computer and showing on a Smart board.
Art work: the student selects a piece of art from the beginning of the year, perhaps a drawing and a piece from the end of the year. For the presentation the student reads their responses, shares the art work and demonstrates/describes a technique that they have learned.
Music: the student selects a piece of music they learned at the beginning of the year and one they currently play/sing. For the presentation they read their responses, play the 1st piece, then the 2nd. To take this to the next level, the student could write their own piece of music to play/sing.
The presentations were done as part of a class breakfast. Parents/families, colleagues, administrators and anyone else who wanted to, came to this event. It was very powerful to hear and see the students share their learning. The students took this event very seriously and really put in the effort into their presentations.
I hope you will consider this activity as you begin to plan for the end of the year.
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