Teaching Ideas : Summer Goodbyes
The end of primary school is a significant milestone in a child’s educational career. It marks the transition into the next phase of their personal, social and academic development as they move from primary to secondary education secure in the knowledge of their own skills and abilities.
You can get the class to plan and perform an assembly for the school to recount memories of their time in primary school. The children can produce a scrapbook compiling some of their best work from the past year. The class can develop a guidebook containing information and advice for any new children who will be joining the school in September. Don’t forget to hold a party at the end of the term to make the children’s final days a memorable experience and allow them the opportunity of saying goodbye to their classmates and teachers.
The children can prepare and perform a special assembly for the school where they reflect on their achievements in primary school. Get some of the class to devise a multimedia presentation containing some text and images of past events and activities that they have participated in whilst at the school. Allow the children to bring in some photographs from home to scan and use as part of the presentation to illustrate descriptions of past school trips, exciting classroom activities and whole school events. During the assembly, get some children to write and share their memories of their time in primary school. The class can practise writing recounts of their school life as part of an English lesson. You can also use the assembly to award certificates to members of the school who have made significant achievements in the past school year such as making progress with their reading or building good friendships across the school. End the assembly by allowing the children to rehearse and perform a song of their choosing to reflect on their school life. As part of a music lesson, the children can try changing the lyrics to a popular song to describe their time in primary school which can then be performed during the assembly.
Help the children create a permanent record of their time in primary education by getting them to produce a scrapbook containing samples of some of their topic work from the past school year. Get the children to choose some of their outstanding pieces of work to stick into the scrapbooks. They can also add descriptive paragraphs about the work and any related topic. The class can also add some photographs to their scrapbook to show their time in primary school. Allow them to take photographs of the school community to add to the scrapbook along with some of their own photos brought in from home to illustrate how they have developed during their time in primary school. Encourage the children to write their memories of the past school years so that they have a record of some of the significant events and activities that have created their special time in primary education.
As part of a final English lesson, you can get the children to compose a school guidebook that can be given to any new pupils joining the school in September. Split the class into pairs and get them to select an aspect of school life such as dinner time or the school library. The children can then research the selected aspects before drafting and editing a report containing information and advice that might be useful for a new pupil. Encourage the children to choose suitable sentence structures and vocabulary to match the reading abilities of any new pupils so that the guidebook will be a welcome and useful introduction to their time in primary school. Allow the class to word process their completed reports and add suitable images and pictures to produce an easy to read document for new pupils to the school.
Make sure that you get the children to clean and tidy up the classroom in advance of their last day at school so that the class can spend the last time celebrating their time in primary education. Choose a couple of days in the final week of school to get the class to work together to organise the classroom. Split the class into groups and assign them different tasks to complete such as removing staples from any display boards, organising reading books in the class library or cleaning out the stock cupboard. During the clean up, the children can also select pieces of work which they would like to take home as a souvenir of time in primary school. Encourage the class to select their best work so that they have something to look back on with pride in future years.
Allocate the final day of the school year to allow the children to celebrate their time in primary school. In the morning, you can allow the children to visit some of their old teachers in the school to thank them for their help and support in previous years. The class could have made some cards and artificial flowers in an art and design lesson to give to their previous teachers. You can also get the class to spend some time sharing their thoughts about their time in primary school and their ambitions for the future. In the afternoon, hold a class party where the children can play some final games together. Make sure that you leave plenty of time before the end of the school day to say your goodbyes to the class and wish them success in their new schools. This final activity would provide an excellent opportunity to award certificates to everyone in the class for their work over the past school year. Don’t forget to get the class to have a final check that they have collected all of their belongings before leaving the school for the last time.
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