As we move through the last few weeks of school, you may be searching for a memorable way to send your students off to summer break. Because many schools across the country are still distance learning, this can be challenging if the only way you see your students is through video calls.
Luckily, you still have plenty of options if you want a heartfelt way to commemorate the year and say goodbye to your students. Check out these 51 ways to end the school year with a last hurrah, including ideas for in-person and distance learning classrooms!
26 End-of-Year Gifts, Activities, and Ideas for an In-Person Classroom
1. Fill out a memory book together to reflect on the best moments of the past school year.
2. Make paper graduation caps for a festive way to celebrate moving on to the next grade.
3. Help your students create time capsules so they can preserve memories for their future selves.
4. Hold a field day with plenty of outdoor games for a memorable celebration.
5. For an icebreaker activity to wrap the year up, try End-of-the-Year Bingo.
6. This “Letter to a Future Student” Mad Libs is sure to provide plenty of laughs for your class.
7. These cute little Goodbye Stars make a great keepsake for your students.
8. Read one of these children’s books about the end of the school year, like Last Day, Hooray by Nancy Poydar or Junie B. Jones is a Graduation Girl by Barbara Park.
9. Your students have a bright future ahead of them! Celebrate their growth with this colorful craft.
10. Have theme days in your classroom, like STEM Day or Game Day.
11. This free printable makes a great end-of-year countdown to share with your students.
12. Hand out End-of-Year awards to recognize your students’ accomplishments this year.
13. For educational end-of-year games, try one of these STEM challenges.
14. Put together Memory Wheels and draw some of your favorite events over the past school year.
15. When life gives you lemons, have an end-of-year lemonade tasting day.
16. Make your own mini yearbooks and have your class write encouraging messages to each other in them.
17. Put together these ice cream-themed keepsakes, then consider sharing a treat.
18. For an activity that will help children practice the reading skills they’ve learned, share this end-of-year poem.
19. Relax after a busy school year with some themed coloring pages.
20. Early elementary students may have fun singing along to this baby-shark-themed graduation song.
21. Help your students fill out their summer goals with this flip book activity.
22. This balloon popping activity is a delightful way to do something new each day until the end of school.
23. Celebrate with a movie day using these helpful tips.
24. For a personalized keepsake, give each student a character rock that shares a short compliment.
25. Remind your students that you had a “Hoot of a Time” learning together with this cute craft.
26. This Last Day of School Autographs activity can make for great memories and a sweet keepsake, too.
25 Virtual End-of-Year Gifts, Games, and Activities
27. Write a heartfelt end-of-year email or letter to your students about how much you’ve enjoyed teaching them this year.
28. Make an end-of-the-year playlist full of songs to get your students pumped about summer.
29. Create a class blog (#2 at the link) to keep your students connected over the summer.
30. Give your students this COVID-19 time capsule activity so when they see their classmates in person again, they’ll be able to open it and reflect on what life was like during the pandemic.
31. Share pictures of your students and classroom from before quarantine via a virtual album to reflect on fun memories.
32. In lieu of a real-life field trip, hold a virtual field trip with your students during the last week of school.
33. Ask your students to write end-of-year reflections to help them realize how much they’ve grown.
34. Create an end-of-year slideshow and share it with your students during a video call.
35. Schedule a video conference with each family in your class instead of end-of-year parent-teacher conferences.
36. Have your students gather items for an indoor scavenger hunt and share their findings with their classmates.
37. Put together this simple water bottle gift as a keepsake for your students.
38. Hold a virtual talent show and invite each of your students to share something they’re proud of.
39. Share some of your favorite picture books through an online end-of-year read-aloud.
40. Put together a virtual end-of-year award ceremony to celebrate student growth.
41. Have a class graduation car parade where each family can drive by the school and wave goodbye to you and other classmates from a distance.
42. Host a Kahoot game based on things you taught this year for an educational end-of-year activity.
43. Try one of these distance learning twists on popular party games like Charades or Simon Says.
44. Send out this printable for students to make their own class memory books from home.
45. Share a survey out to parents or older students so they can provide you with comments and feedback you can use for next year.
46. Make and print these wordle bookmarks (scroll to the bottom of the link) to keep your students reading through the summer.
47. Try this virtual escape room game ( second idea at the link) as a fun and unique way to wrap up the school year.
48. Make this frisbee gift for your students so they’ll have a fun way to remember class while they play outside this summer.
49. Have an online show and tell so your students can share an item that means a lot to them with their classmates.
50. Instead of an in-person field day, share this field day word search with your class.
51. Host a video call and have a fun conversation with your students based on these end-of-school “Would You Rather?” questions.