Congratulations! You're on the home stretch – the end of the school year is in sight!
Here's a checklist of tasks especially designed for special educators.
Every school has their own requirements and don't be surprised if they change from year to year. Packing up at the end of a long school year definitely needs to be handled with a bit of grace and a steady mantra of “progress, not perfection.”
It would be difficult to share a detailed list of all the to-do's you'll be facing, but I do have some tips that are sure to help in any school situation.
What would you like to see when you return in a few weeks? Answers will vary, but I know that I'm all about the “fresh start” when I walk back through the door.
This is the time to let yourself dream… what would you ideal classroom LOOK and FEEL like?
End of the School Year Reflection
I hope you didn't skip the “dream” step because it's really going to come in handy here. We're going to keep that North Star in mind as we begin to take action.
Ready? Go ahead and pick a spot in the classroom that you're ready to clean and pack up. I recommend picking an EASY spot to get the momentum going.
Special Educators – this doesn't have to be a physical spot, the same idea can apply to a data collection system, collection of work samples, and/or that stack of communication logs.
As you pack up, reflect on what you want to keep and what's a hard no.
Did I mention this process should be FAST? In my opinion, it works best if your decision making is a quick YES or NO.
At the end, you will hopefully have a lot less to organize and pack up!
End of Year Checklist for Special Educators
Here are the areas I divide and conquer:
Paperwork – making sure you know what needs to be filed and what can be pitched
Classroom – following school guidelines on what needs to be packed up and what can stay
Copies – SO.MUCH.PAPER, right? Make a plan of what you need to keep and, believe it or not, I've even run copies on the last days of school and then packed them up. If you've ever experience the Back to School copier traffic jam, you may want to consider this (or go digital!).
Turn your to-do's into tah-dah's!
These quick checklists will help you stay organized. They are open-ended to adjust to any school situation AND there's some lists of things to consider as you're getting ready to say goodbye for summer break.
The End of Year Checklists are available in the Special Educators Resource Room Bundle:
Don't Say Goodbye Just Yet…
I saved the best for last – these are the MUST DO tips for special educators at the end of the school year!
- TAKE PICTURES BEFORE YOUR PACK UP! Did your chill out zone work well for your students this year? Snap a photo! It will make it so much faster to recreate next school year. Sound Wall? Click, Click. Classroom Library? Say cheese!
- PACK UP BACKWARDS – Say what? Related to backwards planning, this tip has you packing things up in reverse. Trust me, it will make it SO MUCH easier to unpack. You don't want to be sifting through boxes of binder clips while trying to find the rocker chairs or clothesline for displaying student work. Your future self will thank you for thinking ahead!
Looking for more End of Year Tips?
I'm sharing these tips and more over at Positively Learning's YouTube Channel:
While you're there, be sure to hit subscribe for more differentiation tips.
Take care and good luck – it will ALL get done!