What do you need to do before term finishes?
The end of term is almost nigh! Another school year is coming to a close and we can practically smell the sandy beaches and pitchers of margaritas. However, in true school fashion, this final half term is just as jam packed as the others, where an awful lot needs to be done!
Fear not, we are here to help with you a handy checklist of ‘things to do‘ before the summer holidays.
10 things to do before the end of term
1. Photograph your displays
Photographs of your ‘vision’ are super handy for Teaching Assistants and eliminate the need to reinvent creative ideas. Keeping all of your signs, posters etc. in a labelled file will also make your life that little bit easier. If you are staying in the same year group, you will really thank your Term 3 self in September when it comes to creating display boards.
2. Back it up
There’s nothing worse than finding out the IT team have restored all computers, in turn deleting all of your planning.
Each year, buy a new pen drive and store all of your hard work in a safe place. If you are super organised, you might even organise your files into separate subject folders, making for much easier access to documents.
3. Spring clean
It might be summer, but there’s no time like the present for a good old spring clean! If possible, chat to the teacher who is taking over your room to find out exactly what they would like you to keep. More often than not, teachers want a completely blank canvas, allowing you to completely declutter.
If you are staying in the same room, you might want to consider making new tray names and labels to get a head start for the next academic year.
4. Collect bags!
Children are laden with books to take home at the end of the school year and so start collecting those bags for life! No matter how many reminders you send home, there will always be a couple of children who forget them!
Start early, staggering the amount of books that children take home each day, and put the children in charge of tidying and cleaning their own tray.
5. Pass on information
Google Docs is a great option for passing more detailed information on to future teachers.
Your work will automatically be saved and can be shared with all the relevant members of staff. If your school has a team drive, you may already be able to access SEND information about the class you are receiving in the Autumn.
6. Hold a lost property amnesty
Spread all of the lost property on the cloakroom floor, forcing the cherubs to decide if that is in fact their odd sock.
All lost property that is unaccounted for can be used in the second hand clothes sale, or failing that a trip to the local clothes bank.
7. Organise goodbye gifts (for free!)
For Key Stage 2 children, they may appreciate you creating a Spotify playlist, where they can listen to the soundtrack of their year. Buying thank you gifts for other members of staff can be a bit of a rush, so scheduling time to buy these early doors will also relieve some stress in the final few weeks.
In the midst of all the chaos, take time to reflect on your year.
What has gone well, which students have made the most progress, what are you proud of?
Every teaching year goes by in a flash, and it’s so important to slow down and thank yourself for the hard work and effort you’ve put in. You might want to note down any teaching and learning strategies or behaviour management techniques that really worked for you, or goals that you have for the next academic year.
9. Start thinking about the Autumn term
A horrendous thought, but when your head is still in ‘teacher mode’, you may find that you are able to map out a rough plan of first week back activities much more quickly than you would during the summer holidays.
Knowing that you have a bank of resources at your fingertips for when you return to school may make you sleep that little bit easier in those final few days of the holidays.
It’s the final term, you’ve almost made it – it’s time to start thinking about yourself.
Make plans for your summer holiday and create a list of what you want to do and who you want to see. Teaching can be all consuming at times, where holidays are crucial for allowing us to recharge, switch off and totally relax.
Without a doubt the final half term should be when we start to wind down, so checking off a ‘to do’ list may help you feel more relaxed and ready for the holidays. Taking the time to prepare a few bits and bobs for your new class can relieve some of the pressure for when you return to school, and don’t forget to allow yourself to feel just a tiny bit smug for being so organised and on the ball! Happy holidays!