Celebrate The School Year
Not every school year is a graduation year, but every student deserves to celebrate the school year! It’s important to celebrate the school year, every year, even if this past school year has certainly been far from what students, teachers and parents are used to. With many students having to transition to online learning from their home during the pandemic, the change has had a significant impact on them. Many young learners of all age groups had a challenging time with limited social interactions with other students and lack of in-person school programs. In fact, young students are the social group likely to have been impacted the most during the COVID-19 pandemic. This end of school year, focus on their achievements during a non-traditional learning period.
Regardless of how difficult the pandemic may have made learning, it’s still important to celebrate the school year. The challenges COVID-19 has forced upon everyone is all the more reason to recognize students’ hard work. Celebrate the end of school year as a way to recognize and reflect on your child’s achievements and make goals for the next year.
Celebrate the Highs and Lows
COVID-19 did interrupt the traditional school year, however, it does not have to hinder end of school year celebrations! Wrap-up discussions and reflections are an effective way for students to process their experiences from the year. It allows students to have autonomy over their learning experiences and share that with you. Nontraditional instruction has made engaging with peers, teachers and even parents difficult. Which is why these final wrap up discussions are so vital. What should you include in an end of school year discussion with your young learner?
- Consider The Past and Future
When implementing a wrap-up discussion for the school year, try focusing on these two areas: a final assessment and wrap-up activities. Parents may have to get creative with assessments, as distance learning makes testing more complicated. To do so, try forming final questions for students to answer and reflect on their online learning experience. End-of-school year reflection points allow students to consider their achievements of the past and what they hope to improve on in the future.
A final project helps students prioritize and invigorate their creative expression which they may have felt was missing this year. Create an environment that focuses on the voice and choice of the student to allow them to self-assess. The final project will provide a more meaningful and interactive way of enjoying a final distanced learning year.
Make This Year Meaningful
2. Celebrating and Reviewing
At the end of school year, there should always be a sense of closure. Closure can also tie in with celebration. Ensure you honour the benchmarks and achievements of your child during this challenging school year. You can even uphold end of the year activities virtually. Although the celebrations may feel different to the previous year, they’re still important. Try getting creative with virtual end of school year celebrations from virtual ceremonies to talent shows or yard signs!
Implement an end of school year reflection discussion with your child based on growth. When you form the conversation around growth and goal setting, it helps their experiences feel validated. Even with preschoolers and young children, these meaningful conversations engage in the interests of the child and help them maintain learning momentum. Ask both simple and complex questions all with an encouraging tone. This is referred to as lifting language which models well formed sentences using difficult vocabulary to build up a child’s response.
Keep Learning Momentum Going All Summer
At GradePower Learning, our summer programs are designed to keep a student’s learning momentum going into the next school year. Learning should never stop at the end of school year! When children are not keeping their brain active, they could be vulnerable to summer learning loss. Fortunately, summer learning loss can be prevented with effective summer learning programs that bridge that gap between this year and into the next.