One of the things I love about teaching at an extended campus is that I get to really know an entire cohort of students, because they are my students two (and sometimes three) times over. However, that bond can make the end of the spring semester an emotional challenge as those students leave the nest to fly away to the main campus and their degree programs. As we approach the end of our semester and those farewells I have spent a lot of time thinking about the best ways to wrap up our semester write. I want to celebrate the community and relationships we have built; I want to honor the ways these students have grown as humans and students; and I want to mark the end of this journey we have taken together while simultaneously acknowledging that this is also the beginning of new journeys for us all. That’s a big ask and I’m still not sure what my plan for ending the semester will be, but here are some of the ideas I’m adding to the pot while I let it simmer.
My own idea bank includes “3 Ways to Beat End-of-Semester Stress” with special emphasis on “Celebrating Ourselves” and “Faking It.” I believe it is essential to culminate the semester with reflection and that is built into my final assessments for every class, but I’m hoping for the perfect balance of fun, celebration, and reflection. I’m going to re-read a Notable Notes about wrapping up that I wrote a few years ago in hopes I will find more inspiration.
Some other ideas to throw in the stew:
- Art teacher Tracy Hare inspires her students’ end-of-class reflections with a fun interactive activity focused on the question “What is art?”
- Donna Wilson and Marcus Conyers share the concept of year mapping to demonstrate learning and reflect.
- Vicki Davis shared eight tips to exit celebrating.
- Lisa Keeler discusses ending the year with intention.
How do you wrap up your year with reflection, celebration, and intention? How do you wrap up your year with writing and creation? What do you think are the most important considerations for your intentional end-of-year (or semester) activities?
Artwork by Michitogo on Pixabay