Tuesday, June 4, 2013

End of Year Letter - 2013

This is one of those posts bloggers do to remind themselves of changes to make for next year. Nothing to see here. Move along.

At the end of the year one of the things I do is go to Target and buy 100s of Thank You cards. I think the pack I bought this year was $2.99 for 50. I ask students to write a thank you to a person at the school. It is usually a teacher but can be anyone. Our "student advisor" (AKA the huge guy that yanks kids out of class) gets a lot of cards as do the people that run the afterschool program. My only rule is that it can't be to me. Some kids do only one. I think this year one student wrote five. Then I drop them in mailboxes. It's a nice thing, especially for the 6th grade teachers who assume they have been forgotten.

I showed my students the Neil Tyson "Most Astounding Fact" video as the introduction and mentioned that this is where my introduction came from. Since I asked them to write Thank Yous yesterday I also included a thank you. Then I just gave them the letter. Like Sam, ideally I'd like students to keep it in their yearbook and randomly stumble on it every few years.

I tried to keep it to one page because I'm not entirely sure 8th graders will read even that much.

I over-edited and the transitions are ugly. I also took out the more personal stuff in favor of broader stuff. I think that was a mistake. I should have definitely left in, "Future classes will look up at the ceiling, see the smoke stains, and know that we were here."


  1. I have my kiddos write letters to the music, art, and P.E. teachers and the librarian at the end of each year. I started it because it was a good thing for us to do when we had to return all our books and were packing up the classroom. Then I realized how amazing it is that first graders can do this when at the start of the year they couldn't write a complete sentence. I've just done it on plain paper. I love the idea of notes. It will make it more special for the kids as they write it. Awesome. Thanks.

  2. I knew you were being crazy when you were being critical. Your letter is amazing.