5 End of the Year Activities for Elementary Students

Can you feel it? The weather’s warming up, the days are stretching longer, and summer is on the horizon. The end of the school year is peeking around the corner, and our students at every grade level have definitely caught the summer bug! Honestly, who can blame them? We’re feeling the itch, too, as our thoughts of summer plans begin to frequent our minds. But, let’s not let the impending summer break dull the momentum we have created with our kids in our classrooms. I’m excited to share with you my top five end-of-the-year elementary activities. These activities spritz a burst of fun into those final weeks as we count down to the last day of school, making the school days pass by like a summer breeze. 

Use these 5 End of the Year Activities for Elementary Students  to wrap up an amazing year with your kiddos.

Reflecting on Learning at End of the Year

I always try to pause and reflect on the time I’ve spent with my kiddos. I find myself reflecting the most when we get to the end of the year. It’s a great time to notice how my kiddos have grown physically and academically. I observe the different shifts that take place in the classroom as the year goes on, such as new friendships, changes in interests, and even changes in emotions. I am always amazed to look back and see what we have accomplished so far in the months we have had together. This always makes me want to celebrate all the hard work they have done throughout the year! Plus, including engaging activities has some benefits.

Using end of the year activities will help both you and your students reflect on the amazing work and achievements made during the school year.

As my students are participating in these activities, I know we don’t have much time but we continue to create memorable moments. Our classroom environment remains a positive space for learning. There’s less fidgeting, distractions, and wandering minds. They focus, interact with each other, and continue to practice the skills they are working on. 

As we near the last days of school, I know it feels like we are just surviving, but let’s flip the script! With thrilling activities that catch our students’ attention, we can end the year on a high note! Each of these engaging activities goes beyond a movie day or a letter of the alphabet countdown. They are interactive learning activities that your students are going to love and won’t take you a lot of time to plan.

5 End of the Year Activities for Elementary to Try

1. End of the Year Lapbook

One of my favorites for this time of year is the End of the Year Lapbook. The process of completing it is always so worth it in the end when they see the final product. It’s almost like a time capsule for them to look back on in the later years! Not to mention, it’s a great opportunity for reflection for the kiddos too!

I give each of my students the necessary pieces and, depending on the step, will hand them out one at a time so nothing gets lost in the shuffle. They each receive a printed graduation cap to cut in half and glue to the lapbook to open it. Then, I give them a little demographics slip they’ll glue onto the front of their lapbook as well. They’ll write their grade, age, teacher, school, and year. On the opposite lapbook flap, they’ll glue down the selfie box I give them where they can illustrate how they currently look! 

Once that step is complete, I pass out the number sheet. They carefully cut out the numbers to make the current year and glue them underneath their picture. Choosing the colors of the numbers they are cutting out adds an opportunity for an individual touch!

An end of the year lapbook activity like this is helps students break down their achievements and reflect on everything they loved about the year.

Once the front of our lapbook is finished, we move on inside to reflect on some favorite “camera moments”. These camera moments are two highlights or fun memories from the school year. I give them the choice of illustrating these favorite memories or writing about them. Whichever they prefer! 

The next piece I guide my students through is the flip book. There is a version for younger students in the primary grades and a version that is perfect for older students as well! Each flap of the flipbook has a different prompt for them to fill out. Some prompts include:

  • favorite assignment from the year,
  • favorite book read,
  • favorite friend,
  • favorite special (P.E., Art, Music, Spanish, etc.), and
  • a spot for them to gather the autographs of their classmates!

Now, I personally spread out the pages throughout the week instead of trying to have my kiddos do them all at once. I have found that they put in more effort when I space them out for morning work each day for the week. 

There is another part for descriptive words that have them practicing adjectives. They take the lightbulb papers included and write down lessons they have learned. These can be academic lessons or lessons they learned about friendships or growth mindset, for example.

The finished lapbook is like a scavenger hunt of memories for the past year.  Kids and parents both love this project and it makes a great keepsake for the year.

2. Summer Coding End of the Year Elementary Activities

We spend time throughout the whole year practicing our coding skills. Overall, my kiddos really enjoy coding, but it always adds to the experience when tying the coding into a holiday or season. My summer break coding activities for elementary students are the perfect way to tie in summer fun to create that buy-in for their school work. It is a fun activity that works on important critical thinking and coding skills and the best part is – it’s differentiated!

How is this coding differentiated?

End of the year activities like this summer coding activity is a great way to tie in some summer fun into those last few weeks of school.

This particular activity comes in three different levels. The first level has a path that is already set for your students to follow. Then they choose where to place the summer pieces along the path. Four different moves need to be included in order to write the code.

In the next level, I have students who can easily follow directions to use this version. They are given the task of collecting pieces to help guide the direction of their path. For them to reach the sandcastle, they need to include five different moves before the end of the path.

The last level has students create their own code and apply coding strategies independently. Their challenge is to create their code, collect the needed items along the way, and avoid the traps! To top it all off, they will include six different moves along their path. 

I use these three levels in a couple of different ways. If I want to differentiate my class, I will split them into circle or beginning-level, triangle or on-level, and star or above-level groups. Other times, I have used them more like tiers. They start with the beginning level and, once they have passed that, they move to the on-level map. This activity is flexible to meet the needs of your classroom! Plus, there’s even a coding game where it introduces how to write and draw code, which is a great way to review at the end of the year! My past and current students have had so much fun playing this game that I know that my future students will too.

3. Time to Celebrate with These End of the Year Certificates

I look forward to celebrating my students all year with these end of the year certificates! Once spring break hits, I start preparing to celebrate their accomplishments and plan a party for them. This is easily in my top three on my list of end of the year activities! We take an afternoon (about an hour at the end of the day) during the last week of school and showcase them and their hard work. It’s the perfect time for a little celebration of all their work during the past school year.

Celebrate each of your unique students with these end of the year awards and certificates.

I have parents send in safe snacks for us to munch on. I make a playlist to have a celebration dance party. Then, we have a rewards ceremony to shout out each student for the quality that they showcased the most this year! 

Maybe you have a student who was on top of their game when it came to homework. Another student might have demonstrated cooperative behavior in all types of situations. Or yet another student may have shown caring leadership skills. Another reward could go to someone who is always caring through random acts of kindness. The way their eyes light up and smiles start breaking out when their name is called is a highlight of the year. They truly feel like a valued part of our classroom community while being celebrated! 

Make sure to read How to Have the Best End of the Year Awards Ceremony to learn more about how I celebrate my kiddos!

4. Mystery Math for End of the Year Elementary Activities

Another end of the year activity that has my kiddos buzzing with excitement is The End of the Year Math Crack the Code. Do your students love escape rooms? If so, they are going to love this activity!

Let me set the scene for you! Your school is gearing up for end of the year bash, and they’ve brought in a special guest to crank up the festivities. What’s the catch? The identity of this VIP is hidden in mystery, and the rumors are swirling!  This math mystery is one of my favorite ways to review a variety of math skills at the end of the year.

Use these mystery math worksheets in your end of the year activities for fun math skills practice your students will really get into.

Once I have set the scene for my kiddos, they get ready to solve the mystery with their math skills. I can rest easy knowing my students will be invested while practicing their fractions, money, shapes, and telling time. As they go through each activity, they’ll discover a new clue to help them eliminate the guests until they find the culprit! 

I love partnering my students up for this activity. As we know at the end of the year, any independent task feels much more exciting when it becomes a partner task. Listening to their excited voices, talking through their reasoning, and being excited with them when they solve the mystery correctly is so rewarding! There is no better way to review all of the math skills they learned than with a math mystery!

5. Creating Keepsakes with End of the Year Elementary Activities

As the year comes to a close, I always feel like I am extra sentimental. All the minor inconveniences of this time of year take the backseat for the moment. I want to soak up the last few months with my kiddos. While teaching second grade, I have learned how important that particular grade can be. It’s the last year of primary grades, as they’ll be beginning third grade and starting upper elementary. I want them to be able to look back and remember the memories of their second-grade year! 

The End of the Year Memory Book for 2nd Grade is a must-do activity with my students. It’s so easy to print and assemble, and they always turn out as a well-loved keepsake. They also make a great end-of-the-year interactive bulletin board. 

This keepsake memory book is the perfect addition to your end of the year activities and will surely be treasured by parents for years to come.

The first tab is called “My Life as a 2nd Grader”, where they write down their age and height. Then they use descriptive words they’ve learned during the year to describe themselves. They’ll record a talent they had or discovered, and then draw a selfie! 

On the next tab, I have my students reflect and describe the biggest accomplishment they remember the most. To help them get started, I ask them some questions to think about! Did they master a tricky math problem? Did they complete a writing piece in which they used capitalization, correct punctuation, and wrote neatly?

The third tab is probably one of my favorite pages for them to work on. It’s called “Classroom Stats”, where they record how many classmates they have, how many boys, and how many girls. They write down who they think is the funniest and who they think is the hardest worker. Then they illustrate you, the teacher! I love their drawings, and they usually give me a good laugh!

After stats comes the tab for “What I Learned”. They are tasked with writing down a skill or topic they learned for all the subject areas. Subject areas include social studies, math, science, and more. In the last line, they actually write down something they learned about themselves. This one trips them up sometimes, but is still so important for them to see that learning doesn’t always come from a subject area! 

With fun pages like these, your students will be able to remember all of the fun activities they did during the school year and is a great addition to your list of end of the year activities.

On the “Favorites” tab, they get a chance to record all of their favorite things! Some writing prompts include their favorite color, hobby, recess activity, lunch, and more! Their interests and favorites change so often that this is a fun way for them in the future to look back and see what their favorites were in second grade. It’s their own version of the Memories feature on our picture app! 

After the Favorites tab, there is the “My Top Ten Memories” tab. Before I let them start on their list, we usually do a brain dump on the board as a whole class. I bring them together to the carpet area in front of our board, and I ask them to share memories from their year. Memories could be from a real or virtual field trip, assemblies at school, a fun project, a guest speaker, and more! I write their ideas on the board to help their minds start sifting through their files. They return to their seats to write down their top ten from 10 down to 1 being the top favorite memory. 

The very last page is a fan favorite amongst my students! It is a well-loved and filled-out autograph page. They have a blast rushing to each other to write messages and get each other’s autographs. Talk about a keepsake! 

Wrapping Up with End of the Year Elementary Activities

Wrap up your year with these amazing end of the year activities your students will love.

As the end of the school year approaches, whether you’re teaching 2nd grade, 3rd grade, middle school, or even high school, you can feel like you are on a survival mission. There’s worry there isn’t enough time to get into a specific topic or more special events before next year’s students arrive.

These thrilling end of the year activities for elementary students help the lesson plans become easier, and the days go by quickly. They spark fun memories all while practicing skills from the year. As my students dive into their lapbooks, STEM challenges through coding, spreading kindness with certificates, and more, the atmosphere of our classroom transforms into a positive space for learning. Fidgeting fades, distractions disappear, and those wandering minds find purpose in their partners or small groups.

As we wrap up another school year, we can see the finish line with summer vacation on the other side where we can recharge for the next school year. These fun activities celebrate the learning, growth, and bonds we’ve created with our kiddos. The classroom will be filled with laughter, curiosity, and the satisfaction of a school year well spent.

I also like to send my students off with a small gift – a token of my appreciation for allowing me to get to know them that year. Obviously, it’s not big, but bubbles, sunglasses, ANYTHING that students can use so when they see it, they remember all the fun times we had! Here are some fun gift tags that you can attach to some of these gifts!

Here’s to finding a great activity or two, wrapping up the year on a high note, and creating memories that will linger in our hearts and the hearts of our students for years to come!

Save for Later

Remember to save this blog post to your favorite teacher Pinterest board when you are planning end-of-year activities for your lessons!

Looking for fun and meaningful end of the year activities for your elementary students? These 5 end of the year activities will help students celebrate all of their achievements throughout the school year, and even get in some extra fun skills practice at the same time. Celebrate your kiddos with these exciting activities perfect for those last few weeks before summer break. #elementaryisland #endoftheyearactivitiesforelementarystudents #endoftheyearactivities #elementarymemorybooks #summeractivities


Grab 4 weeks of my Challenge Phonics today for FREE!

Are you looking for a way to challenge your  high-flying students during your phonics time or add center work to your upper grades?