I guest blogged about this last year, but wanted to revisit it this year as well as give you an updated cover for the 2012-2013 school year.
Each student uses the freebie sheet to make their own folder by folding it back and stapling it down the sides. They fill their name in on the line and then grab 1/4 sheets of paper (I use many different colors to make it fun), grabbing as many sheets as there are kids in class.
Depending on the age of your students (I have done this in 3rd and in 5th), you will need to allot a nice chunk of time and may need to break this down into smaller chunks, depending on their stamina. I usually do this with some nice, relaxing music in the background and encourage them to take the time they need so that each student gets a great note.
Everyone will then write a sentence or two (a compliment, a memory, why it was nice having them in class) to each person in the class and sign their name. They will then slip the paper into the student’s Smile File and repeat the process around the room.
Helpful Teacher Tips: Before we begin, I make a chart about some nice notes we could write and leave that posted for those students who may have trouble thinking of specifics for each student. I will also write my Smile Files for each student in advance and put them in the envelopes lickety-split so I can hang out near my kiddos who need a bit more support with writing.
After the students are all done, you can choose to have them read them in class, or to save them for when they get home-- it's such a special and simple way to celebrate your classroom community and end the year in a bucket filling way :)
To get this year's updated freebie, head over to Google Docs HERE and enjoy!
Flip-Flap Keepsake BooksOne new activity I can't wait to try out this year is Anna's (from Simply Skilled in Second) Flip-Flap Keepsake Books:
I stocked up on several of her Flip-Flap Books during the Teacher Appreciation Sale and can't wait to try this one out (this set also comes with a First Day of Third Grade version-- woo hoo!!)! It is such a fun way to reflect on the year and the finished product looks incredible! Be sure to check my Instagram for how these come along this week :)
What are you doing to wrap up the end of the year? Can you believe it's almost done?!