Wrapping It up With KookyKinder


With just two days left in school, I want to keep my class engaged and learning. We talk about goals and plans all year long and summer time shouldn't be different. I created this fun activity to see what my kiddos have "planned" for the summer.


Grab the FREEBIE here.

Ending the Year With a Fun Class Activity

One of the great things about the end of the year is seeing the friendships that have formed in your class! I love to end the year with this fun activity called "Who Am I?" It is a great way for the class to see how much they have learned about each other over the year.

Each student fills out the questions and draws a picture of themselves, without putting their name on the paper. When they are done, you gather them up, and number them. Then you can play a game to see who knows their classmates best! Each student numbers their paper with however many students are participating. Then you can hold up a paper for the class to see and read the answers. Students write down who they think it is. Go through the rest of the papers until you are done. Then you can go back through and let students tell which one was theirs as everyone checks their answers!

You can get this activity for FREE here!


Ending the Year in Style in Kindergarten!

Hey friends! Are you out of school yet? I truly hope you are! My last workday was Tuesday. My last day with kiddos was last Friday. No matter how many days you have left, I hope you are wrapping it up easy and breezy. Here's a few ways I ended the year in the past!

Just from my personal experience, I've ALWAYS given my students something at the end of each year. With that in mind, I just like to send them off for the summer with some goodies AND memories to remember the year by. This year, they got nice little baggies filled with our ABC Chit Chat DVD, Kindergarten slideshow DVD, Graduation certificate, awards, and this year they received the book Click, Clack Moo - Cows That Type with a note inside. Also in the bags, they each got a personalized cup that I found a Dollar Tree! I seriously love these little cups. Super cute and EASY way to personalize something. I love my name on things and think it's a great way to send gifts home to your kids. Under the bags, is their individualized Keeping Up With Kindergarten summer review pack.

Wrap things up in a fun and exciting way by posting a countdown. Last year, I made this countdown on my door and the entire school was excited (and made sure to remind me) as each day was one day less. It definitely amped up the excitement!

I always make sure to have a Ms. Brown and me picture in our dvds. I easily take over 1000 pictures each year and this is one of my FAVORITES! I usually have so many pictures of them and none of me. They will always have the memory of me through pictures and all the fun that we shared in their year with me. 

Packing up at the end of the year is EXTREMELY easy for me! I have tons of crate seats in my room that are more for storage than actual seating. I added these labels to each of the crates so I can easily tell what's inside throughout the year. I have crates for each month where I store my centers, larger items that don't fit in tubs such as pails for centers games and so on. I also have crates with just supplies and special occasion things that we do during the year. For example, I have all of my Q and U wedding decorations in a crate. This makes it so easy when it's time to pack up. I just take each crate and stack them on top of each other either in my restroom or on the counter. Last year, the counter worked well. This year, I stacked them neatly inside my restroom. When it's time to start getting BTS ready at the end of July (probably sooner knowing me), I can easily just pull out the beginning of the year crates that are label.

Do any of you own these plastic shelves? It makes storing away for the summer SO easy! I can place things on the bottom as well as the top and get twice the space when I need to get everything off the floor. Easy peasy, right?

Have a GREAT summer!

Wrapping it up with Mrs. Grooms' Room!

Hey everyone!  I can't tell you how excited I am to see summer!!!  It has been a year!  Phew!  I always say the beginning and the end are the crazy parts of the school year, and I try to stay several steps ahead but things seem to catch up FAST!

I LOVE to wrap the end of the year with a fun unit like pirates.  It's not one that we usually learn about but it's fun, interesting, and there are so many things you can do with pirates.  

However, our last three days are always half days and the last day is the perfect day to end with our WIN IT IN A MINUTE games!  

(FYI...Reagan Tunstall over at Tunstall Tidbits has a great blog post on how she does a Minute to Win It in the classroom.  I love her awesome ideas!!  
So FUN!!!)

Since we only have half of a day and some of our day is dedicated to lunch, recess, and related arts, we only have about an hour for games.  

I set up our games as centers the day before which helps to save on time.  I have designated areas for each game complete with supplies, signs, and directions.  I explain my rules the morning of the games, and I call my students in pairs to play against each other.  They are not allowed to choose.  
(It's the law of the name sticks.) 

Next, the winners play each other, and we have the champion of that game.  It's CUH-RAZY fun!  Don't worry... you might think it can get loud but we do discuss rules and behaviors in the beginning of the day.  My students who have already taken a turn LOVE to play each other again in an previously played game while they are waiting for the others to WIN IT IN A MINUTE!  Sooo cute!    :)

Here are a couple of games that I use in our little WIN IT IN A MINUTE set.  

I wish I had my WIN IT IN A MINUTE photos to show you but I lost them when my hard drive went to techno heaven and I am still heartbroken over that passing.  :(   New photos this year!!!  

I do want to show you the silicone mitts I am using.  I bought my silicone mitts at the Dollar Tree.  The mitts are so awkward that my students are using one for each hand.  SO funny!!!    I am putting an assortment of objects together like pennies, blocks, pencils, crayons, erasers,  and plastic figurines for them to pick up.  They can only pick items up like pinchers  They are not allowed to scoop.  
Whoever picks up more objects WINS!  

This game is so simple.  It reminds me of the carry an egg in a spoon game but not.  No eggs!  Just beans.  Lima beans may work best for the littles and kidney beans may work better for the older kids.  

BTW...I actually found (in our grocery's clearance section) CHOPSTICKS!!!
You can find them at Amazon for under stix bucks...I mean six bucks.  I really said stix in my head...LOL.  (I do need summer.)  
Just click on the picture below. 

Or you could use the big tweezers from the Dollar Tree!  SO FUN!  

It takes a lot of hand-eye coordination and focus to carry those little beans! 

I am allowing my students to use our word wall words posted on the wall.  Hey...they are writing, right?  :)  I am going to highly encourage them to use their big ol' brains because it's faster to write words they have learned. 

An oldie but goodie, and prep is so easy!  
(This is always my goal at the end of the year...not a lot of prep and easy to put away.)

Want to play WIN IT IN A MINUTE? 

You can find all of these activites in my teeny-tiny gift to you...my WIN IT IN A MINUTE set!  Just click on the picture below to download it from my TPT store.  

Hoping YOU have a wonderful End of the Year!!!  
I am so excited for teachers everywhere!!!  

Tell us how many days you have left in the comments below!!!  

NINE FOR ME!!!  :)

Ending the Year in Style with a Tip and some OFISHAL treats!

Happy Friday, friends!  It's Ashley, here from Schroeder Shenanigans in 2nd, and I'm here today to share a quick tip with you about getting your classroom "summer ready" but at the same time prepping for a quick jump start to your classroom prep for back to school!! :) (Please don't hate me for using the B*** t* S***** words haha :) )

In the district that I teach in, we have to pull everything off of our walls, cover up all bulletin boards, take things down from the ceilings, etc... and let's face it - it comes down a LOT faster and a LOT easier than it goes up.  When I think about the monthsssss that I put into prepping my classroom for the first day of school, I always try to figure out SOME way to do it better...to do it FASTER than previous years.  It still always takes me forever, BUT I wanted to share a couple of things with you about what I do that HELP me get my classroom ready when I head back to school.

By the time April and May roll around, my "next year" gears start turning and I start collecting ideas, goodies, organizing tools for the new year.   I collect them/create them/buy them semi-sporadically, and I want to make sure that I have it all ready to grab and go for the following year, so I put them ALL in a large box and label it "Back to School Jump Start!".  Then, when I head back in to start setting things up for back to school, that's my go-to box to start with!

Also, as I tear down things that I keep up all year long and that I know will be going right back up on the walls the following year, I tuck it all in one basket/box too.  It just makes it so simply organized and ready to be at my finger tips when I head back in after the gloriousness of summer! Here is a little snap shot of my "Back to School Jump Start" boxes that I have officially started! :)

This one has a few of my all year long posters - fire drill, inspirational quotes, etc - AND my student name tags for next year.  I've also tucked in some new organizing teacher trays that will be making their debut next year!

The lunch count sign and labels are down and tucked away for the year, too, including some classroom labels, and Mrs. Schroeder letters for my classroom door that I now will have ready to grab and go in August! :)

I'm all about a system, and this one is easy, FREE, and SUCH a time saver when you head back to school!! It makes the back to school craziness go so much smoother!

Speaking of the NEW year . . . . I can't believe my 2nd graders are JUST about ready to head upstairs to be THIRD GRADERS?!?! WHAT?!?!? #gasp #ihopeididenoughtopreparethem  Do you ever hit that OMG point at the end of the school year and hope that you did enough?! Our DRAs went SUPER well, and their progress in math and writing blew me AWAY, but I stilllllll have fingers crossed that my kiddos can find it in themselves to keep growing up into 3rd graders over the summer who make good choices next year! :) :) #hereshoping 

Ready or not, 3rd grade, HERE THEY COME!! 

ANNNNNYWAY.... It's official in just 3 more school days from now.... they will OFISHALLY be 3rd graders...

and I will be attaching this little tag to some goldfish for them as an end of the year treat as they move on to 3rd grade!  You can check the tags out in my store HERE or by clicking the image above! 

Hope that the end of your school years are smooth!! :)

Tons of End of Year Ideas!

I can just taste it...it's almost here...and for some of you a lot faster than it is for me. The end of the year is still some time away weeks wise, (students go till June 26th), but still...time is FLYING and I know it will be over before I know it. 

The end of the year is a trying time as well. Kids love to go bananas and we go bananas over the kids! I think it's survival of the fittest at this time of year.

I'm here to share with you some end of the year ideas that I've done versions of in the past, and plan on implementing this year as well. 


If you do a money management system, or even if you don't and give students some sort of currency (tickets..etc.), this will be just a bucket of fun!

I like to try to put much of my left over treasure box items up for auction. Basically, students have saved money that they haven't used for other things...some have more, some have less. I lay out all the items that are going to be bid on. We go over the rules of a silent auction and students can either raise their hands or hold up an object such as a Popsicle stick when they want to bid on something.

I'll describe all the items before I begin so students can be aware of what there is and if they would like to wait out for something. Then I start with random items and depending on the quality of the item, I start the bid. For small items, it will be something like 25 cents and then go up, and prices vary for others. I usually have multiples of smaller items so I say like, "5 kids can this item." 

Then it is bidding time. I keep on increasing the price until the last kid (or kids if there is more than one of the item), standing gets it. Then we move on to other items. Some kids love to get a bunch of little things. Some kids hold on to their money for the bigger items. But I always tell them they are taking a risk holding out as well because they might not get it. Sometimes what they want gets bid on by a higher bidder, and so it doesn't go to them, so then they just bid on other things. Basically, I make sure that everyone gets something. 

End of Year Student Compliments

love using my own kids as test subjects :)
I learned this when I was student teaching 8 years ago. I put a picture of each student in the middle of a piece of paper that has spaces to write going all around the picture. The number of spaces depends on how many students there are. 
Then, we arrange our desks so that it is easy to pass the paper to the student next to them and that the rotation can be nice and circular without students getting confused as to who gets the paper next. I give each student a person to start with (not themselves), and they write one kind or nice thing about the person in the picture. They write their name after their sentence. Different color pens look good. Then we all rotate the papers at the same time. By the end, students will have written a compliment for each other student in the class and I will make sure I leave a space for my compliment as well. 
This serves as a beautiful keepsake that students can treasure forever. 

I am attaching a link to the PDF file that has the template - it will have the place in the middle for the picture and the title. You will need to add in the bubbles to write in according to the number students in your class. Enjoy!

Writing Activity

Here is a free End of Year Writing activity..."I Mustache (Moustache) You to Get Ready for (the next) Grade." I've included templates for 1-5th grades and a few mustaches to cut out and put on for a picture. It'll make a great end of year bulletin board display!


This memory book looks like a gift...hence the name. I've included a bunch of prompts for the students to draw a picture for and write about regarding something in 2nd grade. You can pick and choose which ones you want to give to the students. Then put them all together, put the cover on the top, and staple it to the gift box template. I also have a 1st grade and 3rd grade version available in the store. Click here or on the picture above to take you to the product! 

Student Awards

Sometimes it's hard to find cookie cutter awards for every single student in your class. I created this set of about 60 different versions of awards with unique characteristics so that you can find one for everyone!

You can find them HERE

I hope some of these ideas can help you as you finish up this racing year! Seriously...I so clearly remember getting prepared for the beginning, stalking teacher Instagram posts for ideas, pinning things that I would probably never look at again because I am the worst pinner organizer on the face of the planet, and just starting up a blog. And now, it is coming to the end and I hope that it goes smoothly for all of you!

Ending Your Year in Style with Student Presentations

Hi y'all!  My favorite thing to wrap up the school year with is research.  I LOVE having my kids research.  There is something so magical about kids sharing out facts that they read on their own.  It's so powerful y'all!

This is my second year to do a big bird research unit with my second graders and it's been a HUGE hit both years.  The first thing I do is stock up my library with different bird nonfiction books and the kids pick out a bird that they are interested in researching.  I also print out articles for them to read.  I was smarter this year and saved them, so it will save me a TON of time next year. 

Next, I teach them the steps of researching and then I gradually release them.  I teach them to ask questions first and then read to find the answer to their question.  We use sticky notes to collect all of our research.  We wrote the questions on the front of the sticky note and then when we found the answer, we wrote it under the sticky note.


After they have collected information about their bird, they start to draft out their own nonfiction book.  We worked on five headings for our books...
  • Appearance
  • Habitat
  • Diet
  • Adaptations
  • Interesting Facts
Here are three of my kids first page for the diet heading...

We also tie in nonfiction features.  See lots of labels!!

After we finished publishing our nonfiction books, the kids created their cover by drawing the bird's habitat on a piece of white cardstock.  The kids decided that the best covers would be if we didn't leave any white areas on the front.  I agree!  They turned out a-MAY-zing!!

To make our research super fun to present, we also made some bird masks to wear during the presentations.  It was my first time to do some directed drawing and I think they turned out great!!  I showed them how to draw the head (we just drew a rainbow arch) and then I modeled how to draw some of the different bird beaks.  They decided to cut out the eyes on their own and my peacock decided to add feathers to her mask.

The bird masks are a scarlet macaw, red tailed hawk, peacock, and toucan.

Do you want your kids to write their own nonfiction research book to wrap up your year?  You can grab the free template in my store by clicking on the cover image below.


Thanks for reading all about our bird research!