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School's Ending. It's Sadly Obvious.

School is almost over.  I don't even have to look at the calendar or the length of the days (18 hours of Florida skin-wrinkling, cancer-causing daylight) to know.  I just listen to my daughter.

ME: What did you do in school today?

HER:  Nothing.  (An atypical response for my chatterbox)

Apparently nothing is going on in the classroom and few students are even there.  I even hear rumor of some half-days coming up.

What's up with this Florida School system?  For so long complaints, complaints, complaints about students not having enough classroom time, test prep time or time for creative units.  Now here you have some students, on the clock, to teach, teach, teach to.  Actually this is a great time for teachers to teach some things that kids would be interested in learning.  

Schools, think of the end of the year like a movie trailer for the next school year.  Like a movie trailer, cram all the rewards of learning into this last week.  Wow! Look all the things you learned can be put to fun use!  The kids won't know that learning will be boring again until next year, but they'll look forward to it all summer.  

How about some math games.  Not on the computer.  I'm working from a kindergarten parent perspective so, other parents, bear with me and adapt the thinking to your grade level.  

With the addition they learned this year.  How about a game of store? We play this at home using money and toys around the house.  Sometimes I am the store person and sometimes she but we always play with prices and money (fake works just fine.)  Too complicated?  How about Bingo for reinforcing those double digit numbers.  Or sight words. Again, not on the computer.  The fun is yelling "Bingo!"

How about a mini-classroom spelling bee.  Not on the computer. Lets see how many of those spelling words made it to long-term memory.  

Make stories with words written on strips of paper.  Play Mad-Libs in a class setting.  Do another science experiment or two. 

Teachers, cram in a passion of yours.  Native America, insects, foreign countries, poetry, rain forests, vacation ideas. I'm still up for doing homework if you're up to photocopying those take home sheets. Have shoebox, will diorama.  

If nothing else, school, teach the students that learning isn't something that comes to a stop on the last day or school.  Or, rather, two weeks before the last day of school. School should end with a push to encourage summer learning, not a plummet.  

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