Here is how "A Letter to Next Year's Students" is broken down:
1. I have the students recall what we did on the first day of school, which included reading multiple letters written by last year's students. Their memory is always foggy, but they can usually recall the activity quickly.
2. I inform them that it is now time to write their very own letters to students who will be filling the seats in my classroom next year.
There are only a few basic rules to follow when composing their letters:
- You must be 110% HONEST in regard to the content written in the letter.
- There may be something about me (the teacher) or lesson/activity that you did not particularly enjoy throughout the year. I encourage you to include these things, but REMEMBER: You must be respectful when including these things in your letter.
- This is going to be a valuable resource for next year's students, so be sure include valuable information and insight within the letter.
- Have fun with it!
Viola! Once written and turned in, you'll have your first activity of the next school year already planned and organized....
I start each class off with the following statement on the first day of school:
"I could take the entire period to explain my personal background, classroom expectations and outline for this course..... But how would you know that I am telling the truth? YOU WOULDN'T! So instead of all of that.... I allowed my super students from last year tell you all about the year ahead of you in Room 30 - as well as things you might want to know about me and how I run this ship!"
I have created a printable packet aligned with this activity that will guide students through the rules, a brainstorming activity related to experiences throughout the year, and a template for them to compose their letter with! Check it out here: