May 28, 2014 13:34 Age: 4 yrs

How to Keep Your Students Engaged Through the End of the School Year: Tips from an AF Principal

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Injy Carpenter is the principal at AF East New York Elementary School.

During the last month of the school year, we as educators and school leaders will be competing with the warmer weather and the sweet smell of approaching vacation. That means that we not only need to keep our academic and behavior expectations high, but also intentionally plan for how we are going to keep students engaged and invested in school.

As we approach the finish line, there are many things that we can do to make school an exciting place that keeps students engaged even as summer beckons: 


  • Bring the drama when reading aloud to students. Use character voices and invoke your inner actor or actress.
  • Turn a page or two of the book that you’re reading into theater and call up a group of students to do a dramatic reading of a scene for the class. Bring a prop to hook students into your lesson.
  • Make science lessons come alive for students with hands-on experiments.
  • Pose a juicy question to your class and open the floor for students to engage in thoughtful debate and discussion.
  • Use rigorous stations so that kids can rotate and get an opportunity to work with different partners.
  • Infuse moments of pure joy into the day:
    • Bring your whole self to the lesson and share stories and artifacts with your class.
    • Let the kids bring in their favorite jokes to share at the end of the day.
    • End breakfast with a show-and-tell rotation.
    • Have a dance contest during snack.


With intentional planning, we can ensure that students feel that class is the most desirable place to be!    

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