Two and half weeks ago, during the last week of school, we invited our families one last time to our classroom. (We tried to invite them once a month and managed six out of the ten months. Not the best year I’ve done when it comes to this.) For our June event we invited families in the evening. (We try to vary the times in order to accommodate as many families’ schedules as possible.) I ordered fourteen pizzas to feed us all and families brought juice boxes and desserts.
It was, I think, the best family event I’ve ever done. The goal was to share our writing with families and we did that. However, I realized a few weeks before the event that I had a lot of photos to give families. Throughout the year I’ve been ordering 100 photos every month because Snapfish offered me a deal if I downloaded their app. For a year I would get 100 photos each month for the cost of shipping. I’ve been ordering photos and passing them on to families. But I hadn’t done so in a while so I had a lot of photos piled up.
So I ordered some photo corners. When kids and families arrived I gave them their pile of photos, some card stock, and lots of photo corners. Together they created scrapbook pages to keep.
I really wasn’t sure how this would go. I ordered two boxes of photo corners, figuring I’d save whatever we didn’t use for a future project. I set it up for the pizza to arrive about half an hour after families were due. If they didn’t get into creating their scrapbook pages, plan B was that they could share their writing first thing.
I needn’t have worried. Kids kept asking for more photo corners. At the end of the evening I might have had 25 photo corners left. Looking back at the pictures later I am convinced this was brilliant (if brilliant by chance). Siblings worked with my students. Parents got involved. Our classroom was full and lots of stories were being shared from our year together. I now know I’m going to have to keep ordering photos and hosting an event like this every year.
Such focus. Such collaboration. Such an amazing way to end our year together.