View Full Version : Weekly Poll: How do you celebrate finishing your end of the school year or grade?

03-30-2011, 05:23 AM
How do you celebrate finishing your end of the school year or grade?
This weekly poll was inspired by BusyGoddess;)

When I came across this thread in the forum it got me thinking... I know you are scared right?
But seriously, being a year round homeschooling family we don’t really take much of a break before jumping into the next school/grade’s year work. Like my youngest, who is 3rd grade has
went through all the 3rd grade materials and so we just naturally started on 4th grade. I said” Great Job, let’s see what is next” but no end of the grade party, special day field trip, “Just come on let’s get going again!” SO everyone, let us know what you do for your kids when they complete a grade or get finished with a really intense subject/material. And if you pick Other please tell us what you do!

SueEllen Grieves-Curl
03-30-2011, 05:36 AM
I keep track of the days that my girls do work, I have a folder for each of them and fill it with all of their stuff. And we keep a daily roll and this is based on the days that we meet. And we go by 180 day school year. So at the end of that school year we take a break and move on. If we are still in middle of a unit we finish that unit out though as long as we have no less than 180 days per school year.

03-30-2011, 08:34 AM
We don't do any real celebration. We probably do not jump right in with the next level because we have to wait for it, so there is a break.
All of our units end with a project, so there is a natural conclusion.
No party or special event though.

03-30-2011, 11:02 AM
I picked "other" simply because we've only had one end of school year so far. We took dd out to eat at her choice of restaurant and presented her with a K certificate. We also did graduation pictures to send out to people, that was fun. I don't know what we'll do this year, it depends when we end. We started in June last year but switched curriculum in January, so we have several months left.

03-30-2011, 11:07 AM
Last year we went to "our" island with co-op and signed yearbooks that we had made. And then the kids climbed down into the fountains and found a lot of slugs which they made up a musical about. Maybe we'll do that again. :D

03-30-2011, 11:16 AM
We didn't do anything last year, but this is the first year that DS has indicated that rituals are really important to him. I'm so conflicted over what "school" is for us; my heart leans unschooly and interest led, yet we actually follow a lot of curriculum and a pretty consistent schedule. So if we celebrate the "end of the school year" that feels to me like we're giving up formal learning for the summer, and I don't want him to see it that way. I'm probably over thinking it, as usual. He could no more not learn than he could not breathe so I guess I'd better think up something fun. I think I'll suggest something to the homeschool group, maybe we can have a play day at the beach.

03-30-2011, 11:18 AM
I sometimes print up certificates to signify the end of a book or something, but that's about it. I do bigger celebrations for milestones in between, like learning all the addition facts or whatever.

03-30-2011, 11:21 AM
We take the boys to the zoo or science museum, out for lunch and have a nice day. Their Great Grandma sends them a card every year congrats'ing them on moving to the next year and she includes a $1 bill.

03-30-2011, 11:51 AM
This is our first year so we haven't done anything yet. I like seeing what other people have done, gives me ideas. We will be schooling some through the summer but still it would be fun to mark the end of our first year as homeschooers.

03-30-2011, 11:52 AM
We do nothing. We used to, way back when we started (9 years ago), but as ds got older, it just wasn't that big of a deal anymore. We do, however, have a big ol' celebration on the first day of the public school year. We head out to breakfast, hit Powell's book store (a WHOLE city block of books!) and load up on any cool thing we can find, go see a movie and then anywhere else ds wants to go.

03-30-2011, 12:29 PM
Cool, I inspired a poll!

Ok, we take a break. Usually it's a month. This year, it's only a week for Jay. Dea isn't done for the year, yet. I pretty much plan on having her start at the beginning of whatever month comes after she finishes (i.s. if she finishes mid-April, she'll start the first Monday in May).

During our break, I usually finalize the detailed plans for the following year. We also box up all their finished work and collect all their projects from around the house. They choose what, if any, projects they want left out for display or to keep in their rooms, and the rest get boxed up & put away for storage. This is actually pretty fun, since we get to look back over the whole school year & see the progress they made. We also get the materials for the next year put away where our current year materials belong. This helps us check that we have everything we need & know where it all is. Plus, we tend to get really excited about the coming year while we look through all the fun stuff we have planned.

Our breaks are also pretty unschooly. We understand that learning never stops. However, our school year is for focusing on the things that are required, allowing for following interests after their required work is done for the day. Breaks can be devoted to their interests. So, they tend to spend their breaks researching things, doing Scinece kits (I always get extra ones I don't plan to use for school, so they have some for fun on breaks), lots of reading, investigating, etc.

Miguels mommy
03-30-2011, 01:35 PM
We go out to lunch on testing/portfolio day but he finishes subjects at different times so he just moves on to the next level.

03-31-2011, 09:58 AM
I had to choose other because we haven't been homeschooling long enough to have a set idea of how we end the year. I'm thinking of trying to do year round, and if there is any gap in between our current curriculum ending and the next one getting her I want to fill it with projects, workbooks, and science kits. Last year we finished up right before we went on vacation, so I kind of counted that as our end of Pre-K celebration. This year I don't plan on a huge break, but we may go to the park, or have a picnic or something.

03-31-2011, 11:34 AM
Since this is the first year (or half year really) we've HS'd I figure I should mark it somehow. Especially since on the last day of PS it was our custom to pick up DD early and head off to the beach for the afternoon.

We're going to Baltimore overnight (quick fly in, see a few things and then fly out the next evening). I don't think next year will necessarily be as extravagant but I'm sure we'll do something, even if it's more local. The Baltimore trip comes right in the middle of our planned 2 week break then we have only about 15 more instruction days per state rules so it's a vacation just before summer vacation!! Though we're going to to 2 days worth of school each week so we don't get lazy for the fall and to also get a jump start so we can take time off in Sept/October before you're trapped inside again by the weather!

03-31-2011, 11:38 AM
Cool, I inspired a poll!

YES YOU DID:) thanks!

03-31-2011, 03:01 PM
I picked other since this is our first year and I am considering doing year round and not 'competing' with PS, just going at our own pace and getting done what we get done. Wish me luck on that, who knows how I feel in 2 months!

03-31-2011, 03:36 PM
We just move on. The don't ever seem to finish all subjects at the same time and it seems silly to make them wait until they've finished all of them before moving on. It makes it difficult to have a big end of the grade celebration so I typically acknowledge when they finish a subject for that grade.

03-31-2011, 09:28 PM
We send the kid to summer camp. That makes a pretty distinct transition, even with those few wishy-washy weeks in August. I usually spend those on a specific topic (for example, this past August was all about citation and avoiding plagiarism), then we get started with a new academic year and grade in September.

Stella M
03-31-2011, 09:57 PM
Nothing...we don't do grades and the end of our academic year is at Christmas time, so we just finish up and move right on to opening presents :) We have sometimes celebrated a not-back-to-school day by going away when school goes back.

04-05-2011, 12:17 PM
We don't differentiate. DD does have one program that ends for the summer and we signed her up for next year, so there is a gap there. I think they will do a year-end celebration including graduations to the next level; it's a nature program and each level is 3 years. DD is finishing up her first year at the first level. But we don't do anything special.

We'll just fill do summer with friends, journeys and the same stuff we do now, but hopefully add in some camping when the weather is better and DD might try out karate and a day camp just for fun.

We're more likely to celebrate not going back to school, but really only if one of the homeschool groups does something special and we feel like coming along.

04-05-2011, 10:03 PM
We take some time off - I think I need it more than they do!! We're doing year-round schooling, but we still have 6 weeks off between "years." I don't tell them they are in a particular grade, but since it comes up all the time outside of our home, they definitely know what grade they would be in if they went to school. And I usually do something special and fun to celebrate each "quarter" so that we all have something to look forward to, and that includes the last quarter of the year (though I have no idea what it'll be yet). For example, at the end of the first quarter we took Friday off and went to see the new Harry Potter. Simple but fun, and not something we typically do so the girls were very excited.