Tuesday, June 4, 2013

End of the Year Feedback using First Year Letters {Tried it Tuesday}

Today was my last Tuesday of the school year! Yippie!! I still have to make it through Awards Day, Epic Field Trip, and another 1/2 day but I think I've got this! This week for Tried it Tuesday I wanted to share what we did in class today. 

I started out the year by reading First Day Jitters by Julie Danenburg. It is one of my favorites for back to school! 

Since we'd already had an introduction to Mrs. Hartwell I chose to read First Year Letters as a way to wrap up the end of the year. 

My kiddos liked getting a peek inside Mrs. Hartwell's classroom after she'd had such a rough start with the year. The illustrations in this book are great because there are all sorts of little "hidden" things to discover. 

The last page in the book is a letter from Mrs. Hartwell to her students telling them how much she'd enjoyed the year. We had a talk about how much I'd enjoyed having them as students this year, all the fun we'd had, and how they will do great in 5th grade! 

Then I asked them to write me a letter using the 2 stars and a wish method. Their letter needed to include two things we'd done that they liked and one thing they wish we'd done. 

The letters were all very sweet and were a great source of feedback for me. Through the letters I discovered that my students love the time we spend reading together at the carpet and also their independent reading time in class. 

Some wished they didn't have to read at home and several wanted to learn more details about topics we'd studied in Social Studies! Playing more games was mentioned in several letters. Having more fun at school was one of the goals in my "Next Year I Will Definitely..." post, so I guess I need to include games in the fun! 


  1. What a fun cute way to have the kids give you feedback. I will have to try this out next year.

    Hunter's Tales from Teaching

  2. What a great idea! I read "First Day Jitters" to my students at the beginning of the year, too. "First Year Letter" is new to me but definitely going on my list. Thanks for sharing.

    Foreman Teaches

  3. Great idea for them to write you feedback letters.

    Did you know she also has one called Last Day Blues? If not you may want to check it out.

    They are all fun.

    room 4 imagination

  4. I love the book "First Day Jitters" I've used that book the last 2 years. I haven't heard of "First Year Letters," I'll have to look into. I really like this idea. It's a great way to incorporate feedback on yourself and revisit a familiar read. Thanks for sharing.


  5. Loveeeee the ideas! I can't wait to use next year!

    24/7 Teacher Amy Harrod

  6. I love this idea!! I am going to see if my library has "First Year Letters" and totally steal this idea! Thanks so much for linking up:)
    Fourth Grade Flipper

  7. Very cool idea. I reall enjoy that each student picks up on very particular instances throughout the year and/or maybe just a small detail that you (we, teachers) might not have even picked up on.

    Although I did just see a photo of a paper like this and one of the student's asked if his teacher could wear more makeup. I just about died...and not they weren't writing the letter to me.

    Digital: Divide & Conquer


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