End-of-term activities for secondary school teachers

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Concentration levels start to flag in the run-up to Christmas and it can be hard to keep students focused. We’ve come up with some end-of-term activities that will keep them engaged and inspired during the last few weeks of term.

A virtual visit to a theatre, some career ideas, a charity collection and some new year's resolution planning. Here are six fun and impactful end-of-term activities for secondary schools to make the last few lessons ones to remember. All the ideas can be adapted for different age ranges.
Mira in storyworld series Becoming Me
Mira in storyworld series Becoming Me

1 Find out what happens backstage at the Finnish Opera house in a Lyfta live lesson

The show must go on! Take your children on a trip to the theatre this Christmas with our Lyfta live lesson. In these live lessons (taking place on 14th and 15th December) students will take a trip to the Finnish Opera House and explore the main stage, the backstage area, the orchestra pit, the workshops and the dance studios.
Secrets of the Opera is a series of eight storyworlds that share stories from the Finnish Opera and Ballet. By exploring interactive 360° spaces the children can visit the different parts of the theatre and meet the extraordinary people who work there.
Students can visit the Orchestra pit and listen to the instruments and watch the musicians as they practise. They can learn about the many jobs that people do at the theatre behind the scenes to make sure that a production runs smoothly. This is an excellent way for children to feel the excitement of a theatre trip without leaving the classroom.

2 Career surgery

Pedro and colleagues in storyworld We Live Among Volcanoes
Pedro and colleagues in storyworld We Live Among Volcanoes
Instead of dreaming about presents, invite students to dream about their perfect job. Students who have joined our Lyfta live lesson Secrets of the opera will have been introduced to different jobs that people working behind the scenes at the theatre do.
You may explored Marja-Leena in the Jewellery Maker's Room and seen how she designed her own job and the steps needed to get there. Students can think about how they might take steps to design their own dream jobs or just think about what kind of job they'd like.
Lyfta users will have access to a wide range of storyworlds that feature a range of exciting careers.
For those interested in exploring careers in STEM check out our Space Mission Lucy and We Live Among Volcanoes storyworlds. Students can find out what a marine biologist in America does, a beekeeper in Berlin and a fashion photographer in Nairobi.

3 Secret Santa with a difference

Andrea in her backyard in storyworld Andrea's Yard
Andrea in her backyard in storyworld Andrea's Yard
If you are considering the Secret Santa game, use this version to make it kinder to the planet. Each child bring a gift to give to another classmate, but instead of something new, they bring something they have either made themselves or that they already own and no longer want.
It could be some cookies, a picture, or a handmade decoration. Perhaps it's an item of clothing they no longer need.
Invite them to be as creative as possible and think about re-using the items that they already have.
This brings up the important topic of waste and sustainability at school. Check out our blogs on Exploring sustainability in the classroom and Zero Waste Week
Lyfta users can explore Andrea's Yard storyworld and meet Andrea from Argentina who has a backyard full of treasures she has collected from a local landfill site. Students will see Andrea create a chair from recycled items and learn about how much waste goes to landfill in the UK each year.

4 Play Globingo

The Globingo sheet
The Globingo sheet
This is a fun getting-to-know-you game that helps students understand our global connections and interconnectedness. Also known as 'Find someone who' this game is a great way for children to explore some of the ways in which we are connected to people all over the world without even realising it!
For example, children will ask their classmates questions such as 'Who has a relative living in another country?', 'Who can speak two or more languages?'Once they have completed all the questions they can shout 'Globingo!'
Download the Globingo sheet here and get started.

5 New Year resolution setting

We all try to make some and usually we break them pretty quickly but it's still good practice to set out some good intentions for the new year.
Ask students to write down some New Year resolutions for 2023. Perhaps ask them to think of resolutions that will help them:
  • Look after themselves better (such as trying a new sport, eating more fruit, switching off devices for a day)
  • Look after other people better (doing something for an elderly relative, raising money for charity)
  • Look after the planet better (buying fewer clothes, using less plastic, eating less meat, turning off gadgets to save electricity)

6 Charity begins at school

The festive season is a time to think about those less well-off than us and it's important to remind students of this. Christmas will be an expensive and difficult time for many families this year.
Ask children to think about how they might be able to help those in need. Perhaps they could do some research into local children's charities.
They could organise a collection and bring in unwanted toys or clothes for donation.
Ask them to think about how the holidays might be for those who are hard up and unable to spend a lot on gifts and food.
Showing compassion for others can have a very positive effect on mental health and it's an important thing for children to learn, especially at this time of year.
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