How do you make it to the end of the year, keep your students engaged, and review key math skills you’ve worked on all year? I have the ULTIMATE, fun end of the year activities for elementary students that they are going to love!
The last few weeks of school are always an exciting time for everyone. We all start dreaming about summer break, but there’s just one problem… school isn’t over yet!
How do you balance reviewing everything you’ve learned during the entire year in only a few weeks? How do you keep students engaged when all they want to do is finish up the school year?
After trying different end of the year activities throughout the years, I want to share my favorite one that keeps students focused, having fun, and reviews all the important math skills they’ve learned.
Host a Mystery for a Fun End of Year Activity
Have you ever tried an escape room? Let’s recreate that type of exciting adventure, but make it doable for first graders and second graders! This math mystery will let your students have all of the fun without any of the planning for you!
Setting Up End of the Year Activities
In this mystery, students will read a letter from Ms. Martin, a teacher. She is throwing an end of the year classroom party, but she hid the supplies from her students! She wants to send them on a hunt to find them!
To find the location of the party supplies, students will complete 6 math challenges involving addition, subtraction, place value, time, money, and word problems, all while engaged in solving a mystery! As students complete each challenge, they earn clues to help them solve the mystery!
Complete Over the Course of a Week
I suggest using this end of the year challenge over the course of one week. This will give your students Monday through Thursday to complete all six challenges (one to two per day during your math time). On Friday, students can sift through the clues & decode the secret message to solve the mystery!
If you have time or want to plan an extra engaging day, you could also make an entire morning and/or afternoon of the whole thing and do it all at once!
A Win for Teachers and Students
My favorite thing about this challenge is watching my students get so into solving the mystery. Since each activity gives them a clue to solve the mystery, they get tangible results for finishing. This really helps fight the end of year slump!
But don’t just take my word for it. Here is what teachers have to say:
This was a big hit in my classroom! I was able to use it during math small group work. Students were engaged and worked in mixed-ability groups. I definitely recommend!– Jodi
Want to use this resource in your classroom? Just click here!
Try a Math Mystery for Free
Want to try a math mystery for FREE? Click here to get The Mail Mix Up Math Mystery!
Looking for more end of year activities? Pair this math mystery with these resources:
- May Math Printables
- End of Year Countdown Activities (learn more about how I use them here)