Once I knew this would be my last 2nd grade class, I decided I wanted to do something very special for these kiddos.
I always loved the idea of a time capsule so I decided to give my kids their own individual capsule to open when they graduate from high school.
First, I asked my pod teacher, our principal and their parents to write letters to our students. I might have peeked into a few letters and absolutely melted when the love and value of each of these kiddos was spelled out for me.
Next, we wrote letters to our future selves. We asked our future selves questions, predicted what we were going to be when we grew up, and even recalled favorite memories from 2nd grade. At first I had planned to help revise and edit these letters, but I quickly decided that it would be way cuter to read letters with misspelled words and only one punctuation mark [bad teacher alert? nah].
Then, we drew self portraits and completed an All About Me survey marking our favorite things as a 2nd grader.
After that, we decorated our large manila envelopes.
The envelopes were filled with a current picture of the individual student, a silly class photo and a picture of my pod partner and myself.
Finally, their letters from teachers and parents and friends were placed in their envelopes and sealed with packing tape.
My hope is that 10 years from now, a dusty envelope is pulled out of a box in a closet and each of my students get the opportunity to reconnect with their 2nd grade self, hear a word of encouragement from old teachers and principals, and be reminded of the unwavering love from their families.
And lets face it, who doesn't love an awkward picture and hilarious handwriting as a blast from the past?