End of the Year Last Week of School Picture Book Read Aloud


Last Week of School Read Alouds

The end of the year is always so bittersweet! You are ready for the summer, but saying goodbye to your students after a year of being together is never easy! 

I love to countdown the last few days of school with fun and memorable picture books to wish students well as they leave my classroom and begin new adventures. Make the last week of school memorable and wish your students well with these read alouds perfect for the last week of school. 

All of these books follow the same theme and message, dream big, do good in the world, and be yourself! What a wonderful way to send off the kids for summer! (The summer read alouds can be found HERE.)

Play up the idea of having a countdown the last week or two of the year with picture books by trying one of these ideas:

  • Wrap each of the books that you plan to read aloud to countdown the year with wrapping paper or plain brown paper bags and clearly label them with a large number. Unwrap the books right before reading for a little extra suspense!
  • Create a paper chain with each link including the title and author of the book you plan on reading. Each day have a different student rip off a link and read the title and author.

Be sure to grab some fun and FREE activities at the end of this post, perfect to accompany these end-of-year read alouds!

Memory Jars written by Vera Brosgol

end of year picture book activities

Memory Jars is a story that truly illustrates just how sweet good memories really are! This story follows the main character Freda as she bottles up everything she loves in jars so that she does not ever lose them, including her best friend who was moving. After almost everything in her life is in a jar, she begins to feel lonely. Freda learns that enjoying the moment and loved ones is the best way to make memories. This book is perfect to kick off a walk down memory lane with your students and remember all of the memories of the school year!

Scribble Stones written by Diane Alber

end of year projects and read alouds

Painting rocks for others is one act of kindness I love doing at home with my children and in the classroom with students. This book is the perfect way to kick off a kindness-themed rock painting end-of-year activity! Have students paint rocks for their friends and write meaningful class letters about why each student rocks! This book sends the message that all art is beautiful and that one simple act can bring happiness to others. 

What Would You Do In a Book About You? written by Jean Reidy

end of year read alouds upper elementary

Don't you just love those picture books that come full circle that you can read on the first day AND the last day of school? What Would You Do in a Book About You? is one of those books. This book encourages kids to dream big! I love the message it sends to kids that they can really do anything they dream and put their mind too, and of course reminds them to spread a little kindness along the way!

This book is perfect to read on the first day of school, when the whole school year is ahead of them, and then again on the last day of school, as you say goodbye and remind them that the whole world is ahead of them!

What Will You Be? written by Yamile Saied Mendez

End of year picture books and activities

Listen to heart and dream big! What Will You Be? follows a young girl as she thinks and dreams about what her future holds. I love the message of following your inner voice and heart to help you make choices in your life. The young girl dreams of changing the future, impacting others in positive ways, and laughing along the way. Her dreams will inspire your students to change the world, one dream at a time, all while staying true to themselves. Bonus, the illustrations by Kate Alizadeh are so colorful and eye-catching you will want to stare at each and every page!

 Happy Dreamer written by Peter H Reynolds

Happy Dreamer Picture Book Activities

Carve your own path...and just be you! These words from the Happy Dreamer are just about the best message I could send my students before they leave our classroom community. All of Peter H. Reynolds' books are filled with encouragement and wisdom, and this is no different. Each and every one of your students will be encouraged to dream big dreams and go out into the world and reach them, in their own way! I love that!

Songbird written by Jenn Larson

Songbird, written by Jenn Larson is a sweet story of big dreams and determination. This book follows the main character, Sydney Sparrow as she takes her dreams into her own hands (or wings). After telling her family and teacher that she wants to be a conductor, she is told time and time again, no bird can be a conductor. She refused to take no for an answer and day after day puts a plan into place to one day lead a symphony herself. Your students will love to cheer Sydney on and then share their own big dreams, too! Have students share what their BIG dreams are in a class conversation circle or by having them write their own DREAM BIG poems!

Wrapping up the school year with picture books that welcome new adventures is the perfect way to say goodbye to your students. These read alouds are filled with love and good wishes. You will surely want to add these books to your end of year routine and celebrations.

Happy summer, teacher friends!

Connect with me on Instagram for more picture book recommendations!

You might be interested in reading:

Check out my favorite end of year activities
right HERE

Like this no-prep one!

Last Week of School Read Alouds

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Last Week of School Read Alouds

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