End Of Year Essay

Here are 20 questions to help you and your students reflect on the school year. You could use these informally for discussion when you have a few minutes, or, for a more personal reflection experience, take a few of your favorites to use for a survey or as writing/journal prompts. There is also a list of reflection questions for teachers here.

  1. What is something we did this year that you think you will remember for the rest of your life?
  2. What is something you accomplished this year that you are proud of?
  3. What was the nicest thing someone in our class did for you this year?
  4. What was the most challenging part of this year for you?
  5. Where is your favorite place in our classroom (or school)? Why?
  6. If you could change one thing that happened this year, what would it be?
  7. What are three things you did this year to help your classmates?
  8. What are the three most important things you learned this year?
  9. What is something that was hard for you at the start of the year but is easy now?
  10. In what area do you feel you made your biggest improvements?
  11. What is your favorite part of the day in our class? Why?
  12. What is something you taught your teacher or classmates this year?
  13. Of the books you read this year, which was your favorite? Why?
  14. What was the best piece of writing that you did this year? Why do you think it is your best?
  15. What person at our school has made the biggest impact in your life this year? Why?
  16. What is something the teacher could have done to make this year better?
  17. What are six adjectives that best describe this school year?
  18. Knowing what you know now, if you could write a letter to yourself that would travel back in time so that you would receive it at the start of the school year, what advice would you give your younger self?
  19. When you consider the rest of your life, what percentage of what you learned this year do you think will be useful to you?
  20. What advice would you give students who will be in this class next year?
UPDATE–May 2015: I just made these questions into task cards! Get them for FREE right here!

I recently found out that Laura Candler of Corkbord Connections has posted this terrific freebie called School Year Reflections that could easily be used with the questions on this post. I just love those fluffy clouds! Hop on over to her site to download this fun printable!


Looking for more open-ended questions to ask your students?You can find 200 of them in easy-to-use card format right here.

Have more to add? Please share with a comment!

Like this:

Twenty-Sixteen – what the hell was that?  As I sit here and reflect on the year that has been I am amused with the craziness of it all.  For many it was a horrible year for others a good year.

I am fortunate that I fall into the second camp.  Twenty-sixteen was a good year for me.

As a collective though it marked a scary turn for humanity.  The social and political changes that occurred this year have left many feeling anxious.  Racism, elitism, sexism, political f%&kups and the loss of many great singers/actors have marred the year.



I have listened to people talk about all the hate in the world and how they feel as if the  ‘world is falling apart’.  I understand where they are coming from, but here’s the thing.  I truely believe that the world is still good.  I believe that humans are good.  I believe that despite all the negativity, fear and segregation LOVE will heal us all.

This may sound like the voice of an unrealistic romantic but if we ALL took the time to be more compassionate, understanding and empathetic we can create a powerful change. Even when the world seems so big that it seems impossible to make a difference.

But as Ghandi said  “be the change you want to see in the world”.



Which brings me to the point of this post.  What changes do you want to make in 2017?  Who do you want to become?

Are these questions that you have ever considered?  With the remnants of Christmas dinner almost gone it is natural to turn your thoughts to the New Year.  Especially the New Years Resolution thoughts.  The all too familiar “in 2017 I am going to [insert weight loss, health, finance goal]” dialogue.

(And by the way, if you do have plans to set some NYR or Goals can I please stop you right there!  With 92% of all people who set NYR/Goals failing it is completely ineffective to set them.  That’s a terrible failure rate.  Thus in 2017 I am rebelling against the conventional way of setting goals in the #ResolutionRebellion – a FREE 3 week Body, Mindset & Mojo course for rebellious women who want success in 2017 – click here to join!).


Self-Reflection, Feedback & Moving Forward

The beginning of the year is a nautral transition time to pause, reflect and take stock of your life.  Yet with the  hype of Christmas, parties and holidays it is easy to run in to the year without any regard to what has been.

Reflection is the practice of introspection. Some people do this naturally whilst others need to practice it.  Regardless of your tendency, reflection allows you the opportunity to assess your current situation. You can assess your action and behaviours against your core values, beliefs, thoughts and feelings.

By being self-aware and reflective you are better able to navigate your life allowing you to choose the actions, people, jobs and environment that leaving you feeling fulfilled, content and thriving.

Reflection is a powerful skill to have. But for many, carving reflection time into the schedule is down the priority list. The achievement of goals and lists tends to take the top spots. Not that there is anything wrong with that.  Having a clear vision of the future is necessary.  But the achievement of the vision can be greater (and quicker) if combined with reflection.

When we choose not to reflect on our lives we are choosing not to take the time to invest in our self.

Many of the worlds greatest leaders have spent time in self-reflection; from Socrates to Abraham Lincoln to Warren Buffet. All acknowledging that this is an important piece of their fulfilment and success.


Photo attribute @quotefancy


So before you rush into the New Year with great intentions of setting Resolutions take the time to pause.  Reflect on what has happened THIS year.

The following reflection questions will help you understand YOU. They will help you discover the what, who and why of this past year, unveiling important information that will set you up for 2017.

This powerful yearly reflection has been a practice of mine for years. It allows me to take inventory of my life so that I can be in the best position to CREATE my life.

If you didn’t know it already it’s important to remember that you get to CREATE your life.  It is totally doable to achieve whatever you set your mind to if you have a strong platform to work from.

Let’s get into the questions:


Nardia’s Top 10 End oF Year Reflection Questions:

Before you begin I recommend you give yourself at least 45- 60 mins of uninterrupted time.  I personally like to do this with a glass of wine (but as you know I do everything with a glass of wine!) and a nice candle burning in the background.

Relax, and let the writing begin (avoid getting fussy with your answers or trying to edit them as you go.  Just get whatever thoughts you have out of your head and onto the paper).

  1. What were my best achievements this year (these do not necessarily need to be big, grand achievements. Consider the little things too)
  2. How did those achievements make me feel?
  3. What were my 3 biggest challenges or obstacles I faced this year? How did I overcome them? Who did I become as a result?
  4. What was I truly grateful for this year?
  5. How have I developed or changed as a person?
  6. What have I done differently this year? What new people have I met or new experiences have I had?
  7. How much fun have I had this year? Was I fulfilled?
  8. Who has helped me, been influential or impacted my life this year?
  9. What am I really proud of?
  10. Is everything I have done this year in alignment with my big dream or goal?

Once you have completed them, high five yourself, and then revisit the answers in a couple of days to feel how they sit with you.

I promise you that this is one of THE best practices to have in your life.  Regardless of whatever goal you want to achieve in 2017 you MUST start here.  Speaking of which, I also invite you to join the #ResolutionRebellion here.  If you are serious about getting what you want next year then you have to kick conventional Goal Setting to the curb.

In the #ResolutionRebellion I will show you the exact strategies and tools that will help you ACHIEVE and MAINTAIN your outcomes.


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