Key Takeaways

  • The time it takes to complete an independent class assignment or quiet work varies from student to student.
  • Students who complete their work long before any of their classmates are often referred to as fast finishers or early finishers.
  • To keep fast finishers focused and classroom distractions to a minimum, it's important to be prepared with extra activities and skills practice.
  • You know the feeling. You've barely handed out the assignment when you hear the dreaded word, "Done!" You survey the room. All eyes are on their papers except that one smiling child in the back of the room: the fast finisher.

    Don't panic! Having a system in place for those students who finish activities quickly will keep distractions to a minimum and will ensure all students remain engaged in the lesson once the class comes back together. Of course, preparation is essential so that before students get started you can instruct them on exactly what to do if they complete their work early.

    Whether you designate a crate with a few file folders filled with educational skills sheets, or a wall display with guidance on what to do if they finish early, having resources available and organized is key to keeping your fast finishers focused. 

    Here are 9 fun, engaging, and of course, educational activities you can print off and have within arm's reach for the fast finishers in your classroom:

    1. Musical Mouse (Grades PreK–K)

    This fun activity encourages students to follow the uppercase letter M through a maze to help a mouse reach her mandolin.

    2. Hidden Picture Consonant Fun (Grade K)

    Students recognize words that begin with consonants t, b, s, and d, and then color in the hidden picture.

    3. Magic Circles (Grades 2–3)

    Students use numbers to fill in each magic circle puzzle. There's even a bonus challenge!

    4. Yesterday's Crossword (Grades 2–3)

    Students learn about verb tenses by converting each present-tense verb clue into a past-tense answer on the puzzle.

    5. Sight-Word Speed Read (Grades K–1)

    Fast finishers can test their speediness by sorting these sight words as quickly as possible.

    6. Game Time! (Grades K–1)

    Students practice telling time to the hour and half-hour.

    7. Word Search (Grades K–2)

    With this word search, you can challenge your fast finishers to find sight words they've been studying.

    8. Sight Words Learning Mat (Grades K–2)

    Encourage students to learn new sight words with just crayons or colored pencils.

    9. Sight Words Packet (Grades K–2)

    This 10-page activity packet that introduces students to ten sight words from the Dolch list will keep even the fastest of finishers busy.

    These are just a few fun and educational activities, lessons, and worksheets you have access to when you subscribe to Scholastic Teachables. To add more resources to your collection that will engage the fast finishers in your classroom, sign up today for a FREE 30-day trial of Scholastic Teachables.