"5 Minutes Left" Activities for the Elementary Classroom

Add to Folder
creative writing
children's book
classroom tools
language arts and writing
Create new folder

Engage your fast finishers at the end of class with these 5-minute early-finisher activities for elementary students.

We've all been there: your students have finished early, and the few minutes you have left at the end of class is not enough to start something new, but you don't want it to be free time, either. Use these "five minutes left" early-finisher ideas to keep your elementary students engaged and learning when you have extra time. Choose from 10 activities with handy printable task cards.

Browse our full collection of Classroom Management resources, or discover activities, worksheets, and printables for the new school year in our Back to School Headquarters.

How to Use The Task Cards

These 10 fun and challenging fast-finisher activities cover math skills, language arts, critical thinking, and communication skills. Print and cut cards so you have them handy when you need them. Each activity is no or low prep and very flexible, so you can adapt it for your classroom needs!

Perfect for elementary students and early middle school grades. The activities work best for the whole class and for small groups.

Choose From Fast Finisher Activities Like ...


Practice mental math skills by giving students a series of math problems to do in their heads. No pencils or paper allowed!


Assign each student, or each small group of students, a letter of the alphabet. Have students make a list of as many items around the room as they can find that begin with their assigned letter. Give them a short time limit to make it more challenging.


Two students challenge each other at the board. Select any subject, such as addition problems, comprehension questions, or spelling. The student who writes the correct answer the quickest wins. Split your class into two teams to make this game more challenging.

1 |
2 |
3 |
4 |
5 |
+ show tags
Teaching Strategies:
About the author

Tina Wheeler


About Tina

Tina Wheeler (B.A., M.A.) is a freelance writer, teacher, and principal based in Missouri. Over her decade of teaching experience, Tina has taught from pre-K to adults, in… Read more

loading gif