Classroom Time Capsules

This is a great activity to do with students at the beginning of the school year. Each student makes a time capsule that will be opened at the end of the school year and show how they have changed throughout the year.

This activity addresses:

  • Following directions
  • Turn taking and sharing materials
  • Fine motor skills
  • Alternative methods of access

What you need:

  • iPad or iPhone
  • Blue2 switch
  • Printer
  • 1-qt Ziploc bags (1 for each student)
  • Construction paper
  • Tape
  • Pen or pencil
  • battery operated scissors
  • Blue2 switch

* iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. iOS is a trademark or registered trademark of Cisco in the U.S. and other countries and is used under license.


1. Start by explaining to the students what a time capsule is. A common script would be, “A time capsule is a container filled with different objects that hide, and open in the future. Some time capsules are not meant to be opened for hundreds or even thousands of years. Today we are going to make our very own time capsules that we will open up at the end of the school year. In our time capsules, we will include a picture of you, a picture of your favorite activity, and a picture of your favorite food.”
2. Have students help you take a picture of each student using an iPad or iPhone. For students who are unable to tap the shutter button on the iPad or iPhone, use a Blue2 switch and Switch Control (download appropriate guide for your use under "Downloads") to scan to the shutter button and activate it with the switch. Print each students' photo.
3. Trace each student’s hand on construction paper using a pen or pencil. Have each student write their name and today’s date on their hand.
4. Using the switch adapted battery operated scissors, have each student cut out their hand print, the photo of themselves, the image of their favorite activity, and the image of their favorite food.
5. Each student inserts all three of their photos into their Ziploc bag and attaches their hand-print to the outside of the bag using tape.
6. The teacher stores each time capsule until the end of the school year. At the end of the school year, the students can see if their favorite food, activity, or how they look has changed over the year.