I love getting this question from kids. Since they don’t all work at the same pace, finish times can vary by several minutes. Here’s what it sounds like in my classroom when a child tells me he’s done.
Child: “I’m done. Now what can I do?”
Me: “What do you want to do?”
Child: “I don’t know.”
Me: “Let me know when you decide, and I’ll let you know if it’s okay.”
At this point, they look at me like I’m kind of crazy. Sometimes they ask rather hesitantly, “Can I read?” To which I reply, “Sure, why not?”
(There’s nothing in my contract that states I have to do all the thinking in my classroom.)