I was so excited to have the opportunity to post on Ms. Preppy. I love Caitlin's blog and when I made the arrangements for this blog swap, I sorta, might have, selected myself to go onto her blog because I love it so much. But then, it came time to write my post. I froze. I blanked. Not only do I have big shoes to fill, but now she's an ABA therapist. That means that I should talk about behavior management or something, right? Well, I've done a couple of those lately, and I'm kinda tapped out. So, I tried to brainstorm for some common ground.
Organization! Doesn't it seem like no matter what, we all could be better organized? When I was student teaching, my cooperating teacher used folders to keep herself organized. She had a different folder for every day and she would store things in those folders. I loved that idea! I decided to use letter trays myself. I have a different tray for each day, and since they come in packs of 3, I have a spare one for long term files. My desk is still a disaster, but it's the best system I could think of. I created some file folder labels for you if you'd like to try that system out. I have a black and white one and a pink and green one since I know color printing isn't always an option for some people. And they're polka dots because, well, I'm a big fan of polka dots! Click on the pictures to download the file.
Last year, I started the year with a calendar that I wrote to do lists on. Then I started using little yellow pads. No matter what, I never could keep a system going. I had post it notes all over the computer with reminders. I don't want to be a disorganized mess this year. My position is changing and it won't be as crazy (please don't let it be as crazy!) and so I've resolved to be clean and organized! I created this weekly sheet that I think may help me.
Again, I created a color version and a black and white version. I like having a To Do list because I love crossing things off. Don't we all? I want to put the dates on the bottom with information on important things that week or in the next week or two. And I want to use the follow up circle for things I need to follow up on from previous weeks. Plus, there's a little bit of space left over for notes if I need to throw a phone number or something down. The files are images. That way you can right-click and save the file. Then you can paste it into Publisher, Word, or whatever program you prefer, insert a text box, and then type straight onto it. I like to have my lists written out by hand, but I know many of you prefer the neatness of typing.
Finally, a while back I bought myself a super fancy Erin Condren planner with some super coupons. I hope to spend some time this year figuring it out, planning things out, and getting my money's worth. If you haven't seen those planners, go check them out. Tons of people love them.
I hope I've given you some resources that you can use to get organized now and for the next school year!
Tessa Maguire is a former reading teacher and differentiated instruction coach. She currently is in a dual role administration and curriculum coaching position. She spends her days helping her K-3 teachers find what works best for them and their students. She blogs about the resources she finds and creates and she shares tips and strategies for effective instruction. You can find out more information on her blog Tales from Outside the Classroom: http://talesfromoutsidetheclassroom.blogspot.com