Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Time-Savers & Helpful Hints! [Link-Up]

Oh goodness. It's hard to believe that Thanksgiving is only TWO WEEKS AWAY!! Our first quarter at school completely flew by.
This week, Blog Hoppin' is having a major Thanksgiving linky party! I missed yesterday, but I will link up for Monday & Tuesday together.

Time-savers for me…

1. These mailboxes…
Look back there. No. By the cabinet. Hiding. THOSE! :)

They are FABULOUS. I also have a mailbox (like you would have at your house). Any papers that need to go home go into that mailbox. I have one student who passes those papers out every single day. Papers go home as soon as I grade them. (Unless they need to be kept for portfolios). It is a huge time-saver. 

2. Giving students as much responsibility as possible

I have jobs for every single student. I have a student in charge of recess equipment. A student in charge of the blue bag (has inhalers, epi-pen, etc). A student in charge of recording the clip chart. All these jobs do take training at the beginning of the school year, but once the students are comfortable, are SUCH a timesaver. I also have students help me staple, file, and sort in the morning before the bell rings. 

3. This planner

I pink puffy heart love my Erin Condren planner. It was definitely a leap, since it is a pricey little item. BUT SO WORTH IT! At the beginning of each quarter, I put the standards for each week in my planner and go ahead and put in things that stay the same. 

Helpful Hints:

1. Have someone on your team that you can turn to. My mentor from last year was amazing. This year, I have another amazing mentor, but she teaches ESL, not fourth grade. So I have kind of adopted two of my teammates to be my mentors. I can ask them anything. Questions about curriculum, about a student's behavior, or about something going on at the school. I still ask my official mentor questions, but during the day I'll run across the hall to Courtney or talk to Amber at recess. 

2. Use your prep period!
This is something I'm trying to get better at. I'm trying not to spend my entire prep period chatting or sitting around. I try to make a plan and stick to it. Of course, things come up, like a phone call or something else that must be taken care of, but using your prep period for what it's for makes a world of difference!

3. Come in early
Okay, I know some people will definitely not agree with this one. It's not for everyone. I typically get to school between 6:30 (when it opens) and 6:45. With that said, I don't have a husband or kids. I do live 40 minutes away though. I get to school early and get so much done. I make copies if I need to, laminate sometimes, finalize lesson plans, and prep Guided Reading. It's not for everyone, but it works for me! 

That's all the tips I have for now. As a second year teacher, I feel as if I have some advice. :) 

I hope everyone has a fabulous week!

1 comment:

  1. You are so right about the prep period. If we could only have all those hours back! Today I spent 20 minutes of my prep waiting for the color copier to work! What was I thinking?! I could have at least brought a pile of papers down with me to grade while I waited. (Never did print out the right thing, by the way!)
    Forever in Fifth Grade