Teacher’s Corner is a monthly newsletter from eNotes just for teachers. In it, experienced educator and eNotes contributor Susan Hurn shares her tips, tricks, and insight into the world of teaching. Check out this month’s Teacher’s Corner column below, or sign up to receive the complete newsletter in your inbox at eNotes.com.
Whether you’re a new teacher or a classroom veteran, the school year can feel overwhelming, more so than ever since the demands of standards-based testing and professional development have grown increasingly complex and time consuming. Teaching now seems to require holding down two jobs at once: teaching kids with one hand and meeting a plethora of administrative mandates with the other. It’s tough to carry such a load day after day without sinking under the weight.
According to the old proverb, “A stitch in time saves nine.” It’s true, and it’s still good advice. Being proactive takes a little time, but it saves a lot of work and heads off problems, making a difficult year more manageable and less stressful. Here are a few ways to save yourself in the classroom by acting sooner rather than later:
- Organize your paperwork, but don’t overdo it:
- An organizational system shouldn’t be so complicated that it takes hours to create and you have to remember what’s filed where when you’re looking for something.
- Backing up critical information is a must, but recording the same information in multiple places wastes time.
- Making lists keeps things on track, but if you have so many lists you need a master list to keep track of them, you’ve overachieved! (I’m speaking from experience here, so trust me.)
- Organize your classroom in ways that work for you. Check out this list of 100 tips for classroom organization, many of them submitted by other teachers. Scroll down and you’ll find a mini-list of 5 online tools to use in getting organized. Also, visit this page at cybraryman.com for links to 32 articles (32!) with classroom organization tips and tricks.