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The Teachers Organizational Survival Guide

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Academic Calendar Planner at House of Doolittle

If you ask almost any classroom teacher what the one skill that helps them achieve their daily, weekly, and monthly goals is, most will respond that organization is the game-changer. It is no exaggeration to say that teachers wear many hats and spin many plates. Their focus is, of course, on the children they are charged to educate, but they also have to juggle parent meetings, testing schedules, and professional development, just to name a very few. And this only covers the responsibilities of their professional lives.  

An academic calendar planner is an essential tool for teachers to keep their classrooms running like a well-oiled machine and their home lives running at peak efficiency. Staying organized can help teachers or any working professional manage workloads, which in turn reduces stress. Here are some tips for staying organized and maintaining an orderly classroom:  

Create a schedule. Develop a plan for each day, week, and month. Identify what tasks you need to complete each day and schedule time for lesson planning, grading, and other responsibilities. Prioritize tasks by making to-do lists to designate what is important and urgent or what can wait. This will help you stay on track and manage your time effectively.   

Keep your academic planner or lesson planner handy. Most of us are visual learners, so a physical planner can help you keep track of important dates, deadlines, and other appointments. Choose a planner that fits your needs as well as your organizational style and make a habit of using it every day. An academic calendar planner used in conjunction with your best organizational practices is a tool that helps you stay on top of things, so nothing falls through the cracks.  

Organize your classroom. A disorderly classroom is detrimental to teachers and students. Cleanliness and a lack of clutter can help everyone focus on the most important task as hand—learning. Use file folders, binders, bins, rolling carts, covered storage containers, and shelves to store basic supplies and other materials. Use labels and color-coding on all files and containers to help you easily find what you or your students need.  

Get your students involved. Teachers do not have to go it alone in their classrooms. Engaging students by assigning responsibilities is a learning technique that will teach work ethic, collaboration, and communication and instill pride in a job well done. Assign classroom helpers to clean, organize, and check academic planners for upcoming activities or deadlines. Students will learn accountability and understand that it takes everyone to shape their classroom as a safe, clean, and comfortable learning environment.  

Simplify grading. Now, this does not mean creating a new system. It means that it is well-known that grading takes a lot of time to accomplish. This chore can be made easier if you develop a system that helps to organize and speed up the process. Use your academic planner to mark dates for tests, quizzes, and projects and create corresponding files or folders designated for each. Use these tools to indicate what papers still require grading and which papers have grading completed.   

Stay connected. Maintaining communication and collaboration with other faculty and administration is critical for staying up to date on school activities, resources, teaching techniques, and other best practices. Sharing this information will help everyone achieve a more organized classroom and school.  

The Need for Self-Care 

We are often inundated with advice about the importance of self-care. Many of us have learned the value of self-care, but sometimes putting it into action can be difficult, especially when teachers prioritize their students over anything else.   

Self-care is not a luxury or some type of indulgence. It is a necessary part of taking care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally. You have probably heard this advice many times, but it is worth repeating. It is essential that you eat a healthy diet, engage in physical exercise, and get adequate sleep to maintain a healthy lifestyle that can help you tackle the challenges of the teaching profession. It is important to be good to yourself because your physical health and state of mind directly influence each child in your classroom.  

Overall, staying organized is an important part of being an effective teacher. An academic calendar planner is the first line of defense in creating a classroom that is running smoothly. Turn to it several times a day, so there are no surprises. There is no guarantee that schedules will stay in place or that emergencies may not occur. Everyone, especially teachers, knows that life happens, but an organized classroom can help everyone adapt when these challenges arise.   

By using these tips and finding strategies that work, you can manage your workload, stay on top of your responsibilities, and create a more productive and less stressful work environment. As a teacher, are you on top of your organizational game? An academic calendar planner might just be the tool you need to keep you and your students prepared to embrace each new day of learning.