As I have mentioned before, the school year is several days away, and I am gearing up to welcome 150, well 143 to be exact, sophomores into my classroom. That means 143 children will be asking me the same question: “What should I do with my summer assignment?”
Pet Peeve Alert: I cannot stand when all of my students ask me prior to class what they should be doing or what we are going to be doing or where they should turn something in, etc. I think that they should wait until I start class because then I will only have to explain it all to them once (ok, maybe like three times; they are kids) instead of explaining to every single student.
I have tried in the past couple of years to put messages on the board anticipating their questions before I begin class, which does seem to help, even thought I find myself repeating “look at the board” a hundred times a day.
Anyway, planning. So, I follow several planner girls on Instagram, some of whom are teachers. When I say planner girls, I mean girls who hard core like to decorate their planners with stickers and washi tape and they write everything down in beautiful pens and colors. I’ve seen it referred to as “Glam Planning.” I don’t much like the term because I don’t really find myself to be very glamorous, but I guess it fits. One of the planner girls made a call out for any teachers who use a Bullet Journal, an analog system for planning.
Even though I use a very much modified version for everyday use, I have decided to use a more traditional bullet journal for work. In the past, I would carry my planner, a spiral notebook, and a binder to carry all of my paperwork, notes, and of course lesson plans. I was just weighed down with too much. This year, I wanted to try something different.
For my planner I chose a paperback Moleskine Cahier Journal, Extra Large, Blank page. The original color is grey, but as you can see from above, I covered it with washi tape to match my classroom decoration. For the different sections, I have used even more washi tape to better help me locate my information.
Above I have my to do list that I have just taped in because I forgot to leave room for pre-planning week when I was putting this all together. On the right side is a page to tape a list of my class rosters that will be easy to take with my for fire drills, and a page to keep track of important dates. One thing that I did not anticipate when I was putting this together was utilizing monthly spreads. I am thinking, if I am able, I will add that to the back of the planner.
Here is a weekly spread and a close up of my weekly spread. My rows consists of meetings, objectives for each lesson, WODs (words of the day), lesson plans, and notes or thoughts. On the right page will be a place for me to writeout even more notes about the lessons to include rubrics, maybe funny things kids said that week, doodles, to do lists for the week, etc.
The next section is a list of my WODs. I used to keep this list separate from my planner, but then I would lose it and have to make a new list. Now, it will just stay with my planner. I use these WODs to help build the students vocabulary. There is such a debate about what is the best way to teach vocabulary…ok, I’ll save that one for another time.
Finally, I have a place for faculty meeting notes and professional development notes.
I like the concept of having everything in one place and written down. I have made some acknowledgments of my mistakes, and I probably wouldn’t do it this way again. I think I would love to have a yellow Kikki.K large and build my planner system the way I have built the one I use every day with tabs and dividers and monthly spreads and daily spreads and so forth. Unfortunately, I don’t think the large yellow planner is available anymore through the store. 😦
You can catch a glimpse of my everyday planner here.