Sunday, March 3, 2013

Planning your prep time

Of course you plan your lessons! I normally have mine planned out a week in advanced. But, do you plan your prep times?

I never used to plan out my prep time. So often, the 20 minutes would go by, and I would have very little accomplished. I now have a weekly template for my prep time.

Here is an example:

On Fridays, school starts at 8:30. My PE time also starts at 8:30! I meet everyone outside (we do the Pledge of Allegiance outside as a school on Fridays), and am ready with my clip board. I walk the students to PE after morning announcements and take attendance as they enter. By the time we have had morning announcements from the principal and I've taken attendance, it is really 8:35 or 8:40.

Now I have from 8:35 (on a good day) till 8:55 to pick up my students! Here is my plan for those twenty minutes:

  1. Enter attendance online
  2. Use a template (from last week's letter) and write a parent letter
  3. Email the parent letter to all families
  4. One or two individual emails to families (I don't have enough time in 20 minutes to make any phone calls!)
  5. Pick up my students 20 minutes later!

Do I always get all of that done in 20 minutes? Of  course not! I am human. On the other hand, I know that I shouldn't spend 30 minutes deliberating over what I am going to write to my parents, because I just don't have the time. Also, during the course of the week, I try to jot down in one place any ideas I have for the parent letter.

Try planning just one of your prep times! How does it work for you?

Online classes I offer for teachers through

FIRST DAYS OF SCHOOL: From Stress to Success
SAVE TIME: Time Management for Your Teaching & Your Life   
EDITING MADE EASY: Strategies For All Writers 

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