Organizational tips?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Organizational tips?
Mon, 07-17-2006 - 5:59pm

I'm already thinking about the new school year, and I'm focusing on my lack of organizational skills. I'm pretty good about handling homework - I never lose an assignment. But, I do have trouble with all the other paperwork (ie - memos, calendar updates, newsletters, mail that I don't have a chance to look at, notes from parents, notes to myself, and more!) Does anyone have any great organizational tips for handling the paperwork overload? Last year's solution for me was to stuff it in a giant box and sort through it later. Of course, "later" turned into June! LOL!

I'd love any organizational tips you have for paperwork and ANY OTHER ORGANIZATIONAL TIPS AND TOOLS that you find helpful! Thanks!

Feb 09 Siggy

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Mon, 07-17-2006 - 6:18pm

I can't offer any advice, because I NEED SOME MYSELF.


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-24-2003
Mon, 07-17-2006 - 9:44pm

I like a lot of Rasheida's suggestions. I used similar procedures when I was in K-6. I found that having a place for everything helped. If the kids brought in a note, I had a basket on my desk that they put it in. Then I'd see them and get to the ASAP.



iVillage Member
Registered: 10-03-2004
Mon, 07-17-2006 - 10:55pm

The best approach for me is to deal with it right away. If I set it aside then I won't want to deal with it later.

A lot


iVillage Member
Registered: 07-14-2005
Tue, 07-18-2006 - 12:15am

We started back in today. But my room is all back together, & will spend tomorrow adjusting last years plans to this years 1st few weeks & getting ready for open house THursday nite.

Like Sherry I keep & file everything. 3-ring binders for daily lesson plans & materials & tests - the whole years at home divided by quarter, but a small one for each grade in the classroom for the current quarter divided by week. Each quarter is also laid out on a one sheet quarterly planner that keeps me grounded to the realities of covering the required curriculum at a glance & how it fits in those 9 or 10 weeks.

I teach jr hi math & keep all students work once entered in the gradebook. I also keep a missing work log (a page per student per quarter in alphabetical order in a 3-ring binder) & update it as I enter grades on the computer each weekend. This serves as a one stop place to go for each students missing assignments for makeup work (in a regular class I would make the students responsible for keeping their missing work logs updated - but I have Track C kids who have a bit of a problem w/being really responsible students). I also have a weekly planner work wall for the current week that is updated daily which it is the students responsibility to check if they've missed class or aren't sure of assignments.

On my desk I keep a double pocket file for each class for attendance, seating charts, current communications either to be handed out from office, or current from parents til ready to file, pending disciplinary's, or any pending info on students. Also on my desk are 2 folders for each class - one for collected work to be corrected, & one for the work to be returned (the "returned" generally goes in a big box on the counter sorted by class periods (unless the student needs to redo, get a signature, etc.)& every couple weeks the students go thru & file their papers into their own file folder in their class section of the box). I keep a file cabinet file for each student in which goes all that work at the end of each quarter grading period til the next one, these files also include copies of disciplinary actions, parent notes or communications, IEPs etc... Also on my desk I keep index cards alphabetically sorted by class on which each student has given me their contact information for when the need arises to call/contact home. We are required to keep a "positive communication log" so before I file any notes of communication, I make note in my communication log book. With the weekly bulletin I sit down & note all dates & times on my large blotter monthly calendar on my desk then throw away the paper or delete the e-mail. If it's info in my mailbox that really doesn't need immediate attn, I put in an "in-basket" to get to whenever, if it has a time or date on it, I note it on the blotter calendar before it goes in the basket to give myself a reminder that it's there; & if on cursory glance it's really not something I want to consider, I toss it when I get to my room. Cuts down on the paper & all the times & dates I need to keep track of are right in front of my nose whenever I sit at my desk & easy to keep track of.

I give daily points for being prepared, being on time, participating, & behavior in class. - so I've made up a class list for each class with a space for each to be checked off each day & start off doing a cursory check to that clipboard after attendance while the students are doing their bell work warm-ups. W/an extra colunmn each week, this has turned out to also be a good place to keep tabs on stuff to be returned by adding a note for the signed test or the occasional forms sent home from the office that need to be returned. I have the entire quarter layed out on the front & back of a page so can keep track of anything within that time frame w/o always having a separate checklist (also makes it easy to transfer those points into gradebook on the weekend) - if the office has sent along a separate check list I can keep track of it in the pocket folder for the class & will always find it when marking attendance each day.

Well there's a few of my organizers for starters - if you can't tell, I am probably organized to the point just shy of being anal about it...

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-01-2005
Tue, 07-18-2006 - 5:26am

I am not an organized person, but worked for Satan for 5 years and had to learn how to keep things in order.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Tue, 07-18-2006 - 9:26am

Hi Sherry,

I use the number system too. It made things go so much easier.


iVillage Member
Registered: 02-28-2006
Fri, 07-21-2006 - 1:35pm

These ideas are great. I'll have to remember all of them and start the year out right when we go back for in-service.