Introduction: Teacher Tasks Organizer Notebook

Picture of Teacher Tasks Organizer Notebook

As I am getting ready to report back to school from the summer break, I began getting my thoughts, plans and paraphernalia ready. Besides teaching and keeping all of those necessary curriculum related items and student informational tasks organized, teachers have a lot of meetings, training and administrative tasks such as professional development to corral and retain. It is easy to start stacking up the paperwork associated into a huge pile that starts to resemble junk mail and then be overwhelmed when it is necessary to find one of those "important papers".

This year I have two added responsibilities: a team leader (department head), and a mentor for a big school district program/grant. 

Even without these two new responsibilities, keeping your meeting and administrative paperwork organized is a chore. In my state/district, we have a lengthy teacher evaluation process. Last year, it seemed that things came up unexpected and that throws everything in my life a kilter as I try to manage my many students, my personal life and then come up with a mountain of evidence that what I'm doing is reputable as far as my teaching practice is concerned. Also as a department head, I will need to organize and deliver the instructional information to my team. So, organization seems to be a key element for increasing my effectiveness and keeping my sanity.

So I thought this year, even before school started, I would try to tame those papers into one organizational notebook. Here is my process as I go along. I will obviously need to change this as the year unfolds, because there will be new tasks added!

Step 1: Lists and Calendars

Picture of Lists and Calendars

The first thing I did was make a list based on the deconstruction of my "appraisal" notebook from last year and the already started pile of papers. 

Then I began listing what papers I'd already accumulated including the group from my last year's evidence.

Then I made the list into categories.

From this I prioritized to make the meetings I thought would happen the most and that had the most importance, putting those in front.

I pulled out my pocket tabs and made labels. I prefer the tabs that have pockets so that if I don't have a hole punch handy, I can put the information into the pocket until a later date. Also occasionally information comes in too small of a package - such as the book mark I've slipped (and paper-clipped) into the pocket.

I also put a zipper pouch with some supplies: highlighter, pens, pencils, glue stick, scissors, and sticky notes. 

Then I made a cover page and end title and slipped those into the notebook.

I am ready for the meetings that I will attend.

Step 2: Email Calendar Prompts

Picture of Email Calendar Prompts

As an additional tip, in my school email account is a calendar/event planner option. This I find very helpful as I spend a lot of time on the computer during the school day. Our district takes attendance online, and we are also supposed to check our school email several times a day for important information.

I went through the calendar that was posted for the year and in my school email account, created an events calendar to organize meetings and events coming up. I will add to this calendar as the year progresses, for example-- faculty meetings and grading dates will be added as an event with a reminder in my email calendar. My email then will prompt me that this is coming up (actually in a very annoying manner!!) I can also use the attendance feature of this to email my department team about meetings and events.

I found this tool to be very helpful in remembering the multitude of events that clutter a teacher's life.

Step 3: Final Thoughts: Meta-cognition

Picture of Final Thoughts: Meta-cognition

I will be entering this instructable in a back to school contest,  but this wasn't my main motivation for creating the notebook. Especially as usually my instructables are fairly simple and practical without a lot of bells and whistles. A while back I came to the conclusion that I write these for me. They help me do something better, or easier  or enable me to think about what I'm doing (meta-cognition). If someone else benefits I am happy to share. 

So I thank instructables for enabling me to share, write, research and discover!


poofrabbit (author)2012-12-02

Nicely done, you know I used on of those pencil pouches in the front of my sub folder. I leave two dollars in cash in there with a note saying where the soda and candy is located and to please have one on me today as a thank you. :)

Penolopy Bulnick (author)2012-09-19

Nice! So very organized! Wish I could be that organized :)

wilgubeast (author)2012-08-17

This looks great! Super useful, and I'm glad that documenting it helps you engage in metacognition.

artfulann (author)wilgubeast2012-08-17

Thanks! I'm hoping it will be very useful and will make things easier for me to keep up with while I'm spinning all those plates in the air.

sunshiine (author)2012-08-16

This is really a great organizer! I am sure it will indeed benefit many people. Thanks for sharing and have a great day!

artfulann (author)sunshiine2012-08-16

thanks my sunny beam of good cheer!

sunshiine (author)artfulann2012-08-16

Aw that was sweet! Thanks!

About This Instructable




Bio: I'm an artist, environmentalist, animal lover, gardener, recycling nut, a high school teacher, crafter, Mom, Christian and widow who reads a lot in between ... More »
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