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