Time-Saving Tips - ProTeacher Community




      
Home Join Now Search My Favorites
Help


      ARCHIVE


Time-Saving Tips

>

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Bethany's Avatar
Bethany Bethany is offline
 
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 9,296
Senior Member

Bethany
 
Bethany's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 9,296
Senior Member
Time-Saving Tips
Old 08-08-2006, 05:40 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #1

I'd like some ideas on time-saving tips you use in your classroom for the beginning of the school year. Ideas like how you label your students folders/notebooks and things like that.

Here's a time-saving tip I do on the first day of school that really saves me time later in the school year:

One of the items on my students' supply list is construction paper, so what I do is have the students take out their packs and separate them by color. Then, we combine all the colors and I stack them neatly on the shelf. That way, when we need a particular color of construction paper, I don't have to search for that color...it's already separated!

Plus, it's a good activity for them to do the first day of school because it allows them to chat with friends while doing a task.

Hope this helps someone....please post your time-saving tips!



Last edited by Bethany; 08-08-2006 at 01:23 PM..
Bethany is offline   Reply With Quote

Kat's Mom's Avatar
Kat's Mom Kat's Mom is offline
 
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,549
Senior Member

Kat's Mom
 
Kat's Mom's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,549
Senior Member
Great post, Bethany!
Old 08-08-2006, 05:48 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #2

I had been thinking about asking the same thing! One idea I actually found on here that I'm going to incorporate this year is asking students to bring a mini-stapler on their school supply list. I spend a lot of time running around stapling things together so I thought if each child had their own stapler, we might save time. We'll see...

I have and aide or parent volunteer organize, date, and staple my book orders for me, and it saves a great amount of time. They also assemble books for me, take down old bull. boards, and cut out laminating stuff. They also color file folder activities for me.

I can't wait to see what others have to say!
Kat's Mom is offline   Reply With Quote
KR
 
 
Guest

KR
 
 
Guest
numbers
Old 08-08-2006, 06:04 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #3

Like many others, I'm sure, I use numbers for each child. I assign a number the first day of school for each child. They put their number, along with their name, on every paper, etc. My coat hooks are numbered, mailboxes for student work, word work folders, moose books, etc. I can quickly file homework to be returned into their mailboxes, find a backpack for a student being sent home sick, hand out papers, etc. It saved a lot of time this year in setting up the classroom because the numbers remain from year to year--no changing name labels! Yay! The kids love it, too. You can even line up by number, or odd numbers, or even numbers...a great timesaver.

I also used an idea from a post on this board to save time this year. I made vertical posterboard names in bubble letters, probably 4 inches wide, for each student, hung them from the ceiling and attached a clothespin to each. Now when they make cute projects, I can hang them on their name tag for display without climbing a ladder again. It will also make it easier to return the work to students when the display changes--no hunting for names under the glue and paint, etc.

Can't wait to see more ideas!
  Reply With Quote
Zee Zee is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,026
Senior Member

Zee
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,026
Senior Member

Old 08-08-2006, 07:43 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #4

I can't wait to read everyone's ideas!

One thing that I do is print a whole sheet of labels for each student. This way I can give each child their sheet of labels and they can easily label their folders, notebooks, etc. I keep them in a folder and get them out when we need to label something with more than just a pencil. I also stick the folder of labels in my sub folder so they are available if the sub would like to have the students put them on as nametags.

I also have a parent assemble book orders. I have a generic note that I just have to write the date the book order is due and copy onto colored paper and the parent staples it to the front of the book order packet.
Zee is offline   Reply With Quote
KcK's Avatar
KcK KcK is offline
 
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 509
Senior Member

KcK
 
KcK's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 509
Senior Member
Great Thread!
Old 08-08-2006, 10:36 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #5

I love this thread! I do a lot of what other poster's have mentioned:

1. I number my students for easy reference through the year
2. I also print out labels for each student to label anything and everything. I have the students keep them in their folders to use throughout the year
3. My single best tip is to make a spreadsheet or computer checklist of your class list. My spreadsheet lists all my kids in order and then has 3 columns next to their name and has space at the top for the date and what the list is being used for that day. I use these for everything from recording grades until I can enter them in the computer to recording assignments and forms and money returned. They are invaluable and save me so much time!
4. Another great tip, although stressful for us OCD types, is to have the kids organize your library. If they organize every last book in the right bin/shelf/box, then they know what books you have and since they organized it, they are vested in keeping it that way! It does really save you time before the kids come, but definitely later when they dont have every book in the wrong bin or are aimlessly walking around looking for one!


KcK is offline   Reply With Quote
vateacher's Avatar
vateacher vateacher is offline
 
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 5,218
Senior Member

vateacher
 
vateacher's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 5,218
Senior Member

Old 08-08-2006, 01:39 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #6

1) I'm all about the sticker labels I make them color coded too so the kids learn where to keep them. I don't, however, make a sheet for each student with their names because we don't need that many of them. Usually they have a row to themselves (4). Enough for their nametags.
2) We do all community supplies in my classroom. In the beginning I have plastic dish tubs ready so I can have all the kids help me sort their supplies. I 'll say "If you have PENCILS hold them up!" and I come take their pencils. I go through the whole list until the backpacks are all empty. Then we practice putting our backpacks away.
3) I also give each child a number. That way I don't have to label their cubbies, book boxes, manipulative sets, finished work boxes etc every year. It's all ready to go.
4) I make a check off spread sheet like the previous poster too.
5) I have a parent or parents come in and tear out all the consumable pages from the student editions of the text books by chapter and sort them by page which I then organize in hanging folders for when I need them. It's just easier and it takes the wee ones so much longer to tear out the pages (plus they usually end up not torn out correctly!)

I'm sure there's a lot more but that's all I can think of for now.
vateacher is offline   Reply With Quote
JKB's Avatar
JKB JKB is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Blog Entries: 1
Senior Member

JKB
 
JKB's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Senior Member
Weekly Progress Reports
Old 08-08-2006, 07:07 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #7

I've tried a variety of methods for returning students' graded work, including having paper passers, mailboxes, etc. It would drive me crazy when so many would get stuffed inside desks, crumbled up in backpacks, or just tossed out, plus it seemed like there was too much time lost on returning student work.

Then, about 12 years ago, I switched things around. Now, on Mondays, I send home weekly Progress Reports. I type a quick format, along with notes about things taking place during the upcoming week. It could be anything from annoucing a test to a school wide book fair. I also record test scores from the previous week. Finally, I list any missing assignments. It may sound like a lot of work, but I can complete them for the whole class in about a half hour....which is a lot less time that it took for me to pass out individual papers!

I have a parent volunteer come in on Monday mornings and assemble the weekly progress reports. I use a hanging file folder system, where the graded assignments are initially filed. Then, all of the papers in the folder, along with the weekly progress report goes into a plastic pouch that has a snap closure. (I bought 36 of them a the dollar store four years ago, and about 30 of the original ones are still functioning! I just replenish them as I need them.)

By using this method, parents have the opportunity to see their child's work from the previous week (without it being rolled up into a ball!). They know how their child performed on tests and they know if their child has any missing assignments. They also know what is going on in school. In addition, they sign the bottom of the Progress report and return it to me the plastic pouch, so that I know they received it.

This has saved tons of time (and aggrevation!) in a variety of ways! It is so quick and easy to pass back a Progress Report pouch ONCE a week, compared to passing back individual assignments daily. It also has saved time with parent teacher conferences later down the road! I have never had a parent tell me "I didn't know my child had missing assignments!" or "I didn't know my child had low test scores!" or "I Didn't know there was a test last week!" or "I didn't know my child was struggling with....", because they sign the weekly report!
JKB is offline   Reply With Quote
J.Elaine's Avatar
J.Elaine J.Elaine is offline
 
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 1,431
Blog Entries: 5
Senior Member

J.Elaine
 
J.Elaine's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 1,431
Senior Member
What if . . .
Old 08-09-2006, 03:04 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #8

What if the student doesn't bring the folder back in with a parent signature?

Do you ever have that problem? If so, how do you handle it?

If you never have that problem, please tell me the magical words you use that get your kids to bring in their folders with their parents' signatures.
J.Elaine is offline   Reply With Quote
JKB's Avatar
JKB JKB is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Blog Entries: 1
Senior Member

JKB
 
JKB's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Senior Member
J. Elaine......Incentives help......
Old 08-09-2006, 09:09 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #9

The first step to making this system work well is to rally parents behind it, which I do right away! I explain it in my "Welcome Back to School" folder....(I've grown beyond just a letter.......) I also discuss it when we have our Open House the second week of school, during my "Parent Presentation".

Next, I use incentives......When I pass the folders out on Monday, I collect them first thing on Tuesday and reward them for returning it on time. Sometimes it is a treat, other times a sticker, just depends.

*Side note.......a couple of my colleagues and I had a discussion about whether or not this was an incentive or bribery! I finally came to the conclusion that if you want to tempt somebody into doing something they SHOULD do, it is an incentive. If you want to tempt somebody into doing something they SHOULD NOT do, it is bribery! What do you think?

Since I am only human and can forget things once in awhile, I am sensitive to the possibility that a child might forget to bring it back the next day. That's when I give them one day grace........if they bring it back on Wednesday, they don't get the reward for the prompt return.......but if they don't bring it back on Wednesday, I will call home to find out where it is. I might have to make a couple of phone calls in the beginning of the year, but once things are rolling.....it is very, very rare!

I've been doing this system for years, so it is fairly well known amongst parents that it is part of how I run my classroom. That helps, too. Since I have been in the same building for 12 years, I have had many siblings through the years. That is also a plus, as those parents already look for the Weekly Progress Reports!
JKB is offline   Reply With Quote
JKB's Avatar
JKB JKB is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Blog Entries: 1
Senior Member

JKB
 
JKB's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Senior Member
I forgot to mention....
Old 08-09-2006, 09:20 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #10

I have a check off list that I mark when I collect them on Tuesday. Check Plus......it is there, signed, and on time. Check.....human error occurred and it was brought to me on Wednesday. Check Minus......I had to call home.

One thing I really accentuate is accountablity and responsbility. By keeping this check list, I can see who might forget too often, etc. We have a citizenship section on our report cards and one of the areas deals with being responsible. When I see that a child frequently fails to complete assignments on time, submit homework on time, etc., I take all that into consideration for their citizenship marks. (It isn't a letter grade, but instead it is a grid, with several different things such as: being cooperative, uses time wisely, etc. Teachers put a check mark in areas that need to improve.)

Also, I keep all of the signed slips from the parents. This way, when it is time for Parent Teacher Conferences, I have the documentation available showing that I kept them informed of their child's progress, if I should ever need it. (There was only ONE parent that ever tried to tell me that she had NO idea her son was missing work, had low scores, etc. I simply pulled out the file with her signed slips and asked her to verify that it was her signature. Of course, it was! That squelched the inference that she had NO idea very quickly!)

Some of the littlest things can mean so much! JKB


JKB is offline   Reply With Quote
KAN's Avatar
KAN KAN is offline
 
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 792
Senior Member

KAN
 
KAN's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 792
Senior Member
I also number the students
Old 08-10-2006, 06:24 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #11

and they use their numbers on their homework, tests etc and I can quickly put them in order and record their grades in my grade book or quickly identify anyone who did not hand it their work.

I also have a small file box with files labeled, To do today, Take Home, Read, File, Copy, Take to Office, Take to Meeting, etc. As I get things I need to copy I slip it in the file then when I have a chance I take the file to the copy room and take care of it. My system keeps me organized so I don't waste time looking for that paper that needed to go back to the office, etc.
KAN is offline   Reply With Quote
Niki's Avatar
Niki Niki is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 663
Senior Member

Niki
 
Niki's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 663
Senior Member
daily papers
Old 08-13-2006, 11:23 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #12

JKB,
What do you do with papers that need to go home that day? For example field trip remiders, a note from the principal etc. Do you just pass these out or wait and pass them out with your weekly progress report? I'm just asking because I like your idea and I'm thinking of using it! Thanks,
Niki
Niki is offline   Reply With Quote
JKB's Avatar
JKB JKB is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Blog Entries: 1
Senior Member

JKB
 
JKB's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Senior Member
Niki
Old 08-13-2006, 08:05 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #13

In terms of daily papers.......it all depends if something is "time sensitive" or not. First of all, our principal sends out a weekly newsletter with all the students and it is distributed on Mondays.....I just include it in the weekly Progress Report.

Sometimes, we will get flyers relating to community activities, etc., such as sign up for Soccer on such and such a date. Those usually come out 4-6 weeks in advance, so I just include them in the next progress report, too. For example, if I get them on a Wednesday, I will put them in the following Monday's Progress Report.

Once in awhile, things have to go home on a day other than a Monday. For example, last year, our Parent Teacher Conference slips were to be sent home on a specific day-Wednesday of that week. In that case, I just wrote a note in my "Messages" and announced that they would be sent home on Wednesday and please watch for them.

Upon occaision, we will get a note in the morning, that needs to go home that day, such as "Reminder-Tomorrow is Picture Day". Those notes will go home on the day specified. Typically, these notes are reminder notes and they are about things that have been announced several times before the reminders.

If I have to pass something out on a day, other than a Monday, I will call one person from each group to get enough for their group, after they get their backpacks and are seated. Then, the children just put them in their backpacks at that time. This way, they are less likely to tuck them away in their desks and forget about them.

Overall, I've found that more notes get home using this system and parents feel more informed. I've been doing it for years and it works well for me.

Hope this gives you some ideas! Have a great year! JKB
JKB is offline   Reply With Quote
Niki's Avatar
Niki Niki is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 663
Senior Member

Niki
 
Niki's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 663
Senior Member
Thanks!
Old 08-14-2006, 06:54 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #14

JKB,

Thanks, that helped! I just have one more question. Do you have an example of the progress report you send home? If not do worry about it. Thanks again for the great idea!!!!

Niki
Niki is offline   Reply With Quote
JKB
Old 08-14-2006, 07:29 PM
This message has been deleted by JKB. Reason: Oops.....I made a mistake on the attachment...will try again!
JKB's Avatar
JKB JKB is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Blog Entries: 1
Senior Member

JKB
 
JKB's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Senior Member
Niki
Old 08-14-2006, 07:36 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #15

Whoever said "If at first you don't succeed-try, try again!" must have been thinking of me.....

I just tried to attach a sample Progress Report..one that I saved on my computer from last year, but I made a mistake when I was attaching it.....sooooooo...I'm trying again!

Assuming that I get it right this time.....hope this is helpful!

JKB
Attached Files
File Type: doc ProgressReport3.doc (42.0 KB, 281 views)
JKB is offline   Reply With Quote
JKB's Avatar
JKB JKB is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Blog Entries: 1
Senior Member

JKB
 
JKB's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,024
Senior Member
Hooray! It worked!
Old 08-14-2006, 07:37 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #16

I'm happy to say that it worked that time! Hope it helps! JKB
JKB is offline   Reply With Quote
Niki's Avatar
Niki Niki is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 663
Senior Member

Niki
 
Niki's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 663
Senior Member
Jkb
Old 08-14-2006, 08:39 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #17

Thanks! That is very helpful! I'll let you know how it goes in a couple of weeks!
We don't start till the 5th of September.

-Niki
Niki is offline   Reply With Quote

Join the conversation! Post as a guest or become a member today. New members welcome!

Reply

 

>
ARCHIVE
Thread Tools




Sign Up Now

Sign Up FREE | ProTeacher Help | BusyBoard

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 09:36 PM.


Copyright © 2019 ProTeacher®
For individual use only. Do not copy, reproduce or transmit.
source: www.proteacher.net