Classroom Planning Toolkits
Planning time is quality time.
So, Classroom Toolkit's planning resources streamline that time.
Time spent in planning pays teachers back more time than they spend, in fact the payback multiplies.
This makes the investment in planning time more profitable than an investment in money markets or mutual funds.
Many teachers don't believe that they have enough free time to plan. The reverse is true…planning manufactures free time.
If teachers don't plan, they remain trapped in a a perpetual "gather enough activities for tomorrow" cycle.
Project management is one of the most important areas for reducing teacher stress and work overload.
What teachers need to know is the scope of work that they are being required to perform, and how unreasonable the expectations are.
The recent push for teachers to individualize instruction based upon high-stakes test objectives creates a "Labors of Hercules" level of difficulty.
In addition, focusing on individual test objectives is contrary to learning theory, contrary to how children learn, and contrary to common sense.
The use of thematic units, student-based projects, higher-order questioning, and the stimulation of Multiple Intelligences represent a sane and workable strategy for classroom instruction and management.
There must be 146 million lesson plans that can be found with any Internet search engine.
The quality of these varies...as does their suitability for the class that you teach.
What access to millions of lesson plans does not do is save you time.
Finding a plan for your specific subject and content needs, for the appropriate grade or ability level, that uses the materials and equipment that you have available…
- Takes more time than it takes to create the lesson plans yourself
- Or, it is easier to just follow along with suggestions from the Teachers Edition of the textbook
- You can use, then re-use the same modules
- Your colleagues, working on the same units can share their work so that you don't have so much to do on your own
Scheduling consists of more than posting an activity list for the week.
Scheduling also requires more than mapping a list of the high-stakes tests's objectives to each day's activities, then camping at the photocopy machine to print drill-and-practice classroom sets until your copy allotment for the month runs out.
Scheduling also means connecting prerequisite learning tasks with tasks that follow.
Scheduling means planning for the year and mapping out strategies.
The scheduling tools that you find here will help.
Finding other teachers who will share their work will also make you job easier.
Mapping your schedule for the year is the most important step that you can take to save time all year.
Although the decreased stress that you feel because you are planning minimizes your need for "Mental Health" days off, you may need to be away from your classroom from time to time.
If you needed to drive to school while battered by the symptoms of pneumonia or the flu (that you developed the night before) because you didn't leave current lesson plans; then you know the practical benefits of building and maintaining a Substitute Folder with alternate (generic) lesson plans.
We have suggestions for building this Substitute Folder. We also have suggestions for preparing for emergency delivery of these plans through E-mail, fax or Web site postings.