Would you call yourself an organized teacher? Do you want to become better organized?
Here's the what, why and how...
Many people think that being organized means being tidy, and it often is. But it’s actually your level of efficiency that defines how organized you are.
How easily can you consistently locate your pen, board marker or a student’s book? Where is that important paper when you need it? How do you manage emails?
Tidiness is nice, but it's the speed at which you can get hold of what you want when you need it that is the key to your effectiveness.
There’s a subtle, yet crucial, difference between telling yourself you “really must get organized” and deciding to do it. The former is usually a form of self reproach, the latter is a commitment. Deciding to be organized is the first step, but it depends on the degree to which you…
When someone says “Oh, I’m so disorganized”, then you can be sure they’ll stay that way until they choose to believe otherwise.
You won’t get organized unless you change the way you think. Do you actually believe you can be organized?
You certainly can be - it's a skill, and all skills are learnt and (can be imporved).
However disorganized you feel, you can improve. Whether you’d rate your current level of organization 0/10 or 9/10, there’s room for improvement. If you’re higher than 9, I’d love to know your secret. :) Wherever you’re at now, start getting organized.
Your classroom and desk have limited space. When you look at yours, how does it make you feel?
Organize your space so that you (a) enjoy being in it, and (b) can locate easily what you use regularly. In other words, create an environment that is as tidy as you want, but is as efficient as you can get. Purge the junk you don’t use. The Pareto Principle applies here -- lose it if you don’t use it.
Some teachers plan a term, some a week, some the night before. Whatever you do, aim to plan ‘pre-day’. This is obvious for lessons -- you were trained to do that at college -- but it’s just as important for Zone 2 time as a teacher.
When you feel organized is the time to establish this habit. When you’ve sorted your space and time, you will either consciously keep things that way or, subconsciously let things slip. Once you're organized, do you notice that your motivation and energy levels are higher? Make sure you know how to stay organized.
Remember -- bad habits are easy to start and hard to live with; good habits are hard to start and easy to live with.