So as a specials “teacher” I’ve had trouble over the past few years finding a plan book that works well for me. I’ve used a different format each year. I’ve searched every plan book that I could find online, I searched through TPT til I couldn’t take it anymore. I just never found anything that is designed for specials teachers who see up to 10 classes a day. In my building we have 12 specials periods each day. There’s just no way to make it work well on 8 x 10 paper. I tried instead of seeing the whole week at once to make it so I could see just one day at a time but that made it hard to track if I had to make changes and was way more paper than I wanted to use so I went searching online again. Third year in a row.
I came across this post online DIY Post-It Note Plan Book and just loved the idea. I’m not into typing my plans bc if changes need to be made I had to white out and write over or type and reprint. If I use pencil, which I usually do, I have to erase and rewrite, sometimes several days worth of plans. Yeah I know I could try not to plan so far ahead but I like to do that I feel better knowing where I’m going. The solution Post-Its, reading this blog post I wondered how I had never thought of it before. I can just move post-its if I need to rearrange lessons bc of an unexpected snow day or a fire drill or who knows what. I can take the post-its next year and use them again just transfer them to a new planner. I knew this was the perfect plan for me. 🙂
So the search began for a notebook that would work for me, no standard sized notebook for a specials teacher, just not big enough. I found one or two oversized spirals I thought might work and then had a spark, sketchbooks come on large sizes. I found an 11 x 14 sketchbook at Walmart and Joann’s. I had a 50% off coupon for Joann’s so off I went. Then post-its and tabs in bulk when I made my next trip to Sam’s Club. Gathered all of my supplies and got started.
- 11 x 14 sketchbook
- scrapbook paper in multiple colors for cover
- glue stick (I used two actually one regular old glue stick, and one that was meant for crafts)
- post-it tabs
- ruler (again I used two, my regular ruler and my sewing/quilting ruler that is 18 inches long)
- letters for the cover
Before starting I sat down with the binder I used last year to organize all of my plans, rosters, etc to list the sections I’d need. Next I counted out the pages for each section and placed a large tab to mark that section. Then I started measuring out the spaces in my plan section. I was worried about the time it would take to get that section done, and while it was a bit time-consuming it went faster than I thought when I realized I could trace each new page from the page before rather than remeasure each page. Same thing my roster section.
Measuring out the rows
Completed pages, man that’s a lot of sections 😉
First week, you can see at the top I have a to do list, may as well use the extra space 🙂
a complete week, each grade level has a color, purple is my lunch period in case I need to make copies or something then, dark blue are my plan times, the larger orange post-its are to-be-filled, I will either be on recess/lunch duty or working with TEAM time group in which case I’ll need to post-its there to plan
Roster page, I think completing 25 of these took longer than the 40 weeks of plan. I have a space for student name, username, and password thought that would be good as I am the technology teacher LOL, the other side of the notebook is a blank page I can use for seating charts
Since I used a binder last year I had some sections that were fine hole punched and wasn’t sure the best way to put them in this book at first. I could use one page for each page in the packets or I could make a folder out of two sketchbook pages. I went with the folder idea.
Finally it was time to work on the cover. I wanted it to go with my classroom theme of superheroes so I but a “superman” shape. I glued a section of posterboard to the cover then added the decor and letters. I used my school colors.
it’s shiny bc I covered it with contact paper to keep it nice all year 🙂
You can see lots of tabs there on the right side those mark each section
- general information
- building map
- school wide expectations
- district calendar
- evacuation routes
- Rosters – one for each class
- plans – with a tab to move each week to the “current week”
- think sheets
- behavior sheets and office referrals
So this does leave me with section of blank pages at the back which will be great for meeting notes
I’m excited to use this new plan book this year. I’ve already started writing in plans for the first week or two, as a matter of fact I should go get to work on those again. 🙂