The stretch from Thanksgiving to Chrismas is bittersweet for me. I love the holidays, but I am always in a mad dash to exams and vacation. I don't know about you, but I need all the help I can get to save my sanity in the next couple weeks; This is why twenty-four teacher bloggers have gotten together to give you tips to save your sanity, some freebies, and a great giveaway.
Save Your Sanity: Plan Now
The biggest saver of my sanity during the holiday season is to sit down and plan all six classes for the last fifteen days of the semester. I know you are busy and some of you might only be staying a day or two ahead of your students this time of year, but invest the time now to save your sanity later.
It took me about two hours to plan our the last fifteen days before exams. That was simply finding the new ideas to add to the stand-by activities and writing the actual lesson plans. It seems like a lot of time with everything else going on in our lives, but once it is done, you can auto-pilot a lot until vacation.
The second part of my sanity-saving plan is to then print my lesson plans, pull EVERYTHING (every warm up, notes sheet, question, etc) I need to copy, schedule all the online assignments in Google Classroom, and head to the copy machine. This took about two planning periods to complete.
The first day I pulled everything and put a dot next to it on the printed lesson plan, so I knew I had it. This part didn't take too long since I did a lot of this while I was writing the lesson plans.
Then I sat down to schedule all my Google Classroom posts for the last fifteen days. It is nice to be able to post to all three of my English 11 classes at once. This probably took the longest of all the items in the second part of my plan, but it is so nice to have it all automated.
Lastly, I grabbed my lesson plan, the stack of items to copy, and some binder clips to head down to the copy room. I was totally that teacher running both machines at once, but I don't feel bad about in since not a single other teacher came in (they must not be on this sanity-saving plan).
This four-hour strategy will save your sanity.
This sanity-saving plan has made my week so much easier. I wasn't fighting the copy machine, running around trying to find the right handout, or worried when my youngest caused me to run late because she couldn't find the right shoes.
Now I can spend my evenings and weekends getting ready for and enjoying the holidays because I KNOW I am ready for students.
Even with all the planning in my sanity-saving plan, there might be a time when you are gone (those nasty winter colds) or when your best-laid plans go awry. I have a perfect solution for these moments:
This is series of questions for the informational article “One Bad Tweet can be Costly to a Student Athlete” by Gannett from December 30, 2014. It contains 11 questions connected to the Common Core Standards for informational reading at the secondary level.
It is the perfect item to add to your copy pile because it is a self-contained reading lesson good for one class period. It also makes a fabulous early finishers activity for those who get done before class is.
Be sure to grab One Bad Tweet today before the freebie goes away.
Now for the giveaway!
Today's prize is $5 to Starbucks, Post-Its, and a Desktop Weekly Planner
Be sure to check out all of the stores on sale on December 12th.
Be sure to visit The 12 of December Homepage
Today's Other Post from The Bespoke ELA Classroom