Teachers never have enough time. We have curriculum to cover, skills to teach, reports to write and meetings to attend. The demands are endless, both in and outside the classroom.
10 ways to save time, both in and out of the classroom.
I’m sure you there are hundreds more so please share yours.
1. Don’t talk about how little time you have.
Use the time to do some of the things you don’t have time for.
2. Reduce meeting time.
Only meet if you have to. Start on time or have something to do while you wait. Keep it brief. Stay on topic. Don’t get sidetracked.
3. Set the timer.
When you feel overwhelmed by everything you need to do, set the timer for 15 minutes and start. You’ll be amazed how much you can get done. Do this once a day and see what you can achieve. Try it with your students too.
4. Talk less in the classroom.
Establish routines. Use signals. Trust your students, everything doesn’t have to be controlled by you. Scaffold independent learning so that students can get on with it.
5. Collaborate on a Google doc.
You don’t need to email documents back and forth. You don’t need to meet with the people. You don’t even need to be in the same place. Work together on the one doc. Use different colours to show who said what. Use it with students too.
6. Use Twitter.
If you need a resource, a video, an article, a song or a tool… someone else has found it already. Ask for help on twitter. Help others in the same way. There’s on tap support 24 hours a day.
7. Have small group discussions.
Give every student an opportunity to speak without having a whole class discussion. Move between the groups. Have groups share with the class only what was most interesting or most contentious.
8. Set up a class blog.
It’s an easy way to learn with your students. They can respond to questions, comment on each other’s presentations and have discussions, without taking up class time.
9. Manage your emails.
Set up class and parent distribution groups. Organise folders in your inbox so that you can easily file things you might need later. Act quickly on emails and delete when done.
Acknowledge that you are human and can’t always do everything. Decide what is urgent and what can wait. Accept that you aren’t ready for some things and will get to them when you are.
And if you have any spare time, watch some of these!
A horse walks into a bar. The bartender asks “Why the long face?”. The horse does not respond because it is a horse. It can neither speak nor understand English. It is confused by its surroundings and gallops out of the bar, knocking over a few tables.