Optimum Organization - Student Organization
The two buildings that I have taught in both invested in student planners for every student. It is a spiral-bound calendar that closely resembles a lesson plan book. In the front, we have included the student handbook (school policies, dress code, school calendar, etc.). The following pages are weekly calendars. The days are across the top and the classes are down the left side. At the beginning of the year, I walk through the calendar pages with the students and have them write in no-school days, early dismissal days (you know, the fun stuff), open house, the first several PE days (so they can bring appropriate clothing), and anything else we currently have on the calendar.
On a daily basis, I have the students fill in their planners with the day's topics. Here is one that I just made up in a spreadsheet as an example since I don't have an old planner.
For those papers and things that I want them to keep in their desks because we use them as reference or we haven't finished discussing them, I have a color-coded system. Each student has red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple 2-pocket folders. I print out labels that has the students' names and subject area on them in the appropriate colors.
Now, this past year in the middle school, we tried putting their folders and everything else in a 3" binder. Same color-coding, but now the folders would travel with them. The thought was that they could always have what they needed in order to work on assignments during study hall or at home. However, about seventy-five percent of my students just crammed papers into their binders, not taking the time to put them in the appropriate folder, even with reminders. And they certainly weren't pulling out assignments during sixth-period study hall to work on them.
For next year, we are going to try going back to the individual, loose folders. They will be keeping them in their desks in their various classes, ie. keep their math folder in their math desk, science folder in their science desk, etc. Since we still switch classes every period, students will be carrying their pencils boxes, their planners, and one folder that will have take-home papers in the left pocket and to-do papers in the right pocket. Hopefully that will help them remember to check their folder during study hall to see if they have work. We'll see...
Posted by Diane R at 9:00 AM