There are several things I do at the beginning of the year that saves me quite a bit of time during the year so I thought I would share.
- Create skeleton sub plans. These sub plans have all of our times and subjects on them as well as any pertinent information. That way when I need a sub in the room all I do is plug in the specific information and presto - sub plans are done. Here is an example. These also come in handy in case you wake up super sick, which I have tried, at least you can email this to the school secretary.
- Write a Dear Substitute Letter. I have students with special needs in my room as well as kids that need extra care. At the beginning of the year I write a brief letter to my subs explaining a little bit about my kids and their needs, without breaking confidentiality of ourse, then I have it to give to each new sub. Here is an example letter.
- Lessonplanner. I do not buy a lesson plan book because I end up spending a ton of time writing everything in it. Instead I have tables set up and I make my own. Every year I just have to tweak the times and change the subjects around, voila, my very own neat lesson planner. As the year progresses I will also type in when some kids get pulled out, band lessons, etc.
- Set up a parent email group. I use this parent group all of the time and never have to worry about not including all of my parents.
- Use Numbers instead of Names (on the boring stuff). My students are all assigned numbers for things like their take home envelopes, their book boxes, and files that keep on them. That way I don't have to print out new name stickers year after year, they simply get a number assigned to this more boring stuff.
There are many more tips but these are the ones I always get done right away. Happy year to you.