Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Tips and Tricks: Time-Saving Tips

Teacher Professional Development week is here! And I'm tired. Haha. It's 8:50pm and I think I'm going to go to bed after I finish this blog post....

Really, I think I'm anxious. I thought I would feel fine, but all of a sudden I feel like I have a million things to do and I just don't wanna do them. 

Last year I worked so hard, running at 100 mph from August to June. It was exhausting. I have this fear that things will be the same again...and I have to keep reminding myself that it's not going to be like last year...RELAX!
How do you manage the craziness of life and teaching? Here's a few things that I do to cut corners or keep on track and try to simplify mundane tasks:

1. Jump in the shower the night before.
*Why? You can save yourself 10-15 minutes in the morning!

2. Pick out what you are going to wear the night before.
*Why? Timesaver in the morning, and who wants to make decisions when your brain is still sleeping? You can get up and not think about it!

3. Pack your lunch at the beginning of the week.
*Why? It is one less thing to think about. I bring a bag of lunch foods on Monday to school and store it in my closet or refrigerator. No need to worry EVERY night about lunch!

4. Do NOT wash your hair everyday! 
*Why? Time saver, plus your hair does not need it! Check out my blog posts under the tag "hair" for more details!

5. Do a little bit, everyday, so the weekend isn't filled with chores.
*Why? It's overwhelming to clean all day! Choose to do one thing a day during the week after school. Day 1: Clean the bathroom. Day 2: Pay bills. Day 3: Vacuum.  OR set a timer for 15 minutes and clean whatever you can for that long and call it a day!

6. Slow cook meals!
*Why? LESS time standing cooking, and the food is ready when you get home!

7. Simplify breakfast.
*Why? You need breakfast, but not a grand sit-at-the-table meal. I eat in the car, so I choose to eat simple things like oatmeal in a cup, or bagels...things that are easy to make in the morning, but still healthy (oatmeal is filling!)

8. Make routines.
*Why? So you begin to do things automatically and do not have to spend time searching for things. For example--my room keys go in the same place in my purse, and the same place when I'm at school (in my pocket, ALWAYS). No wasted time looking for stuff!

9. Designate time for emails.
*Why? Emails can suck you in...before you know it you've been sitting there for an hour going back and forth with people. Set a time limit and then close the computer and enjoy the few hours in the evening you get at home.

10. Make lists, and cross things off that list.
*Why? You get more things done when you can remember what you need to get done! You don't have to spend time trying to remember anything.

BONUS TIP: For all the teachers out there--I have typed out agenda for what I am doing everyday. Yes, it takes me time to type it out and print it, but last year I took notes on this sheet and I'm so grateful I did! As I plan for this school year, I can look and see my notes that say "need more time for this activity," or "don't do this activity again!" or "fix these problems on the test." It's a great time saver when planning for the following year!

Any tips you can add? Comment below!

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