September 12, 2011

The Way I Plan & Organize


I have had several emails and comments about my planning notebook that I have shown in a few pictures..

I have emailed several people more information and I have promised a few others that I would eventually blog about it.. so here we go!

There really is NOTHING special about my planning and the way I organize my lessons- but I LOVE to read and see how others do it.. so, I do want to share. The way I do it is simple.. and EASY!


This is my school binder. Inside is everything I need. Copies of notes I send home, schedules, notes from parents, contact sheets for each child, lesson plans, newsletters.. a little of everything. The only thing I don’t keep in here but honestly I should.. are my grades.

This binder stays open on my desk everyday. I bring it home if I want to work on lesson plans or usually on Thursday nights so I can type my newsletter.

003        004

I have to mention that I am not required to write detailed lesson plans. I have taught in schools before where you had to list procedures, benchmark numbers, intervention strategies, etc..  It’s wonderful and truly a blessing to write lesson plans MY way!

The first picture above shows my top sheet of my weekly lesson plans. Its pretty much an overview of the week.

The second picture shows what my daily sheets look like. Even when I had to write detailed lesson plans I would then write down in a list form what I needed to do each day. I can just keep up with it better when I have one page per day.


I also keep copies of my weekly newsletter in my binder. It helps to be able to look back and see everything at once. I also keep last year’s newsletters in a folder tucked in the back so I can refer back to them when I need to.


This bucket only comes home with me usually over the weekend.. Sometimes, I get spunky and get things organized and planned on Thursday nights. But, most of the time I never do my lesson plans until Sunday afternoon/night.

So, what’s in this bucket??

  • My binder
  • My planner (it actually goes everywhere with me)
  • File folders with work I will need for the upcoming week.
  • Leftover work that we did get around to doing.
  • Teacher’s editions, books, etc..  (I try really hard not to bring teacher’s editions home because they are so big and bulky. I try and do that part of my lesson planning at school- OR I will bring home a student book since its so much smaller!


Here are the folders I brought home this week..

  • The dark green one is MICE- that will be next week’s theme unit.
  • Short a folder
  • 5th week of school folder

I also have a folder that stays in this bucket that says “Papers to Copy” When I am planning everything I pull the papers I need to make copies of and put them in there. Then when I am finished making copies I put the empty file folder back in the bucket for next week.

I put everything I need in a stack for each day, paperclip it together and label it with the day of the week.


I use one of those plastic 6 drawer carts for each day of the week. In the bottom drawer I keep extra work.

Every Monday I pull the papers out of the bucket and put them in the correct drawers. Monday is the first drawer, Tuesday is the second drawer, etc..

{Yes, I need some labels… just haven’t gotten around to making any!}

At the end of each day- I pull out any leftover papers or work we did not get to and put it in the bottom drawer or if is something that HAS to be done- I put it in the next day’s drawer.


On Friday afternoon when I am gathering up the stuff for the “bucket” I pull those papers out of the bottom drawer- the “extra” work stuff.. and bring it home. I try and use those papers for homework for the next week or morning work, etc..


Here are some of the books I brought home this weekend.. an art project book, my math teacher’s edition. It’s pretty small so I don’t mind wagging it home! And we have these AMAZING student phonetic readers by Sing, Spell, Read and I brought the short a one home to help me plan.


I am really lucky that I have a place to do my school work. I almost always plan in the same place…on my office floor. Under my work table I keep this bucket- it has everything I need and is handy so I don’t have to keep getting up to get something.


I also keep a chart tablet, sentence strips and a few pieces of poster board at my house all the time. It helps that I can plan out the daily charts I need at home.

Hope your week is starting off great..

I did want to mention that Scholastic Book Orders has  the Pete the Cat book and CD for $7.00 this month.. I am hoping to use some bonus points to get multiple copies {or a class set..}. I don’t need multiple copies of the CD but they would make great little gifts for my students.



  1. Thanks for sharing! I am an organization junkie and it is always fun to see how other people do it!

    ❤ Karen
    Flamingo Fabulous in Second Grade

  2. I love seeing how others do their thing :) Thanks for sharing!


  3. Is that an Erin Condren planner I spy there? I am toying with buying one next do you like it? Thanks for sharing!

  4. Love your plans, I pinned them and am going to make my own! What font did you use on your daily plan sheets? It's cute!

  5. I am an organizing junkie! Thanks for sharing your ideas.

  6. Thanks for taking the time to post the pictures and share! I have a pre-planning form, write weekly lessons on a two-page spread, and organize themes in weekly folders. But, I am really drawn to the idea of a daily planning page!

    Have a great week!

  7. WOW you really are very organized. I love this blog!! I also wanted to tell you that TEACHERSFIRST has recommended that my fun interactive site be used in the K-1 classroom. I do hope you can use it.!



  8. Thanks for sharing! I love your ideas!! This is random, but where did you get that worksheet with the numbers? (one less....) This would be perfect for my group! Thanks!

  9. I LOVE your ideas. You are so organized!! Thank you for sharing!

  10. I love the way you plan. I have to get that organized.

    Your binder reminds me of mine. It is almost identical to when I used to teach Gen Ed. I had to alter it a bit when I switched to ELL with multiple groups and grade levels.

    you've inspired me to post about mine. Maybe I'll get to it later this week.

    Ms. M
    Ms.M's Blog
    A Teacher's Plan

  11. Love your binder.

    I have nominated your blog for the Versatile Blogger Award.

    More details are available at my blog.

    Thanks for all you do.

    ❤Vintage Teacher
    Vintage Teacher

  12. Can you share what font you used for your daily planning sheets? I agree with Mrs. Wyand, it's so cute!

  13. Hi! I really love your blog. Reading it inspired me to create my own lesson plan template. Can you post or send me your template so I can tweak it and make it work with my schedule? Thanks for sharing all of your great ideas!

  14. Wow - thanks for sharing! I absolutely love your weekly and daily planning sheets. I am definitely going to copy and tweek it to work for me!! I love it.

    Mrs. Peterson's Room

  15. I love your post. Thanks so much for sharing--like you I love reading how others do it and it seems like I can always grab an idea or two off of others. For those wondering about the font-is it Comic Sans (or something with "Comic" in it--it is a common font available on Word). Thanks again. I look forward to exploring your blog.