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Time saving tips?

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by 02teach, Oct 8, 2007.

  1. Drowning - anyone got any good time management ideas.
    Marking, planning, reports, meetings, displays arghhhhhhh! Any quick tips
  2. Drowning - anyone got any good time management ideas.
    Marking, planning, reports, meetings, displays arghhhhhhh! Any quick tips
  3. For marking I would suggest peer assessment, going round during the lesson with the old red pen and doing the odd worksheet(until your marking is up to date). Also marking little and often works.

    Keep plans to a minimum, only include the bits you need to know in order to keep the lesson at a good standard. You may want to put your plans onto a computer format so you can adapt lessons easily (a real time-saver).

    I get in early to do my bits, I find I am much more fresh in the morning than after school and can push through work much more quickly.

  4. koali

    koali New commenter

    When marking I make up self adhesive labels (using the label function in Word) with brief descriptions of what I want to see for each level of attainment.
    I use a highlighter to colour what level I feel the work is at.(Next lesson,as a starter, pupils look at the level I gave their work and use the descriptor for the next level to write a sentence to say what they need to do to improve the standard of that sort of piece of work next time.
    You can't use it for all tasks and its better if the level descriptors are quite open, but it can be used to show target setting, and sometimes I give the pupils peer marking tasks using the same labels.
    It really cuts down on the repetition of comments that I used to have to write in pupil's books. Red pen is reduced to just underlining key issues and occasional individual comments.
    Feedback from pupils, parents and TA's has been really positive.
    It also really saves me time and i think that this makes it worth the expense of labels, although my dept usually buys them as this has become a method of standardising certain pieces of work across the dept.
  5. lord sutch

    lord sutch New commenter

    I was going to put similiar on. I have been out of teaching for 3 years and have gone back to it. In my last school, everything seemed to be OK, but now, I feel as though I am working none stop on a night. I can't get in early as me and the missus have had a second child, I need to leave at 4.00 on the dot, to assist with the childcare (no qualms there). I get 1.10 for lunch! So I am utilising that, but seem to be spending all night (up until at least 10.00) every night working. Its the F**£$"G A2!!!!! It just seems to take an age and a bit. I only need to plan 14 lessons a week, easy, but no. I am trying to make every lesson a belter, but I think I need to be a bit more realistic. Regards keeping plans to a minimum, I can't remember how. I like the idea of keeping it to a good standard, but I haven't taught for so long I can't remember how to keep it simple. Can anyone give me some more advice!
  6. Thanks very much - am making labels as we speak and have done a guide sheet for peer assessment ready for tomorrow. Feel better already!
  7. You shouldn't really be doing displays either so cross that one off the to do list!
  8. It seems anti-social but I just try to avoid chatting to people for too long! At my old school I used to chat for ages and then find I had to catch up on work later. Now I am HoD I just try to steer clear of gossiping sessions, although I am obviously polite! I have a quick break at lunch and say 'hi' to people and then I get on with my work.

    Also I heard a good tip the other day re meetings. When you go to speak to someone about something, say at the start 'I've only got x minutes to discuss this' and stick to it. Don't waffle on with small talk etc! It really does work! I hate sitting in meetings with everyone nattering on thinking - I could be home now!

  9. Well done for trying to make each lesson spectacular.
  10. Christopher  Curtis

    Christopher Curtis Occasional commenter

    1) Use checklists. I used to give my students a list of criteria and write at the bottom of their work V, H, M, L, W, N for each that they would then transfer to their criteria sheet. Here is an example, but who knows what will be done to the formatting?

    11 English Checklist 2003 - Unit One Name:...............................................

    18/2 27/5 18/3 25/2 1/4 29/4 ongoing 13/5

    Content personal imagin. Mede.
    TR ExamTR prac
    IR IR
    anllsis IR
    persu Exam
    IR Oral Oral
    Language analysis - - - - - - -

    Aptness of structure
    Selection of ideas
    Coherence & dev?t

    Expressiveness and Fluency
    Accuracy of language

    Spelling - -
    Grammar - -
    Punctuation - -
    Engagement w. aud. - - - - - - - - -



    V = Very High H = High M = Medium
    L = Low W = Very Low N = Not shown

    2) Use spreadsheets to calculate marks and keep records of comment.

    3) Do correction during useless meetings.

    4) Double up on classes; e.g., two year 7s, not a year 7 and a year 8, to save prep. Time.

    5) Schedule your spare periods; e.g.,

    My Timetable 10/2004 (Term 4 - 1.11.2004)

    Monday 1 Tuesday 1 Wed?day 1 Thursday 1 Friday 1 Monday 2 Tuesday 2 Wed?day 2 Thursday 2 Friday 2
    1 10 ENGL T8 11 ENGL G7 10 ENGL T8 9A0 ENGL T2 9A0 ENGL T2 10 ENGL T8 11 ENGL G7 10 ENGL T8 9A0 ENGL T2 9A0 ENGL T2
    2 10 PREP. & CORRECT. 11 ENGL G7 10 ENGL T8 9A0 ENGL T2 Reflection and Goals 10 PREP. & CORRECT. 11 ENGL G7 10 ENGL T8 9A0 ENGL T2 Reflection and Goals
    Lunch 1 Duty - West MAC Meetings Recess Duty - Rover Lunch 1 Duty - West MAC Meetings Recess Duty - Rover
    6) Correct in class.

    7) Be active in your union to get decent conditions; e.g., a maximum class teaching load of 16 hours 48 minutes (21 48-minute periods) at my last school and a maximum class size of 25 students (Victorian secondary schools for almost all of the past 30 years).
  11. Christopher  Curtis

    Christopher Curtis Occasional commenter

    8) Use comments databases for report writing.

    9) Code each comment so that the computer calculates the student?s level based on your choice of comments - with a manual override.

    10) Keep the same subjects and years for several years so that not every lesson is a new one.

    11) Don?t read government guff.

    12) Don?t sit around the staffroom using up all your spares complaining about how much work you have to do.
  12. <u>Christopher Curtis</u>
    " 7) Be active in your union to get decent conditions; e.g., a maximum class teaching load of 16 hours 48 minutes (21 48-minute periods) at my last school and a maximum class size of 25 students
    10) Keep the same subjects and years for several years so that not every lesson is a new one."

    Hi, are you HoD?
    I teach science in secondary; the general teaching load is 21 x 1hr lessons! (in a 25 hour week + 20&10 reg/tutor/assembly); and many classes are over 25, even in sci - other core subjects teach groups of up to 30. And I have little control over my classes & subjects.
    With the recent load of "government guff" our syllabus keeps changing, so we can't often teach the same thing next year.
    Sorry to stray off the topic, but teaching load is currently a pressing subject!
    And thanks for the constructive advice.

  13. dropje

    dropje New commenter

    As I teach each class once a week, I have the same Display up for each lesson with minor adjustments depending on what they have achieved each lesson. It saves me time anyway
  14. Christopher  Curtis

    Christopher Curtis Occasional commenter

    I am a retired teacher in Victoria, Australia. I have been an acting vice principal, a timetabler, a subject coordinator, a senior school coordinator, a daily organiser, a level coordinator and a teacher representative on several school councils. I was an English coordinator for about 19 years in three different schools. This meant a reduced teaching load. I received a five-period time allowance for this position in the last school in which I held it. That school had a 22-period maximum teaching load, so I taught 17 50-minute periods a week. I did not have a home group.
    Victorian teaching conditions are much better than those which apply in England, partly because the teachers union here has been much more militant in the past than English teachers unions seem to be today. A class of 25 students has been more or less the maximum in a secondary school in one way or another since the 1970s, initially in strongly union schools and then across the whole state. I have never had a class of 30 students in my life, and I started teaching in 1974, though there was one year, 1975, in which I had a one class over 25 and another, 1981, in which I had more than one class over 25. In 2005, my year 7 English classes were 14 and 16 students each.
    I understand that you have little control over your classes and subjects. My impression from reading this site is that English teachers are treated like wage slaves rather than professionals. Victorian schools have had a long tradition of running in accordance with the collegiate professional judgment of the teachers. This has been reduced in the last 15 years, but has not completely disappeared, though there are powerful forces at work trying to turn principals into tin-pot dictators.
    Just ignore government guff. When the Curriculum and Standards Framework was introduced here, I approached it as English coordinator with a view to protecting the teachers in my faculty from any increased workload and succeeded by interpreting it to mean that what we were already doing was, in 99 per cent of cases, just fine. When CSF II came out, I did not even read it.
    One problem with teachers is that, overall, they are not committed to their profession and thus they let political forces ride roughshod over them. Society may have reached such a stage of de-unionisation and self-centredness that the position is now beyond hope in both the short- and the mid-term, but you never give up hope in the long term.
    (I apologies for the removal of paragraphs, something which the TES site does to all my posts.)
  15. pomunder

    pomunder New commenter

    Chris, it's not like Oz in the UK, so your advice to just ignore it doesn't work. There's a level of paper work and inspection-led accountability in the UK, which just doesn't happen in Victoria. Your posts carry no weight in this respect, despite your obvious good intentions. Your last paragraph is spot-on, both with respect to the supine teaching force in Victoria, and the spineless AEU.
  16. Christopher  Curtis

    Christopher Curtis Occasional commenter

    I accept that the UK is in a far worse position than Victoria. I wonder how it go that way. Did teachers not resist when the madness began?
    Victoria is not alone in having a weak teacher workforce, though I must say that the AEU is no more and no less than its members. If the members were really dissatisfied with the current leadership, they would surely find somewhere in their 40,000(?)-membership an alternative, and I do not mean the leftovers form the Cold War still ranting and raving about capitalism.
    If you are asking me, which is not clear, I did not refer to a peer assessment guide, but to a marking guide which I use and which the students have a copy of. I gave it in the earlier post, though the setting out has been completely destroyed. I write Hs, Ms, Ls on my copy next to each criterion and at the bottom of the student?s work, which they then copy to their copy of the guide.
  17. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    I buy wine with screw tops, it saves time on Fridays when I get home from school!
  18. Now thats the sort of advice I need.
    Thanks Blazer!
    Any more tips like that would be great!!!
  19. Hi Chris,

    Do a google for basic html symbols, and put them into your replies to get paragraphs.
    If I replace the v-shaped parentheses with square ones,(because they just wouldn't comeout on here) ... you should be adding something like this [p]to the start of a paragraph, and [/p] to the end.

    [br][/br] are line breaks.
    And use the 'preview' pane to check it. :)
  20. Keep chocolate biscuits in your desk drawer so you can save on time spent going to the staff room ----- and stay off tes so you don't waste time reading all the amusing posts instead of working![​IMG]

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