Monday, May 16, 2011

Management Monday - Student Planners

I think it's very important to make sure students have a daily homework planner. In my class, this planner needs to be filled out each day in class (we do it together), checked and signed off by a parent/guardian each night, then returned for a teacher stamp each morning.This way, everyone's on the same page about what and when homework, projects, and notes are due.

I know you can buy fancy student planners, but I prefer to make my own.

First, I make a weekly template and include any homework that stays the same each week (my students always have to read 30 minutes, and always have to work on spelling). I can add my math homework or anything else that is due on the blank lines. I also personalize each day, making sure to add in vacation days. (This is very helpful because I don't feel like I have to send home reminder notes all the time.) I continue until I have a page for each week of the school year.

Here's my general template:
I always buy 1/2 inch binders from Costco (they come is a 6 pack for around $8 each). I like them because they're skinny enough that they don't take up much room in desks and fit well in backpacks.

And of course, you'll need a cute cover.
*Helpful hint - It does get time consuming for me to stamp everyone's planner everyday, but I feel it's important to do this otherwise students won't care if they get a parent signature or not. You can have a class secretary do this. I, personally, like to check to make sure everyone returned their homework each day, so I turn on CNN Student News (click here for information on downloading this free 10 minute news podcast) and stamp folders and check homework during this time.


Kristen said...

Hey Natalie! I really like how you set up this homework planner...I would like to try this next year. Thank you!!! :)
Ladybug's Teacher Files

Kristin Young said...

We have school purchased planners that we all have to use school-wide and I've recently discovered that Pandora {Kid's Radio station} keeps my kids working those few extra minutes that it takes to check planners...and receipt field trip money, and respond to parents, and make transportation changes and... ;)

Thanks for sharing!
Little Miss Glamour Goes to Kindergarten

Natalie Kay said...

Kristen, I'd glad you like it. If you end up making a cuter cover, you should definitely send it my way!! :)

M E Bush said...

Where do you find/create your cute fonts?

Ms. Draffkorn said...

This is a great idea. And thanks for the info on the CNN Student News! I will have to bookmark that for the future.

I played Pandora for my seventh/eighth graders that I taught in the long-term sub job I just finished up. I mostly played a Beatles station; my boys were really into it and I caught tons of kids singing along. :)

Magnificent Multiagers!

Cristina said...

Love your planner! I'm just wondering what program you used to make this wonderful template. I teach first graders and would love to implement this in my class next year however, i think i need to make the lines a little wider.

Beth said...

We also use school purchased planners and do the same thing as others mentioned. We check planners at the beginning of day so we can respond to any notes, gather notes for office and check homework. At the end of day we have to check them again and mark behavior. Great idea about the student cnn news! While we are checking planners our students are expected to do a morning message which works on the date, sentences that need to be corrected and a journal prompt. We then go over this together and have kids come up and correct it on the board. To keep them focused and responsible they never know when we will check it.


Sarah said...

I love this idea!! Thanks for sharing :)

thunder said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Courtney said...

I love the template. My district provides student planners. If I could, I would choose your method instead! Sometimes, simplicity is key.

Also, CNN Student News, I cannot wait to use that in my classroom. Often times, we are so busy teaching the past, we forget to keep them updated on current events!

Miss Ryan said...

Your Management Mondays are my favorite!!!


mfreeze said...

I love your homework planner page. I would love to use it but would need to change the "read for 30 minutes" to our specific reading assignment. Is there a way to edit the document in Google Docs? Thank you for sharing all of your wonderful ideas!

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Anonymous said...

Hi - I LOVE this homework planner there a way to edit it in Google Docs so that I can make a few changes to suit my needs? I TOTALLY appreciate you sharing this - I want to use it in my first grade clas this year! Thanks SO much!

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