Saturday, July 25, 2015

Teacher Recharge Challenge Week 3 {Time Saving Tips for Teachers, Reduce Stress, Get Organized, Prepare for the New Year}

The focus of this site is to help teachers organize and manage their classrooms. Taking some time during the school vacation to get organized at home can greatly reduce your stress level and make your school days much more relaxed. This series contains "challenges" you can do that will become teacher time savers during the school year.

Challenge #3: Get a Jump Start on the Holidays:

I realize it’s July and the holiday season seems so far away, but if you are like most teachers, that hectic holiday season comes at a time when you are already feeling more hectic than you would like. Many “teachery” things such as report cards, progress reports, end of term assessments, and parent teacher conferences also fall at that time of year. And let’s face it, the schedule often goes out the window with assemblies, concerts, and special programs and the kids tend to get a bit more “energetic.” It’s hard to fully enjoy the holiday season if you are juggling that all day and fighting crowds at malls and adding things to your to do list faster than you can cross them off.

That is why this week’s Teacher Recharge Challenge is focused on spending some time preparing for the holidays during the summer. While I don’t suggest putting up your Christmas tree this week, there are plenty of things you can do now to make the holiday season far less stressful and much more enjoyable to you as a teacher when the time comes.

Here are a few tips for planning ahead for the holidays:

  • Create updated mailing labels for your holiday cards. If you prefer to hand-write them, get envelopes and write all the addresses on the cards. If you send photoless cards, or if you like to use a picture taken during the summer months to could even get the cards 100% done and ready to drop in the mail.

  • Make a list of everyone you plan to buy a gift for and jot down some ideas for presents. Doing this now will enable you to find better deals and come up with more thoughtful gifts than a last minute gift card. 

  • Buy (and if you are feeling ambitious) and wrap as many gifts as you can at this time. If you don’t have holiday wrapping paper just buy a solid red, green, blue or a brown craft paper.

  • If you are hosting Thanksgiving you can explore recipes and create a shopping list. Store it digitally in your computer so you don’t lose it.

  • If you’re planning to have a holiday party you can make invitations, plan recipes and decor. 

  • Speaking of know all those Pinterest crafts that you pin and never make? Well, now is a great time to actually make one. 

  • If you give your colleagues or students a small holiday gift you can prepare those now as well.

Feel free to post pictures on social media as you complete the challenges. Use #CFCRechargeChallenge. Do you have any tips for ways to get ahead on the holiday craze? Add them in the comments below.

By the way, if you are not already subscribed to The Clutter-Free Classroom newsletter I encourage you sign up. Subscribers receive weekly tips for organizing and managing a classroom as well as exclusive free printables. You can sign up here.