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March 12, 2014

I Will Not Take Away Your Notebook, I Promise!

I admit I did write about ditching your notebook awhile back. But I’m here to say my intent is NOT to rip your notebook out of your hands. Just like if you love your planner, we only have to make your tool work for you.

Meet Sam, an inclusion specialist in Washington, D.C. She is in a committed relationship with her black and white composition book. We do not want to mess with this; we want to enhance it.

Sam really likes being able to journal in her notebook, so let’s figure out how to include all the elements of a great organization system, too. Sam chose to order her teacher tools chronologically within her notebook.

Let’s take a peek through its pages.

Comprehensive Calendar: Sam prints her Google calendar in the monthly view and pastes it into her notebook.

And here is her Upcoming To-Do List. Since this tool is more static, Sam glued it inside the front cover.

And then Sam prepares her Weekly Worksheet. One innovation that we really like is how Sam’s plan for the week includes a snapshot of her teaching objectives, combined with her to-do’s. This gives Sam a snapshot of her teaching plan (note: these are not her lessons plans, those are kept on Google Drive), to help her remember which materials to prepare and when!

Sam’s Thought Catchers and Meeting Notes are handwritten in the pages that follow for the week. She reviews them each week and captures any action steps.

When the week is done, Sam simply starts a new section.

Sam’s composition notebook planner is a wonderful example of how you can add some minor enhancements to a tool you already have a strong and consistent habit of using. You can make the system work for you.

See, I didn’t take your notebook away!

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