Monday, July 8, 2013

Made it Monday/Optimum Organization Double Take!

It's July and in exactly one month - it will be my first day of school.  Vacation, like always, has flown by.  I'm going to have to start getting my "Back to School" to do list looked at.


Last week, I finally finished putting together my Lesson Plan book for 2013-2014.  It's been a bit of a work in progress for me.  My school requires that we have our weekly plans looked at by an administrator.  Plus, the plans have to fit a certain format and has to fit MY criteria as well.

I'm pretty proud to show off my finished product - especially on a Made it Monday and Optimum Organization.  I know that if I didn't have my Lesson Plan book, I'd never get anything done!  During the school year, if I have something important that I can't lose, I always tuck it into my plan book.

I printed out the cover that I designed, all my printed pages and took it to Office Max for double sided printing and binding.  The binding only cost $4!  What a deal!  I had to pay about $12 for the double sided printing that I did on my pages.  If my school was open, I could have saved that money... but I wanted to get it finished.

(Psst!  If you like the covers - they are for sale at my Teacher's Pay Teachers store!)

I used post it sticky labels to break up the sections for easy tabbing.  I added the Notes section after some debating.  I figure I always need some space to jot down ideas.

Calendar is courtesy of the fabulous Kindergarten Works!  Because I am cheap - the copies came out a little light.  I had to write over some of the areas so when I doubled sided copied, they would show up.

Our admins sometimes have difficulty finding the right sections, so I added in this helpful cover to my weekly plans.  With the tab, there shouldn't be any problems locating my current plans.

This is how I created my weekly plans to match the specific requests of our district.  They want that Checking for Understanding section and it helps that I added in all the strategies that they would like us to use.

This is what the weekly plans look like, a little closer.  I have this weekly plan issue - the days HAVE to go across the page and the plans go down the page.  I've rejected many a plan book that lists the days down the side instead of across the top.

Yeah, I have issues!

I had to squish my Social Studies section, but I think it will do.  I forgot to mention earlier that they are available for $1.00 at my TPT Store.  (It took me forever to get this plan right.  The $1 might make me feel better for the angry hours I spent glaring at my computer screen ;) )

To keep my place, I added in a ribbon!  I had this fun monkey pattern lying around, so I  used it.

I used sticky dots to attach the ribbon to the inside back cover of my planner.  I almost did it backwards the first time and had to think about how the ribbon would curl over the pages!

At Office Max, they add the clear cover and thick black cover in with your binding.  I added about ten pages of blank copy paper to the end of my book as my Notes section.

Overall - I'm SO happy with my book.  Last year, I printed the pages out on a weekly basis and then taped them into a blank planner.  It wasn't the greatest idea because it was a pain in the butt every week to tape in my plan book pages.  I think that this solution will work much better this year!


  1. I absolutely love your lesson planning template! Is it listed on I'd love to have a copy! Thank you so much!

    1. Hi! I do - I forgot to include that, but here's the link!

  2. I wanted to add ribbon to my student's notebooks and was dreading gluing them in, thanks for the idea of using the dots!!

    1. Thanks! It was nice to use the glue dots and not have to fight with my hot glue gun!

  3. I am a first year teacher and this is exactly what I have been looking for!! I have been searching for a planner that will help me stay as organized as possible and this definitely is a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Good luck with your first year! :) A lot of planners are great, but I found you spend too much time customizing them. This should be easier for me this year - I hope!

  4. Love this! I am seeing so many teacher planners being made and I am definitely thinking of getting on that train! Yours came out looking AWESOME!

    Reaching for the TOP!

  5. This looks amazing! I know it will make your year more organized :) Thanks for linking up with us.

    Fun in Room 4B

  6. I'm loving those hall passes -- I'm totally making some just like that! (I can't see myself doing a whole HP theme, but still so cool!) Thanks for sharing! :)


    The Absolutely True Blog of an Almost Teacher

  7. Is there a book or document that explains your CFU resources? I want a little more information about some of them.

    I used your plan book as a template because, like you, I am very particular. Thanks for sharing your creation.

    Follow Dava Smith English Teacher on BlogLovin’

    1. Can you also provide a link for the Kindergarten Works calendar? I am not sure where to find it.

    2. Hi Dava -

      The CFU (Check for Understanding) is listed at the bottom of the first page. They came from Vicki Alterwitz and the training that our district sent us all to this year!

      The Kindergarten Works Calendar is found here -

  8. Can you please explain the CFU or be more specific about how to implement them? I love your planning sheet but not sure I know what some of the CFU's are. Thanks!


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