Saturday, June 22, 2013

Optimum Organization...Teacher Planning Binder

I can't say enough how much I like enjoy LOVE organizing. I just sent a text yesterday to my teacher friend that said "I love organizing!"

The linky party Optimum Organization was just made for me!

My organizing tip for this week is how to create and organize a teacher planning binder. You can click on the picture below to get your own copy of my planning cover pages.
Here is the cover page to my teacher planning binder. Right now it's just in a page protector until I can get a binder that has a cover page slip. It's a lot harder to run errands with a 10 week old than I ever imagined.
Tip #1 - Get a binder with a cover page slip. This allows you and other teachers to know which binder and who's binder they are looking at or found if you tend to miss place things.

Tips #2 - Have your daily lesson plans as the first section in your binder.
I look at my lesson plans multiple times in one day. I find it is easiest to have my lesson plans in the front since that is what I use my binder for the most.

Here is what my lesson plan format looks like. And yes! Those are plans for the first week of school. Can you believe I already have the first two weeks planned out!

If you're like me you always write on your last copy of what seems like everything without even knowing it then this is the best teacher organizing tip I could ever give! This picture is my lesson plan template in a page protector.
Tip #3 -  Behind all your copies put a master/original copy in a page protector. This keeps you from writing on your last copy and then you know it's time to make more copies. This organizing tip has saved me many a times!

Tip #4 - Include any curriculum mapping in your teacher planning binder. That way when you are doing your lesson plans you have a guide right at your finger tips. Keep them both in the same place and it will save you time when planning.

Here is my curriculum mapping that I am currently working on. I have about the first 6 weeks finished. I'm going to work on the rest during school.
Tip #5 - Curriculum Mapping: I have included spaces for reading, spelling/phonics, math, writing, and science/social studies. I use this map to house any mini lesson, craftivity, or theme project for one week. By no means do I use everything on that page in one week. It is just a guide to help me plan my lessons. It just gives me some ideas.

Also in my planning binder, I include a copy of the first grade common core standards. Every once in a while I like to look over them to make sure that I am covering everything that I should be covering.

One of my teaching goals for the next school year is to stay in contact with parents more. To help with this goal is my next teaching tip.
Tip # 6 - Keep copies of all whole class parent letters in your teaching binder for easy access.
This will help you greatly from year to year. There is no reason to reinvent the wheel each year. Keep original copies of all your parent information letters to refer for years to come.
Below are some of the letters I have included in my planning binder.

Next I always keep my class lists at hand. This section also has parent contact info.

This part is where I keep my more formal guided reading plans. Below you will see what I use to plan out my guided reading groups. It is super simple.

My last section is where I keep all the original copies of my writing workshop resources pack. Since they are originals they are all in page protectors as well.
Yours in Teaching,


  1. Kelli I am your newest follower. I Popped over from the optimum organization linky and I'm glad I did. I found new ideas and ways to to tweak my old ways. Have a great summer.
    First Grade by the Sea

  2. Thanks so much for sharing your organizational binder. I just found your blog today through the Optimum Organization linky and am a new follower!

    Sarah @ Hoots N Hollers

  3. loved your binder. great ideas!

  4. Your binder looks great! I love the section of parent communication. It's great to have all of those letters in one place.

    Success in Second Grade

  5. What great tips! Thanks for sharing. I'm inspired to work on my binder for next year. I'm switching to a new position where I'll be our Intervention Coordinator and my groups will constantly be changing. I'm trying to figure out what my class list section will look like now. Thanks for getting my mind spinning.

    Surfing to Success

  6. Your binder is amazing! Thanks for linking up with us :)
    Fun in Room 4B

  7. I love the idea of having a binder with EVERYTHING there at my fingertips... you've inspired me to get working on mine! Thanks for sharing!

  8. Kells!! Whoa!! Seeing this blog makes me excited to get started on my binder! Love all your tips... great ideas!!

  9. Thanks for sharing your binder!! Do you have a copy of your lesson plan for purchase? I would love to get it!

    1. I can upload it to my tpt store. But I have yet to figure out how to make editable documents. If you know how let me know and i can make it editable for you!

    2. I can upload it to my tpt store. But I have yet to figure out how to make editable documents. If you know how let me know and i can make it editable for you!