To plan or not to plan?

To plan or not to plan?
Well, what can I say? When I first got a job as an English teacher in my early 20s, I felt confident that even though I had little experience in teaching, I’d still do my best and make my dream come true. And I did. At the time, there were no other responsibilities apart from my teaching job and which restaurant to go to (not because of a lack of options!).
And when it came to teaching, my memory was like a snapshot tool that stored all the interesting and not so interesting details of the lesson in a little corner of my mind. And someone easily retrieved all those little details the minute I walked into my classroom the next day.

Jimmy had made two spelling mistakes last time and now insisted he didn’t? Hold your horses, Jimmy. I’ve got a snapshot of those two little mistakes in my mind. And what about you Jenny? We didn’t have exercise 4, on page 14 for today? Well, the snapshot tool says otherwise. And stop insisting that we’ve finished reading that article. Second paragraph, line 8 please. Start reading Jenny! It’s not time for your KitKat break yet!

Twenty years later, I have to admit that this snapshot tool is past its prime. Well, not totally, but you get the point. Having so many responsibilities at work and at home with my family, my time is limited and sometimes my memory needs some help retrieving those things that didn’t get stored in my mind.  When I’m at home, post-it notes on the fridge can do the job just fine and sometimes Siri comes to the rescue when I want a reminder set on my phone.

But what happens when you are at school and you have one class after the other, and you are no longer in your 20s with a snapshot tool in your brain? Well, there are some magic sheets of paper that are called planners. I use them very often, noting down what I taught and what assignments my students have for the next lesson. They are lifesavers! 
Dear snapshot tool, it was nice living with you for so long but now I need to take a break from the mental overload. Weekly planners it is for me then!
I’ve made a few planners using one of my favourite note-taking apps Goodnotes 5 (this is not sponsored of course, just my personal opinion) and I use them daily to write all the important and not so important things of a typical day at school. You can download them and some more here.


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