#003: Time Management for Teachers: How to NOT Work ALL the Time

Imagine having your grading and planning done on a regular basis so that you can leave work at work instead of taking it home.

You know what it's usually like... grading papers at the dinner table, while falling asleep on the sofa, etc. I know not taking work home seems like a pipe dream. Don't worry, I have a plan. Shocking, right?!

Click here to listen to the podcast.

First off, you need and deserve a break. Teachers are some of the hardest working people I know. I'm just gonna put it out there and tell you the truth. If you aren't giving yourself a mental and physical break every day and week, you are wearing yourself out. I know that's not a newsflash, but it needs to be said out loud. We all need to admit it. It's not a sustainable life.

In fact, when we get the mental and physical rest we need daily and weekly, we're more productive, happier and more focused at school and at home. I know taking a break seems counterproductive when you have a lot to get done. But, it's...

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#002: Simplifying Healthy Meals: Menu Planning for Busy Teachers

Today is all about menu planning for efficiency, saving money and time and for better health. Now let me just set the stage for you for a minute. If you've ever stood in front of an open fridge and wondered what's for dinner [or you're sick to death of sandwiches for lunch] this episode is for you.

You can listen to this episode here.

It doesn't matter what you do for a living, but as teachers, I know we live life at 100mph in the classroom and at the end of the day, we're TIRED! It's hard to come home and have to feed a family or even just yourself. If you have a spouse that does all the cooking... go thank them. Go make them a drink! You are blessed!

For the rest of us, I'm here with Lisa Seigle from A Menu for You. Today, she's going to teach us about menu planning and how it can solve your what she calls your "Dinner Dilemma" so meal times are one less stress in your teacher life. 

Lisa is a wife, a mom and an almost empty nester. She's a home cook who took her love of...

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How to Get Your Principal to [Truly] Understand Your Schedule

time management Sep 26, 2018

“Everything seems so important that I can’t say no to my principal. But, I literally can’t do one more thing. There just isn’t enough time in my day. I’m exhausted and stressed out.” That’s what a client told me last week (and it’s only September).

I was working with a teacher who felt like her administrator wasn’t understanding that there simply isn’t an extra second left in her schedule. It’s not a new struggle. We’re all trying our hardest to meet the demands on our time and still give our best to our students. There is simply not enough time in the day to do everything that gets thrown on our plates.

Do you ever feel like your admin, parents or even your own family don’t fully understand how hard you work as a teacher?

Does it seem like everyone thinks you should help them out or volunteer because you get off work at 3:00? You know the drill… “You’re just a teacher. Working until...

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Teacher Time Saver: Before and After School Routines {Free Checklist}

Routines are time savers. They us create good habits and be more efficient.

Starting off our day feeling together and ending on the right foot makes all the difference in getting and staying organized.

As teachers, we often live and work at 100 mph. By the end of our school day, we are left feeling worn to the bone. It's so easy to just pack up a few things and head home. However, leaving items to be put away in the morning or prep for tomorrow undone until that morning is like leaving the dinner dishes in the sink over night. It sets us up for a hurried morning where we start out feeling behind.

Take 30 minutes to tidy up, decompress and get set for tomorrow. Create a checklist of items you want to take care of each day for your shutdown routine. Then, create a morning routine to get you going. It will change your whole perspective and set you up for success each day.

Here's mine. 


Check mailbox. Quick hellos. Hydrate, pray, organize all the materials I will need for...

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Virtual Teacher Assistants: Teacher Helping Teachers

time management Nov 22, 2017

Happy Wednesday!

It's not often that i blog about the business side of my business, but I just have to say... a little VA (Virtual Assistant) help sometimes is such a blessing. Thank you Rahul for all the times you step in to help so I can work on something else. 

A little help, please!

As teachers, we are used to doing everything ourselves. Which is a lot like starting a business. There isn't anyone else to do the work. I've always thought that teachers should have a little bit of VA time.

Way back when...

We used to have teacher assistants in our classrooms or on our teams to take on some of the work. Few schools invest in that kind of help anyone. It's just not in our ever shrinking budgets. So, we rely on volunteers. Thankfully, many of us have wonderful volunteer help in our schools, but just as many teachers and schools don't have that luxury. 

Think about starting a business.

So teachers. If you are looking for a business to start, this is it. Start a teacher...

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Thriving Mode: How I Quit Surviving and Started Thriving

Survival Mode is for the Birds

I got so tired of survival mode, so I chose a new way to be.  I call it Thriving Mode. It's all about investing in systems to make your life run smoothly. Can you say auto pilot? There are many things we do that need to become habits so we can put them on auto pilot. Why do we train our students, but don't train ourselves? It's time to lead by example.

Auto Pilot

So, the first question is... What can go on auto pilot, and what can't? I'm so glad you asked!

School arrival time is on auto pilot.

Just do it, I told myself. I trained myself in the new habit of getting to school 1 hour early. I say HABIT intentionally. A habit is automatic, no thinking required. This became my best work time- uninterrupted, focused planning time.

The 2 Minute Tidy

I train students in the art of the 2 Minute Tidy. At the end of the school day, I leave 2 minutes to clean up. Set a timer for 2 minutes. Then, everyone works as fast as they can to clean up everything...

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How to Take Back Your Planning Time

Now that school is under way in many places, the overwhelm can start to set in. Overcome the overwhelm. Take back your planning time before things get out of control. 

Getting in all of the planning, staying fresh in our teaching and managing the grading are 3 of the most time consuming, stress producing and valuable aspects of the teaching profession - other than the actual teaching.   =)  


So how do we overcome the overwhelm that comes with managing these 3 aspects of our day?

Like so many things, the best solution takes an investment of time up front but pays big all year: curriculum mapping. I know. It's a huge job. That's probably why we avoid it. But.... it will make your planning and decision making so much easier all year. 

Having a fully integrated curriculum map will free you up to be creative, have fun with your teaching and try some new things. You'll also have more time for your friends and family because you'll be leaving school at...

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Conquering Back-to-School Like a Boss

Happy Wednesday Teacher Friends,

It's really August! What?! I know! How fast summer is going. 

Back-to-school madness is here for many and coming soon for the rest of us. Staying organized is key to success in being and feeling ready for students to walk in the door.

Here's my Back-to-School Checklist to get you going at school this year in a snap. Get it here. You'll look like an organizing rock star and start the year ahead of the game (as in less stress and more joy) Win! 

Want to do a customized checklist? Got you covered! There's a blank one you can fill in yourself as well. Grab it! 

Go win the back-to-school prep battle.  Hope it's a great school year!

Teach joyfully,


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Conquering Your Inbox: Getting to Zero

Conquering your inbox may seem like a pipe dream, but it's totally do-able.

Remember when "You've got mail" was a good thing?! Not so much anymore.

Is your inbox stressing you out? Are you drowning in emails? Before getting your classroom ready, get your inbox under control.

First of all, how many inboxes do you have?

Decide how you plan to keep tabs on them- when and how often. Consolidate what you can and get rid of any extra email addresses you don't really use anymore.

Next, deal with your email.

Choose a set amount of time to deal with the backlog every day until your inbox is to 0. What?! Zero? That's not possible, right?! Wrong. Totally possible and do-able.

Check your email a couple times a day. That means quickly flip through it and deal with anything that is URGENT. Leave the rest.

Once a day, set aside time to deal with your email.

This is when you will do something with every NEW email for that day- read, file, respond, delete, something to get it taken care of and out...

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Get More Done: The Cure for Your "To Do" List Troubles

Is your To Do List overwhelming you?

As a teacher and a mom of 5 kids, I get it. If you are like me, your "To Do" list is long and never ending. It can be overwhelming after awhile to even look at it. And.. getting all those things done - forget it, right?!

Well, here's the cure.

Get more accomplished each and every day with this simple fix.

  • Get my Free Daily To Do List

  • Turn your long list into tasks on your calendar. Give everything a tentative date.

  • Then, take 5 minutes to make a small list for the next day each night before you go to bed.

  • Put on one cleaning chore and 6 other items on your list, no more. Each item should be a specific, detailed, "micro task" (think bite-sized).

For example: If I put "make phone calls" on my list or "call Doctor", it might happen. If I put "Call Dr. Russell- RE: appoint. for Bob's knee (phone number)" on my list, it will happen. Why? I made it easily do-able in the midst of a busy day.

Get my Free printable Daily To Do List to get...

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