Getting Ahead of the Game

Please note: This post includes Amazon Affiliate links. 
My first year of teaching, I literally lived and planned my lessons day-by-day. It was hard for me to think ahead and get ahead. I had concepts down like hey I think we’ll learn about verbs this week, but I had a hard time actually planning and preparing an entire day before that day actually came. {It wasn’t so much that I didn’t know what I was going to teach, it was more like I didn’t know what to do with all the materials/worksheets/activities that I was going to teach with.} My second year was about the same, because I started over in a new grade. Now that I am in my third year of teaching, I am STILL *trying* to get ahead of the game. I don’t know if it will ever truly happen, but I am determined!! This year has already been so much better. I’ve worked out a system that helps me get at least one week or more ahead and I love it, because I LOVE the feeling of being prepared!!! 
In the picture below, you will see that I have a file for every day of the week. 
In each file I put the activities/worksheets for that day.
I keep all my daily files really close, in fact they are right in my desk!!
 I have a {small} filing drawer that I seriously couldn’t live without.
I have separated the weeks by color, because I am such a visual person. Right now, I am on the blue week, so all of my activities/worksheets/lessons for this week are ready to go in the blue folders. I am also preparing for the red week and sometimes I put a few things in the purple week. Each Monday I try to get things ready for the next Monday, on Tuesday I try to get things ready for the next Tuesday, etc.  I love having everything ready to go and it makes me a much nicer teacher! 
I use these hanging file dividers to separate each week. 
I found them at OfficeMax {here} and I think they’re pretty awesome.
I realize that this system isn’t perfect and there are probably a gazillion ways to get organized, but this is how I get it done! It is so important to be prepared when you are a teacher. I find that when I am better prepared, then I have time to focus on the things that really matter!
Materials Needed:
Hanging File Folders – 3 different colors, 5 of each {click here}
Hanging File Folder Dividers, 3-Pack {click here}
Lots and LOTS of Paper Clips {click here}
File Tote {click here}
Also, with the election today, I have been reading this book to my students. 
They love hearing about our different presidents. Click {here} to check it out!!
How do you keep things organized in your classroom? Please share!!!

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