* O is for organized

calendar-660670_640Blogging A-Z: O is for organized, something I am not.  My last intern was an absolute whiz at organization.  Within 30 minutes of our first day of school, she had a perfectly organized, attractive binder and was reminding me of impending meetings.  She did it in such a sweet way, too.  Her: “Do you think it’s about time for us to go to our meeting?”  Me: “WHAT? What meeting?”  Her: “The staff meeting in the gym in 5 minutes.”   Me: “Oh, thank goodness you remembered!  Now where did I put that calendar?”  I always hope each year will be be my most organized ever.  Thanks to my intern, that year was!  I must say that she fell a bit short in organizing my filing cabinets (something she hinted about accomplishing) but I think she recognized a lost cause when she saw it.  After she left, I reverted to my usual chaos.

My path to organization always appears reasonable, on the surface.  I want a single calendar which shows all my meetings for a month at a time.  But a single calendar is fraught with difficulties.  How do I connect that calendar with all the “memos to self” jotted on my lesson plans?  I buy an expensive planner in August with high hopes and abundant room for my notes about meetings, phone calls to make, and materials to prepare.  As I’m teaching, I jot those notes on my lesson plans.  I get an email about a meeting and add that to a corner of my handy lesson plans.  Sadly, the calendar and lesson plans have now taken different paths.  I barely have time to jot notes once, much less record them a second time in a planner I will forget to read.  Then there’s my handwriting, which is a curse for a perfectionist.  As soon as I make the first ugly entry in my pristine planner, I don’t want to use that planner anymore.  I know that’s crazy but it’s true.  Have you seen how gorgeous those things are, with their padded and zippered cases?  After buying two more calendars in September which are similarly marred, I start printing my own calendar pages because I’ve spent too much on this already.  And those printables never look right, so I simply scribble all over my lesson plans, which are not meant to be pretty.  So who knew that the most important meeting for that month was written sideways in a section on place value materials?  It’s not like I really FORGET the meetings, I just have a vague idea of when they will occur.  Really vague.

I have a blogging friend who is writing a book on getting and staying organized.  Dear friend, please finish that book before I forget that we are meeting for tea this weekend!  We are meeting, right?

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