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A teacher’s time in the classroom is their #1 resource. A teacher who cannot manage their time well is a teacher who will struggle day in and day out.
Even the best teachers struggle with time management, and oftentimes through no fault of their own. Sometimes the most thoughtfully planned out lessons simply go faster than the teacher anticipated. Sometimes an unexpected fire drill interrupts the students’ workflow and sends a lesson off-course. Sometimes teachers have one prep with fifteen students and another with thirty, which dramatically impacts the length of a lesson. Sometimes there’s something happening in the news that day that causes everyone to be distracted. Sometimes teachers just look out at the sea of faces before them in the classroom and realize that the kids are simply not paying attention anymore.
Oh, and that doesn’t even take into consideration that teachers are, in fact, human. (Shocking, I know!) Sometimes they don’t sleep well. Sometimes they’re distracted by events in their personal lives. Sometimes, like all humans, they forget things.
All teachers have been there. Many times. In fact, it’s probably more accurate to say this happens constantly.
In those moments, teachers have a choice. They can throw their hands up and give kids fifteen minutes to chat with each other, catch up on other work (valuable, sometimes), or put their heads down to take a quick cat nap (not recommended), or they can use those moments to teach something. Not something that the kids will be tested on. But something valuable just the same.
That is why I created the Oh Sh*t Toolkit: 51 Mini Lessons to Keep Students Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking Until the Bell Rings. To help teachers maximize this time in the classroom, those extra fifteen minutes, where even though your best laid plans might have gone awry, you’re still a kick ass teacher anyway.