About a year ago, I ordered my very first Erin Condren teacher lesson planner after years of drooling over Erin Condren life planners. I posted a review of it when I first got it and when I first started using it, and now that the school year is almost over(!!!!), I thought I would post a review of it after using it for a long time. For those of you who don’t want to read a post, a pros-cons list is at the bottom.
My Erin Condren lesson planner is an extension of me. If I go anywhere, my planner is usually with me. It is unusual to see me walking to a meeting without my planner in hand. So many people comment on it, and I’ve convinced colleagues and teacher friends to buy their own for this coming school year. Today, I’m going to talk about the parts of the planner that are, in my opinion, most important and most used.
The most difficult part about buying my planner was deciding what my cover should be. You get to pick from many different designs, including what the personalization will be on the front. If you know me, you know that I love a good monogram. For the sake of teaching, though, I just went with my name and my favorite color: pink.
The cover is a hardy plastic. If you look closely in this picture, you can see that the corners have started to curl. But after 10+ months of being dragged around, that isn’t surprising. The binding (which isn’t in this picture) is a solid metal. I haven’t had a single issue with pages coming out, getting stuck, or anything like that.
The monthly calendar sections are so ridiculously important. This is where my personal life and my teaching life collide. Testing days, half-days, exams, field trips, award days, and more fill these pages. And, just as important, each monthly calendar has 2 lined pages for note taking immediately after it! I use that for meeting notes, to-do lists, and brainstorming. But, as you might be able to see, I also have doctor’s appointments and other notes to myself on here. Teaching might be the largest part of my life, but it sure isn’t the only one.
Also, see the stickers? Those come with the planner! I’ll admit that I didn’t use as many of them as I thought that I would, but I have a feeling that will be different next year.
This is the section of the planner devoted to where the actual lessons go. This is a week at a glance, and each row is a different day. (This particular example was a 4-day week, hence the empty last row.) Each column is a different block. Since we’re on block scheduling – 4 blocks a day, 90 minutes each – and there are 7 columns, I use 2 columns for each block and only one for my planning period.
This gives me space to write down the individual activities for each block as well as the objectives. This way, I can immediately see what it is I’m doing (and why) without memorizing everything. I also like to add in Post-It notes of reminders and to-do lists.
Erin Condren Review
So this is a glance at my planner, why I love it, and how I use it. Let’s break it down into a simple pros-cons list for those of you who aren’t fully convinced.
What do you think? Do you share my opinion?