Sunday, January 5, 2014

How I survived my first semester teaching pt2

View part 1 of this post to read my top 10 tips from my first semester teaching!

Here are the top 8 forms and documents I used to help me through my first semester as a special education teacher. I hope some of them can be helpful to you!

  • Communication log
    • FREEBIE!
    • This log saved my life when I wasn't able to remember when or what I talked about with certain parents.  I know that sounds bad, but when you are trying to remember a million things and so many people telling you things you need to write it down.  I hope this communication log will be beneficial to you and your sanity! 
  • Class lists (3 versions)
    • FREEBIE!
    • These little lists have saved my life! I laminate them and use them as checklists, roll call, to-do lists, or pass them out to staff and parents who need a list of students. 
  • Return forms reminder (English & Spanish)
    • FREEBIE!
    • I have found this to be the most efficient way to send home forms to parents.  I attach this sheet to the front of the papers that need to be returned and I have had about 90% return rate since I started using this idea. 
  • Paperwork thank you
    • After I receive the completed and signed paperwork, I am sure to send a thank you note back home just to show my appreciation for doing what I ask. 

    • When you're in a bind and you need to jot down the behavior of a student during an incident, pull out this handy ABC chart and fill it out.  Now you don't have to remember every detail because you've already documented it while it was happening or immediately after the incident. I made several copies and keep the blanks in a binder. At the end of the day, I input them into our data program.  It takes the guess work out of things and eases my stress level because I don't have to remember so much info. 

    • This has to be one of my most used forms.  I only have 7 students on my caseload, but I fill out every space on this form for ARD/IEP meetings.  It keeps me from missing deadlines, loosing papers or contacting the wrong people. 

View part 1 of this post to read my top 10 tips from my first semester teaching!