I am a greater in making life easier if I can, why reinvent the wheel?
At the SENCO accreditation course we were discussing provision maps. How did we all do them? We shared ideas. One school had a one page provision map that wouldn’t take hours to do or review. It took me about 20 minutes to make one listing all of the things that we do for the children, from Quality First Teaching, through pencil grips and referrals to the Ed Psych right through to EHCPs with allocated 1-1 hours.
It is amazing what all children are offered, or is available for them if they need it. It will be easy to use highlighters – red for autumn, yellow for spring, green for summer and blue for all year to mark on what we are doing. It is so simple that actually we could do one for every child if we wanted. Not only that it makes my life even simpler as teachers can do it and due to the wonders of Word we can highlight on an electronic copy and only print out the ones that need sending off to people who demand pieces of paper.
Another thing I have discovered is the scan function on the photocopier. It’s a bit like magic. I put my papers in the top and it scans them (double-sided if I want) and sends them as pdfs to my computer before I even get back to my desk. I’ve discovered that if I scan all the reports that I get from professionals about the children straight into their files I have a record, they don’t get lost within the file and I don’t have to keep ferreting around in the filing cabinet to check for a date or recommendation when I need to fill in a form for another professional. All password protected so that they’re still secure, easy.
There are a couple of other things that I wonder how I managed without. One is Dropbox – that wonderful online, ethereal space where I can store my resources, essays for my course, policies I’m working on etc. that I easily access from anywhere so that I don’t need to worry about losing/ forgetting my memory stick. The other is nothing really to do with school – Parcel Genie – a wonderful app that enables me to send small, cheap presents with a personalised note without ever having to leave my lounge. An easy way to say thank you or good luck without missing the post or even knowing where someone lives, all you need is a mobile phone number.
I’m sure lots have people have lots of brilliant ideas that make life easier, we just need to find enough time to talk to each other so that we can share them.