Monday, August 3, 2015


Like many teachers, I am a list maker.  I love making lists, especially "to do lists". However, I am what you would call an "over eager/overly ambitious" list maker.  When I make a "to do" list, I put every task I can think of on them.  Case in point, my spring break to do list. 

There was NO way I could have ever accomplished all of the things on my list of spring break.  No way.  My "to do" lists tend to be overly ambitious, and are never ever completed because I always put anything and everything I would like to accomplish on them.  

This summer, I transitioned to a Day Designer planner.  One of the things that I love about my Day Designer is that each day has a "top three" box.  This box is meant for the three most important jobs/tasks of the day.  It has made me incredibly more productive at home, because it has made me really reevaluate what I could realistic accomplish each day.  

Like most of you, I've been working in my classroom lately. I don't know about you, but sitting up my classroom can be quite overwhelming and there are many times where I feel like I'm not getting anywhere. Mainly because I'm walking around from task to task without a sense of purpose and never really accomplishing anything. 

This summer, I decided to implement the "daily top three" concept while working in my classroom, and it's been amazing!

Every day that I'm in the classroom, I create a "top three" list. I make the three jobs/goals realistic to accomplish, and I can only tackle a new task, one not on the list, if the other three are completed. 

This was my "top three" from my last classroom work session. 
1. Print, copy, and stuff my homeroom's welcome back letters. 
2. Arrange student desks into tables. 
3. Unpack, purge, and organize my personal office supplies. 

In about two and half hours, I completed my "top three" and I was able to add another task to my list, organizing my "I Can" Statements.  Here's some proof of my productivity!

I've only been in my classroom about three times this summer, never for a full day, and I've already feel that that having a "daily top three" has made me so much more productive and purposeful than in previous years! 

I plan to continue using the daily "top three" once school begins, because I love it SO much. 
I created a free printable this evening to use the rest of the summer and for the upcoming school year.  If you'd like to download my template, you can download it from Google Drive {here}

Once I pick up my desk calendar from our union rep, I might start putting my daily "top three" there instead.  You could also put your daily "top three" on a post it, notepad, phone, computer, etc. 

If you found using a "Daily Top Three" list helpful, I'd love to hear from you in the comments!

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