10 time management tips for secondary sector

Secondary supply teachers are needed more than ever, but pressures of the pandemic mean extra tasks and demands on an already busy workload. So here we have put together some time management tips to keep you on top of things:

  1. Set clear goals
    It’s easy to fall into the into daily routines without evaluating key learning objectives.
  2. Plan your time
    With clear goals, you set the foundation for organising yourself for the day, allocate time to assignments.
  3. Learn to say no
    Don’t feel you need to take on everything that is given to you as a secondary school teacher. Consider your priorities and how a task might or might not contribute towards your goals, it’s ok to say no.
  4. Be smart about lesson planning
    A lot of secondary school teachers complain about the amount of time they spend planning their lessons. While it’s good to plan your lessons, spending hours upon hours planning a 30-minute lesson, and then doing that day after day can really sap the life out of any teacher.
  5. Be smart about marking
    The other time-consuming activity for secondary school teachers is the marking of homework and assignments. Unfortunately, there isn’t much about marking that is enjoyable, and the best thing to do is to be smart about it.
  6. Be smart with technology tools
    There are plenty of tech tools out there that can lighten your burden. Look into using Google Forms and their add-ons to help with homework and marking. There are plenty of powerpoint templates to help with presentations for secondary school teaching.
  7. Eliminate time-wasters
    What do you waste time on each day? Is it browsing on eBay for things you don’t need? Is it checking Facebook updates, looking at Instagram photos, or watching cute YouTube videos of cats? Or is it getting involved in unproductive chats and email chains that cause nothing but frustration?
  8. Apply the Two-Minute Rule
    In David Allen’s book ‘Getting Things Done’, he proposes applying the two-minute rule to everything we do, i.e. if it takes less than two minutes to complete, then get it done now. It would take more than two minutes if you were to come back to do it later.
  9. Respond to emails and online groups (e.g. WhatsApp, Ning, Google groups) straight away; dealing with them gives more headspace
  10. Allocate time for yourself
    All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Allow yourself time to relax, time to exercise and time to sleep. Keep a check on your work-life balance and engage in activities that nourish your body, your mind and your soul. And remember that a happy teacher will inspire happy students.