Each year, one of the highlights of my summer is printing off my Teacher Binder for the new year! I love the crisp new, blank pages and filling in the dates of meetings, etc.
My Teacher Binder is my everything... it is my calendar for both my school and personal life, meetings, my lesson plan book, my gradebook, my to-do lists, and my notes for everything! If I lose this planner, I am totally sunk! I know a lot of people like to use digital resources for planning out their lives, but I get too scattered for that. I need the tactile-ness of writing it into my agenda, having it on my desk at all times and seeing what all I have going on that day/week/month.
(For previous posts about my Teacher Binder: 2012-13, 2013-14, 2014-15)
To be honest, I was so pleased with the 2014-15 binder, that I just updated the dates and the subjects I'll be teaching, so if you are interested in the details or downloading my binder, please see the 2014-15 post above!
I did add a pacing calendar to the front of the binder, before my lesson plans. I haven't starting using this year, but I really like the way it turned out:
But the BEST change this year was the binding! In the past, I've tried several things, with varying degrees of success. I love the look of the spiral binding that you can have done at Staples, but since I use my Teacher Binder for my gradebook, that wasn't an option since I wanted to be able to add pages easily. I've tried 3-ring binders, but those don't allow you to fold them back for easy note-taking or for a smaller foot-print on your desk. I've used the Mead Flex Binder, which is supposedly a mix between spiral and 3-ring, but pages did not turn easily and it was annoying to add gradebook pages, one ring at a time. So, what to do?!?!?
This year, while having my Teacher Binder printed at Staples (I wanted thicker paper than I had at home), I was browsing around and found the ARC system. The ARC system is a disc-bound system that I think I will really like! Staples had a cute poly black & white cover for $2.49 and I got a set of 1" disc for $1.99. The most expensive part of the system is the hole punch and my Staples was out (and I didn't want to drive across town to the other ones), so I ordered a hole punch on Amazon. So far, I really love it! The pages turn smoothly on the discs and it is a breeze to add, remove, and move around pages in the binder. I'm curious to see how well this system wears over the year, especially in terms of taking my binder back and forth from home to school.
Have you used the ARC system? What are your thoughts?