As a teacher, finding systems that worked for me and kept my classroom running smoothly was always a goal of mine. One such system was my 'Credit Card Magnets.'
Credit card magnets were created by sticking an adhesive magnet onto the back of a plastic card (looked like a plain credit card). I would then stick a label on the front of the card so I could write a name or item there. Cards could easily be reused each year by just sticking a new label over the old one.
Ways I used them:
1. List one student's name on each card.
- Use these for lunch count in the morning.
- Ask students to place their cards in a line on the board if they need to use the bathroom. As they return, students take their name down and the next person knows automatically that it's their turn to go.
- This also works for students who need to come see the teacher for help on an assignment (ie- a writing project). When their name is at the top of the list on the board, they know it's their turn to come see you.
- Use the name cards to keep track of who has turned in an item or done a certain task. Place all the name cards on the board. When a task is done or paper turned in, have the student take their card off the board and place it in a container. You will be able to see who's still working with just a quick glance at the board.
2. Write all the items that might possibly go home on the cards (one item on each card). As you fill out the homework board at the end of the day, place the cards for the items needed on the board. For example, if a math assignment required the textbook and workbook to go home, those two cards would go on the board. By the time you're done, you will have a list of all the items that students need to place in their bags.
3. If your schedule changes day-to-day, you could write each part of the day on one card. Every morning, just put the cards in the order of that day's schedule.
BONUS: I use one card for my laundry. I can never seem to remember when I place an item in the washer that needs to be air-dried. I place a card on the door of the washer (my door is metal) that says 'STOP- DON'T DRY' to remind myself that there is something in that load that I need to pull out before placing the clothes in the dryer.
Have you used this trick before? Do you have another trick that worked well for you? Do share!