I love reading tips from teachers and learning more about what other teachers do in their classrooms, so I was super excited this month to link up with Mrs. McClain for her blog hop to share and learn some things that we teachers “oughta know about!”
Today I am going to share some tips on organizing classroom volunteers. I finally have a system for myself now where I don’t feel like I am wondering, “what will they do?” or frantically trying to find those copies I need while the volunteer (and my class!) are waiting on me.
I now have a system for organizing clerical work as well as small group work for volunteers that will work with students. It has been amazing for me and I hope you can find some of these tips useful too!
I loved my system for clerical work, and it was working great for myself and my classroom assistant, but a bigger problem for me was organizing everything for my parent volunteers. I wanted to use them not just for clerical work, but for small groups and activities as well. Yet I did NOT want to be worrying the day of about what they were going to do, or be spending time gathering the materials. So I developed the monthly “volunteer box” that literally has made my life so much easier!
At the beginning of the month, I look at our big themes and topics and I gather games, books, activities, etc. (many of which I already have) that relate to and enrich what we are learning in class. I make all the copies (or have them in my clerical bins for helpers to make!) and clip them together and add them to the volunteer bin!
These are activities and assignments that do not have to be done in a specific order or on a certain day, and are not activities that I would feel stressed about if the students did not complete them. Rather, they are small group activities that support our classroom learning in simple, fun ways that volunteers feel comfortable leading. Perhaps they are cutting and pasting numbers, or ABC order. Maybe they are sorting sounds or working on a seasonal project. It will of course depend on the grade you teach or time of year.
For more great ideas and tips, check out the links to these fantastic teachers’ blogs: