Tuesday, July 14, 2009

What Will I Do with All of my Time?

Record-keeping. The average Montessori teacher spends 1-3 hours per school day record-keeping. This is why traditional schools teach to the average of the group, instead of to each child individually. IT'S JUST TOO HARD TO KEEP TRACK OF IT ALL!!!

Each M. teacher has his/her own way of keeping track of progress. Here's my system- although it works, it's quite tedious...
  1. Observe, give lessons, observe, give lessons...

  2. Jot down notes of each child's progress on class observation sheet

  3. At the end of each day, transfer notes onto 12 page master file for each child

  4. At conference time, use master file to compile progress report (takes approx. 1 hour per child)

I've been looking for a more professional and time effecient way to handle this task. Poof! A simple google search finds Montessori Records Express. I spend at least an hour staring at the computer screen in disbelief that this service has been out there and I haven't known about it! I spend another hour on a webinar with the founder of the service so I can learn every feature. It's hard to give up my old time-tested routine, but I'm sold.

With a few mouse clicks, every child's progress is recorded and monitored. I can see how many lessons Jimmy recieved in the month of May with one click! I can compare Timmy's abilities to that of the state standards to find out if he's on track with his peers in the public sect! I can make sure I'm giving equal lessons in Math, Language, Culture, Pracitical Life, and Sensorial! I should be this guy's spokesperson! This guy sent his kids to Montessori and was dumbfounded by the amount of time the teachers spent writing things down. So, he and his wife designed this computer program that keeps track of it all and it's made specifically for the Montessori curriculum. Jackpot!

I'll spend the month of August getting to know the system (by the pool?) so I'm ready for September. I'm so excited to implement this program into the classroom! Now I just have to keep those little fingers from pecking on the laptop! :)

Try it for yourself, here!

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