Batch Working to Save Teachers Hours Planning & Prepping

Batch Working to Save Teachers Time Planning

If you want to spend less time working and be more productive & efficient with the time you have, then batch working is for you!

Batch working has been used by entrepreneurs and business professionals for years! I first learned about batching from this Jenna Kutcher podcast episode. I was instantly intrigued and started listening to other podcasts and reading books about batch working and productivity. My intention was to use batching for TpT/ business related tasks... but then I realized how amazing it was in the classroom! I started implementing simple batching strategies and shaved hours off the time I spent planning & prepping before and after school each week!

Note: This post has Amazon affiliate links. I personally purchased all of the linked materials for my classroom and they've been great! I was not given the materials nor am I paid by the companies for promoting them. I simply get a few cents from Amazon if you purchase them through my links.

So... what is batch working & why does it work?
Batch working is a process for managing time efficiently by completing similar tasks during scheduled chunks of time. With batch working, you avoid switching back and forth between different tasks and get tasks done weeks (and sometimes months) in advance! Research shows that multi-tasking just doesn't work and isn't productive! Focusing on one task at a time (AKA batching!) is how our brains work best!

Here's a simple example for teachers:
Task: Making copies without batch working:

  • You have a variety of copies to make each week (math, reading, morning work, homework, etc.)
  • You go to the copy machine multiple times a week (or even just multiple times a month) to make different copies. You spend a few minutes walking to the copy room. Then spend a few minutes in line waiting for the copier to be free. Once your copies are finished, you spend a few more minutes chatting with a colleague. That's probably about 8-10 minutes spent not even actually making copies... EVERY SINGLE TIME you go to the copy room. If you go to the copy machine multiple times a week or month, think of all the time you're wasting!

Task: Making copies with batch working:
  • You still have a variety of copies you need each week/ month.
  • You plan & organize what copies you'll need for the next 2 to 4 weeks. You schedule a chunk of time to get all of the copies completed. You might schedule a chunk of time for reading copies for the month, a chunk of time for morning work copies for the month, etc. 
  • You will get all of your copies done for the next 2 to 4 weeks in only a few trips to the copy room, which will save you SO MUCH TIME!
What are some tips for batch working?

  • Make a list of all of the tasks you need to complete each week & month
  • Group similar tasks together. I group copies together, computer tasks (like finding new ideas on Pinterest or making new PowerPoint slides for morning meeting) together, prepping physical materials (laminating and velcroing) together, etc. 
  • Create a schedule & routine for when you will batch different tasks. 

Batch Working to Save Teachers Time Planning

  • Set batch working time limits for yourself. If you schedule an hour to make copies, stick to that! Giving yourself a time limit and training yourself to stick to it will help you to work quicker & efficiently with the time you have. Timers and alarms can help you stay on track and not spend more time on a task than you had planned too!

What tasks can I batch work?

  • Making copies
  • Writing & creating lessons
  • Paperwork / IEPs
  • Filing papers
  • Communicating with families/ emails
  • Prepping materials
  • Looking for resources / ideas 
  • Cleaning/ organizing your classroom 

Batch Working to Save Teachers Time Planning

I'd love to hear if you have tried batch working and how it works for you! Leave a comment here, send me an email or connect with me on social media!