Track your day

In a previous post, I wrote about how I am currently tracking the activities and work that occurs each day.

I started this task as I wanted to see what I was doing each day and where I was spending my time. Whilst I went into each day with a plan, I was noticing that the day rarely went to plan. I was frequently being interrupted from my work and wanted to see if there was any pattern or theme to these interruptions

Initially, I used a hard copy spiral notebook and would write down daily notes from meetings and conversations along with tasks that came up and I needed to complete. I liked its simplicity but as someone that uses a computer most of the time, I can usually type faster than I can write and found the process of writing slow and inefficient. I also didn’t like that I couldn’t ‘search’ my notebook. Finding previous notes meant flipping backward and forward between pages to find what I was looking for.

I have since moved on to digital format and am currently exploring Microsoft OneNote. I like the ‘notebook’ feel and the ability to create sections whilst having the freedom to move things around. I like that I can sync my notebook across my iPad, iPhone and computer and have my notes with me.

What it looks like

I’ve played a bit with the template I use to track my day, but my current format looks something like this.

The top of the page is dated – I’ve recently added in the term and week as part of the heading.I keep track of any CRTs we have in during the day and if the teacher they are replacing has APT.

At the beginning of the day, I track any CRTs we have in during the day and if the teacher they are replacing has APT. I keep track of any extra time I give to teachers to release them.

I also keep a note of any students I am checking in with for their behavior and the times I check in on them. I also keep a note of any students who are out of the yard for inappropriate behaviour.

Below here, I then track my work for the day. I keep a note of the start and end times and give each task a heading.

I highlight the heading with a colour depending on its context.

Underneath I then keep track of any notes.

I recently added in the ‘energy’ column as I wanted to see how I was feeling throughout the day. I currently give a score from 1-5 each time I start a task. A ‘3’ is average and on track. Anything higher and I’m on a roll. Below a 3 and I know my energy is fading.

I also added in the gratitude section as a way of keeping track of the great things that happen each day. It also serves as a good reminder at the end of the day to reflect on what’s happened and to find a highlight or something positive about each day.

Initially, I kept a section for each month and then used a page for each day. I then worked towards grouping my pages together in weeks.

I was grouping my notes by month but am thinking I might move towards having each term in a section and then group pages by each week.

Limitations

I do wish though that OneNote had a little bit more grunt at times. I would like if it could perform calculations from tables I insert (similar to a spreadsheet) or create graphs based on the data I enter.

Whilst it’s great at keeping notes from conversations, phone calls, meetings etc.. it’s also not really serving my purpose of knowing where my time goes each day. At the moment, I need to manually go through to add up the hours and collate the data.

Do you track your work? If so, how? Do you use any tools to support you to do this?

What patterns have you noticed as a result of tracking your work?

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