Monday, July 18, 2011

Looking to Track your Time?

With the onset of accountability, some librarians have asked, "how can I track what I do and document everything that I handle in my library?"   Well, adding time tracking to your day is just one more task in your otherwise busy schedule.  However, if you'd like to do this for a week or a month, to visibly document where your time is spent, then I would suggest the free tool:   Tracking your instructional hours might be interesting to view reports and see where disparities may lie. 
On, one can define "tasks" "projects" and more to be able to estimate the time spent.  At the end of the month it will aggregate the time you have devoted to both bigger "projects" and smaller "tasks" within those projects.   (Ignore the costs variable and opt not to show that on your reports.)    You could label a project as "Inquiry" units and then define the tasks as sub-steps of the Inquiry Cycle:  Wonder, Investigate, Synthesize, and Express.  There is a spot where you can note anything you'd like to track such as ah-ha moments, great student quotes, and more.
Or, if you wanted your myhours account to be focused on educational accountability, you might want to have an account for instruction.  There you could define "projects"  as a curriculum project, or a grade level, and then track the amount of instruction you had spent at each grade level, or classroom. 
See some of the samples below to demonstrate how this could be used.  Why not spend some time this summer familiarizing yourself with this tool, in case you find a vital use in September.  New York teachers or librarians, may wish to define the "projects" as the three areas of the NYS SLMPE (School Library Media Program Evaluation) adding tasks for each line item.  This way you could analyze where your time is being spent in relation to the three focus areas.  see:

This tool could be used to help build a portfolio of instruction.  Are you ready to compile your portfolio of instructional efficacy?  This would only track time and learning objectives, not achievement.   Student Achievement needs to be documented by "evidence" rather than time on task.   (See previous & future blog postings on assessment.)

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