California Educator

September 2014

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CTA & You Update 3 members won declutter makeovers! Did they clean up their act? I N S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 3 we featured Corning Elementary Teachers Association member Steve Dillon getting a "declutter makeover" from personal orga- nizer and CTA member Tammy Duggan. We offered a similar opportunity in a "declutter" contest, providing each of three winners with a $25 gift card for supplies, Duggan's book The Uncluttered Teacher, and time with Duggan. At long last, we reveal the winners: Michele Paskow, Mercedes Jackson and Rosser Panggat. "All teachers are wonderful problem solvers, but they can't solve their clutter problem for two reasons," says Duggan. "One, not trusting that they can let go of things and still be ready to handle what comes their way. (It is OK not to keep everything 'just in case'!) Two, they don't make staying on top of the constant flow of papers a priority, thinking they will deal with it later." Here's how Michele, Mercedes and Rosser cleaned up their act. Tammy says: Michele's biggest issue was paper management and filing. We talked about grouping her incoming papers into main categories to allow her easy retrieval when she needed to locate a resource or a contact number. She collects a lot of articles for her classes, so we set up a system where she dates them. This allows her to see how long she's had something and to judge if it can be replaced with a more updated article. Michele says: This was simply amazing! In going through all of the stacks of papers accumulated on my desk, I found the Q&A with Tammy in the September 2013 CTA magazine! I now have three simple files that help streamline, organize and keep track of the materials for my two different classes. I go through mail right away every day and don't let it pile up anywhere. And I loved Tammy's reassurance that "being organized does not mean being perfect." That's a big relief! It's all an ongoing process. Having a better organized desk is a huge help in getting work done and feeling less overwhelmed! "Choose me!" wrote MICHELE PASKOW in her entry. The part-time lecturer and member of the California Faculty Association, CSU Northridge, added, "I could really use the help." 52

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