Systems Part 1

Credit: Mercedes Benz ad

I love systems. Plan and simple, I am a very systematic procedural person. I enjoy brainstorming about, creating, and modifying systems and procedures. I know that this falls under the left brain. As an art teacher and visual learner I’m sure that this is a bit surprising. If you’re at all interested in learning more about the hemispheres of the brain and how they function watch the video below.

How does this all fit into my teaching you ask? Well, as an instructor I am constantly writing and editing step-by-step instructions on how to complete a project. At times my instructions are more direct and other times they are much more vague and open to interpretation. It all depends on what stage of a project we are working on. At the beginning of say my Adobe Photoshop project, the instructions are direct and create a sort of scavenger hunt for students to follow. However, once they learn the program, they are free to explore and experiment with all of the knowledge gained during the introductory phase.

My systems can be broken down into paper and digital. In this post I am going to share my paper systems. Including my calendar and my camera check out. For the camera check out I prefer paper because I can take notes and keep track of everything happening in class. All of our cameras are numbered and for in class assignments I like to keep students using the same camera every class – it is a time saver when we start uploading files. You can download the pdf for yourself by clicking this link Cameracheckout.

Here is an example of my form in action:

The second form that I like to keep on paper is my calendar. I still try to enter appointments into my Google calendar but doing so isn’t always as fast as jotting it down on the run. So about twice a week I double check to make sure everything is appearing in both places. Here is the “cycle planner” (blank pdf download available here blankplanner) that I designed using Adobe Indesign. This also functions as a record of my lessons. I can quickly record anything from an absence to a request for materials. I also use this form to make quick notes about what happened in class and what will happen next class.

Along with a working example

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