As I wrap up my sixteenth year of teaching, I have been reflecting on all the things I do to lower my stress level. Because teaching can be very stressful, as you well know.
“I’ll tackle that one later.”
And this list goes on and on.
To create my labels, I first thought of some categories that would cover all of the emails I tend to keep. IEPs and Parents came to mind first, as those are emails I haver to save for the entire school year. I decided to make labels for ELA and Math, as we tend to get assessment information and workshop emails I like to keep for those subject areas. Events is a good label for field trips, fundraisers, and assemblies. Students is a newer label I just created, as a place to store any Google docs my students share with me (in case I don’t have a chance to add them to my Drive at a particular time):
Once you click on the new label, you will find a pop-up screen where you can enter the label name. I write mine in all caps for a clean look that stands out in my inbox:
The label won’t be assigned a color unless you choose to add one. To do so, click on the right side of your new label and you will see an arrow and a menu appear. Choose Label Color:
You will see pre-selected label colors, as well as a place to add a custom color. I try to select some bright shades with a white font:
When you click on a label in your sidebar, you will find all the emails you’ve saved under that label. If you open a particular email, you will see your color-coded label at the top:
Color-coded, digital organization in Google is always a huge stress-relief for me. I keep my grade book online and sort all subjects by color (it automatically averages too, which is a HUGE timesaver):
I also color-code my subjects and display all of the important information for my students each day, from materials needed to the steps to take during a class. Not only does it help me know exactly what I am doing in a given lesson, but it also keeps my students on the same page (and there are no more questions about what they need or what we are doing next!):