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  • GTD for Scouts

    I am a Merit Badge instructor for my son's Boy Scout troop. I'm going to present a "Time Management" unit to the Scout's to fulfill a Merit Badge requirement. The method presented in the scout handbook is a disaster.

    Any suggestions on presenting valuable ideas on time/organization/GTD/Prioritization etc. to 11-14 year old boys? Their attention spans are limited and my goal is to be able to get just a couple good ideas,concepts,tricks or whatever that will stick...Creative ideas are welcome and appreciated!!!!!!!!! I expect to have them for about 30 minutes. Thanks!

  • #2
    The biggest, most valuable, single thing that had the most immediate impact was doing a Mind Sweep and putting it all in one In-Box (regularly). Don't know how applicable this would be to kids but doing that alone had me sold on GTD.

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    • #3
      Maybe Jason Womack will see your question and reply. He used it with high school students when he was teaching. He may have a post or two on the forum about this. Try a search.

      Carolyn

      Edit: Try this thread. It will land on Jason's post, but there are posts above and below his.

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      • #4
        teaching to kids

        One of the calendar/planner publishers (I can't think of which one) has a 4 lesson outline for teaching time management to kids. Perhaps you could adapt it. I would stick to cpature, process and organize, using a planner and keeping a propject list with next actions. I would not introduce contexts beyond home, school, other places, adjenda, and waiting for. If you the kids have divorced parents and reside in two houses, you might have Dad's and Mom's houses as spearate contexts. Let us know how it turns out and many thanks should go to you for these efforts.

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        • #5
          Thanks for the suggestions on techniques and resources. We have been teaching saving/investing & debt/loans. I sometimes get a bit idealistic and think that the guys will be "hanging on every word" of the discussions.

          The boy's "educated" me when I stared into their vacant eye's midway through my loans segment...Therefore, I realized that it is beneficial to narrow my expectations to hoping they will become interested in and adopt one or two concepts.

          Thanks. My team is open to more "pearls", so keep em' comin!

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          • #6
            Lesson from DayRunner

            DayRunner (ataglance.com) is the company that has a five lesson pre-made teaching packet for getting middle school aged kids to use calendars and manage their time. you have hunt rhough the site and then they will mail it to you. It might save you some time. Just usign a calendar is new for some kids.

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            • #7
              At the middle school where I teach, we give our students an agenda on the first day. It's a basic calendar, planner, and hall pass. We encourage our students to write down their assignments to help them to be more responsible.

              I try to take a day at the beginning of the year to actually teach them how to use it, but not every teacher does. Some students pick up quickly on how to use it while others pretty much lose it the first few weeks and never try to get another one. It's definitely something kids need to be taught, but it's a skill that will really help them out as they get older.

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              • #8
                Agendas are a great GTD intro

                Originally posted by Tspall
                At the middle school where I teach, we give our students an agenda on the first day. It's a basic calendar, planner, and hall pass. We encourage our students to write down their assignments to help them to be more responsible.

                I try to take a day at the beginning of the year to actually teach them how to use it, but not every teacher does. Some students pick up quickly on how to use it while others pretty much lose it the first few weeks and never try to get another one. It's definitely something kids need to be taught, but it's a skill that will really help them out as they get older.
                I spent the last two weeks of summer vacation this past year reading GTD with my middle-schooler (7th grade) and we used his agenda from last year to map out a "GTD-lite" implementation for him. It's helped a lot this year. Good for you for being a progressive and innovative teacher!

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                • #9
                  I second the idea about giving students a planner (or assignment book). We have been using this in the elementary school where I am principal for about 5 years now, and it's one of the best things we ever did. I think having students at that age keep context lists for errands, etc. is too advanced for this point. What works is decide what needs to be done, pick a day when you are going to do it, and write it down for that day.

                  As far as an in-basket, we don't use that terminology, but what we do tell the students is to "pick a spot at home where everything for Mom or Dad's attention is going to go."

                  For your presentation, you can use writing things in the planner (to take care of what GtD would call the "mind sweep') and having a spot for everything for Mom or Dad to take care of the paper traffic.

                  I think that leaves two things to cover. The first is making decisions about paper. I use the acronym "ANT." Every piece of paper is either ACTION (which I include handing off to Mom or Dad as being an action), it goes in their NOTEBOOK (in other words, it's reference material, such as completed assignments, study guides, or whatever they might need to produce on demand), or it's TRASH. All of this gets their desk (or locker) in some sense of order.

                  The final thing I thing would be good in your talk is setting goals. All of the stuff before is about getting things in order. If your school uses Accelerated Reader, having them set a goal fir how many Accelerated Reader points they want to earn by the end of the year would be a good one. Have them turn in the planner to the last week of school and wrote that number down. Have them divide that number out over the year and jot down at the end of each month (or even week) where they would need to be in order to reach their goal.

                  Having been in education for 23 years, I can tell you that organization is HUGE part of being successful as a student. Plenty of kids who are not terribly academically talented still do extremely well if they are doing the kinds of things I have addressed here.

                  Frank

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                  • #10
                    I love the idea about ANT and using the planner to record their goals. I'm definitely going to include these ideas in my presentation next year. Thanks!

                    There is definitely a connection between students who plan their time and their success in school. I had a couple of students today who realized they forgot to use their planner properly and missed out on an important assignment, so they received the message loud and clear. In a way, it was good to see them realize on their own that they made a mistake. It will be a better lesson for them.

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                    • #11
                      GTD for Scouts

                      Thanks for all these great ideas-My co-presenter and I decided on the following-We had two highly efficient & effective mom's come in and present their sytems and beliefs on time mgmnt. One used a family calender and another a day planner with color-coded markers. They both did a fabulous job showing their effective, basic systems. The critical skill that each of them mentioned was that they review the upcoming week before the weekend hits.

                      I presented the "tickler file" and introduced the concept of the "mind sweep". I believe the presentations were effective as the guy's were exposed to a variety of systems without overwhelming them and hammering on "the one best way". We wanted to teach without making it to "school-like". Although, I must confess that the greatest enthusiasm erupted when my co-presentor flipped a jumbo bag of M&M's (to remember Money Management) to each of the guy's.

                      The suggestions presented here provide great material for in-depth follow up meetings on this critical skill. David Allen coach and trainer Jason Womack had stated that the most effective way to instill (I paraphrase) the respect for time is to appeal to young people's dreams and ambitions and have them decide on the very next action that moves them towards realizing them.

                      As so often occurs, another worthwhile series of meetings develop from getting in-depth on a critical topic.

                      Thanks for your support. I'll make sure that the parents as well as the guy's are forwarded the info here. If more thoughts, techniques and/or successes become available-Please add!!!!!!

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