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How much PLANNING TIME do you have?



Senior Member
Planning Time

I get 40 minutes a day during activity for a planning period.
I get a duty free lunch 4 days a week for an additional 50 minutes, then 15 minutes at the end of the day when the kids leave.

I usually do my big time planning on the weekend then use my shorter planning time for grading etc. My lunch is my relax/down time.


Senior Member
planning time

We get 300 minutes per week, that is when the students have their specials. Then we have district duty time in the am and pm aprox. 60 minutes depending upon buses arriving and leaving. That time they can schedule meetings, tutoring, breakfast and bus duty, anything that the district sees fit.Every 5th week the grade levels rotate breakfast duty and bus duty. 30 minutes of duty free lunch, but we do have recess duty.
Per day we have a minimum of one 40 minute special, 30 minute lunch then the district duty (aprox. an hour combined b4 and after school. However, If you are a special teacher your planning time can run as high as 900 minutes. (They fill their schedule with bogus duties) Don't even get me started on that one. It used to be fairly even until they introduced spanish and technology into the specials mix.
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Senior Member
plan time

I get 30 min. per day. I get 50 minutes for art every other Tuesday and On the opposite Thursday I get an hour for Library and computer. So basically 30 min a day and once a week about an hour. It is tough to plan for Reading, small groups, centers, spelling, language, math, science, social studies in that time.



I get 20 minutes while the students are at recess, plus 1 hour Monday-Thursday. I also save my "major" planning for at home on the weekends. I use my time at school to take care of paper work, makeup work, answering emails, etc.


Senior Member
planning time

I teach elementary Spanish, and my schedule varies each day. I have an hour on Mondays and Tuesdays, which includes both lunch and planning. I usually work and eat at my desk during that time. On Wednesdays, I have 45 minutes free during the day. On Thursdays, I have an hour in the morning and 25 minutes in the afternoon, and on Fridays, I have a half-hour in the morning and a half-hour in the afternoon. I have five minutes between classes. It sounds like a nice schedule. The only downside is the running around the place all day long from classroom to classroom. Very tiring at times.


Senior Member
prep time

i have library 1x for 30 min
and PE 2x for 30 min (60)
and am blessed to have music (band/orch/vocal) 2x
and then computers 1x for 45 min (135)

so that's...225 min per week.

while i love the 45 minute block for music/computers, it's the last chunk of the day, so not much gets done because i'm wiped out!


Senior Member
Never enough!

I have 45 minutes of planning time per day. Every other day, I have lunch duty and have afternoon duty 3 out of every 4 weeks. If only I could figure out why those 45 minutes pass so much more quickly than the rest of the day. :)


Full Member
Planning Time

I have one 30 minute time per day and then we can work during our recess breaks as well if we choose too unless we are on supervision.

As far as lunch goes - we supervise our students as they eat lunch at school until the recess bell. Then we have a 28 minute recess (staff lunch break) unless you have supervision. I have two 15 minute lunch supervisions. We also have two 14 minute recess breaks per day but as far as using recess or lunch for planning the time is never long enough. With lunch I often do not start that break until 5 or 8 minutes into the recess as students are often still finishing up their lunch.

I do planning at home and usually go into the school for a few hours on Sunday afternoon to prepare for the week.


Senior Member
I have 40 minutes at the end of the day unless they throw an assembly or party in there (a favorite dumping period). I also get duty free lunch/recess every other day.


Senior Member
I do special ed....

and by contract, we get 40 minutes per day and a duty free 40 minute lunch. Sounds great, except our preps are when we have to do our evaluating of children, and I can't remember the last time I actually had a lunch without a meeting with the administrator or a teacher about a student. We are the only teachers that routinely are expected to give up our preps or "downtime" lunch.


Senior Member
my planning time

I have 30 minutes planning time, three days a week

I have 15 min, in the early am, then 30 min mid-day, then another 30 min, late afternoon... - - - 1hr.15 min. total planning time two days a week... (that will be changing this week, however...this has changed 5 times this year, due to our whole school schedule changing...thanks alot Hurricane Katrina. :( I don't know who's more confused...me or the kids. I had just started getting used to my schedule, and it changes AGAIN on Tuesday. I probably won't have as much planning time, when the new schedule comes out, (that's how it was, if I remember back...three schedules ago, when all the classes were alone, when they came to see me.)

It's no one's fault at the school, I feel bad for the other teachers too, because now their planning times are also probably going to be rearranged, since my schedule, and pe, and library is being rearranged, it's just that due to the increase in student population again post-Katrina, some of the classes aren't having to team teach anymore, so now I'll get a brand new schedule again this coming week.


Junior Member
We are supposed to have

250 minutes a week, with no more than 2 of our planning periods per week taken up by meetings (not including IEP/IAT meetings).

On a weekly basis that looks like - 1 hour in the morning, 1 45 minute specials period and we have library/learning center 1 day out of 6 for 40 minutes.


Senior Member
When do your days begin and end?

This is really interesting. I don't think I could function on just a 30 min planning period. Our specials are 40 min. We have 2 additonal ones that are 50 min-- one is suppose to be for grade level planning. We also have a 30 min duty free lunch.

Our day starts at 8:00 with kids and ends at 3:00 when they're off to the busses --then we are to stay until 3:15.

Bonnie gr. 2

Full Member

We have to be in school 10 minutes before the kids. We have 5 40 minute professional periods per week. We have to stay 30 minutes after the kids, every day except Friday or before a vacation. We have a faculty meeting or two after school each month. Grrades 3-5 have Spanish twice a week for twenty minutes but it is not a prep, they are supposed to stay in the room. We used to have French in 1 and 2 but that was eliminated this year. Also not a prep. But we would often use it to go the bathroom. We also have a 50 inutes duty free lunch for most of us. We have two teachers who get paid to do it daily. In buildings with no volunteers, they rotate lunch duty. Each teacher had it for 25 minutes.

Things have changed over the years. When I started, the contract said we would have prep time equal to the time the students had specials. There was a year when we had severe financial problems and there was talk of eliminating anything not mandated by the state. Gym/physical activity is mandated but it doesn't have to be taught by a specialist. We have since strenghtened the language so the time is guaranteed. it started at four periods per week and is now 5. Most people have a prep a day, except my grade level partner who has two one day and nothing on Friday. We used to have to do lunch on a rotating basis for the entire period. We fought that. Some days you had no prep and lunch duty the whole period. So when did one go to the bathroom?


Senior Member

I have 3 40-minute preps and 1 30-minute prep per week. I also get 30 minutes for lunch every day. School begins at 7:45, but we have to be there by 7:15 (it can't be considered prep though since kids are allowed in our classrooms at 7:20). School ends at 1:45, and we are required to stay until 2:45 except for Fridays and days before holidays. On Wednesdays, kids get out at 12:20 and we stay until 2:45. So, add all that up and I have 475 minutes in a regular week -- that's almost 8 hours (WOW!) It's amazing that I still don't get everything I need to get done finished in all that time, though. It seems my prep time is cut down by things like waiting for late buses (at least 20 minutes once a week), running into people who have to discuss kids and paperwork, and the like.


Senior Member
Planning period

We have 40 minutes 4 days a week and 30 minutes on the other day for planning period and then our duty day is starts 20 minutes before the kids arrive and ends 30 minutes after they leave. We also have duty free lunch (25 minutes) and I trade recess duty with other teachers so I have an extra 15 minutes 2-3 times a week.

It seems my planning period is for paperwork, meetings, and dealing with day-to-day stuff (checking planners, etc.) I do my planning in the evenings or on weekends.

We are going to talk about how to get more planning time next week.


Senior Member
I get...

I teach at a public school and we get 30 minutes every day while the kids are at PE/Music. Also, one day a week we get another 25 minutes while the kids are at the library, and finally on a different day of the week we get 1 hour while the kids are at Art. We have to teach our own computer lab time.

Our lunch is 35 minutes each day while the kids are also at lunch and recess time. And every day the kids get a second recess which is 15 minutes long. Two days of the week I have either inside or outside recess duty, the other 3 days of the week is also considered plan time.

It is very interesting to see what everyone gets for plan time!


Senior Member
I am supposed to get planning from 8:15 to 9:55. Sounds great and it is great when we get that time to plan. (It's a middle school) We have to meet a lot though. We also have parent conferences and sometimes we have to cover someone's class. I only got full planning on Monday this week--no wait a minute--I had a parent conference that day! I know I should be grateful when I read about you elementary teachers' 30 minutes here and there. In our community, the elementary teachers may have less planning, but the students leave at 2:30. I have kids in my care until well after 3:30 even though dismissal is 3:25. Bus riders aren't dismissed until the busses are all there from delivering the elementary kids. Some kids don't leave campus until 4:00 or so thanks to late busses. If the kids left at 2:30 and I didn't have to attend a faculty meeting, I'd be thrilled to work in my room until 4:00--it would still be earlier than I'm getting out now! I often get to school around 7:00 am to get in some early planning time.

NJ Teacher

Senior Member

We have 30 minutes a day in grades K-2 in our school (which goes up to third grade), In third grade, we have 30 minutes for gym (on two days a week), 35 minutes for music, 45 minutes for art and 45 minutes for library. We have a prep each day. We also have a 40 minute enrichment time, where the enrichment teacher comes into our room. We aren't supposed to leave, even though she's certified, but we do leave to run things off, use the bathroom or make a quick phone call. I use the time to do planning within the classroom and use the computer. What irks me is that at the 4-5 building, all their preps are at least 40 minutes long, and they have teachers to teach Spanish and computers. We have to teach those subjects ourselves.


Senior Member
Planning time

Our contract states tht we should get 250 minutes of planning time a week and 40 min. duity free lunch 5 days per week. If our union finds out we do not the school pays at after hours teaching rates. I think that it is a bennifit of teaching at an organized district. Our school is quite large (over 600 prek -7). We have full time music, art, library and pe as well as a part time PE and music people. Our specials run on a 5 day rotating schedule. This can get tricky for planning time but it usually evens out. It is testing time when we all get "screwed".
We have 15 minutes in the AM before school if we arrive at the designated time (9-9:15 am). Some teachers arrive witht the children so they take their planning time at home. Some teachers like me are there an hour before that. I know that we are not in compliance after school. We should put children on the bus and be back at our rooms by 3:45 but we are usually still dismissing at 4:10. I feel it is in my and my student's best interests to make sure that they get picked up by the right people than to have children roaming the school for an hour after school.
So we really get 249 minutes a week.
We have to meet for close to 90 minutes a week which should be extra but it is not.


Full Member
prep time

I teach 70%.

In a 10 day cycle I get three 30 minute prep times.
I have outside supervision 4 times in the cycle as well.(Lunch and
I could use my 45 minute lunch period for correcting etc.

Full time teachers get one hour and 15 minutes a week.
Some of you that posted are getting a lot more. Lucky


Senior Member
prep time

We have 180 minutes in a 5 day cycle, within the instructional day. Our instructional day is 300 minutes per day or 1500 minutes in a 5 day cycle. That means time before and after school can not be counted as prep time.
Preps shopuld be in blocks of at least 40 minutes and no more than 2 can be less than 30 minutes.
We have a 40 minute uninterrupted lunch --- never happens that way --- somebody always needs a bandage :o
We have 100 minutes of supervision in a 5 day cycle. This could be lunch room, yard duty or bus duty.
Staff meetings are held before or after school and are usually an hour or so long. This year we seem to have 3 meetings month --- too many IMHO.
Our school year is either 194 days or 198 days (can't remember which).
We have 4 non-instructional days and 4 early dismissal days.

Ontario, Canada


Senior Member

The teachers' day is officially from 8-4. Classroom teachers do not have morning or afternoon bus duty (this is done by the special ed/special area teachers.)

By contract, we can have no more than 2 morning meetings/week. Typically, we have one.

Busses are usually gone by 3:45, so thats another 15 minutes.

We have a 30 minute duty free lunch every day. Lunch/recess is 45 minutes long each day. If we have duty, we lose 15 minutes of that. By contract, no more than 3 duties in 10 working days.

As far as specials, they changed the time, and this year they last only 30 minutes (they were 35 minutes previously--that 5 minutes made a big difference!). Our kids have art 2 times per week, music 2 times per week, gym 2 times per week, and library once a week. So thats 210 minutes per week. Our classes also have computers twice a week, and we have to stay with them in the lab, but they were independent, so that time can also be used.

Sooo 210 minutes for specials, but 45 minutes at least 3 days out of every week in the mornings.