Meg Frantz By Meg Frantz • February 20, 2020

5 Simple Ways I Organize My Calendar While Earning My Degree

Organization. It can sound daunting, right? Especially if you have a lot on your plate.

Whether you’ve enrolled in your first, fifth or final class at TESU, staying on top of due dates when you are juggling work, family and, possibly, multiple classes can always be tricky.

I find that by taking a few steps each week to organize my schedule, plan meals, take care of my car and everything else, I wake up less at night worrying and accomplish more during the day. And who couldn’t use a few more zzz’s or a few more “atta boys” for getting the little stuff done? When you focus on the big picture, you’ll find methods that work for you in organizing your calendar and, ultimately, your life.

Electronic calendars and family organizing apps such as Cozi can work as well, but I’ve found that having a month at a glance is an easier way to understand the big picture. Then, it can be viewable by more than one person at a time. Plus, the paper calendar is an opportunity to get a little bit crafty.

Here’s what I do to stay on track.

1. Find a paper calendar.

For me, the best one is a month at a glance. Dig out your favorite colorful pens and pencils because multiple colors are the most helpful – and fun! Plus, writing things down will cement them in your memory.

2. Gather ALL your schedules into once place.


Compile your class schedule(s), assignment due dates, personal commitments, work deadlines and kids’ activities in one place for a comprehensive overview of your obligations. Whether you use apps, Outlook calendars, wall calendars or something else, having it all in one place is key to know what is needed and getting it all done. (Side note: If you choose to go the digital route, you can also export your course calendar from the Moodle app to a Google, Outlook or other calendar application. Watch this video to learn how.)

3. Pick a topic and coordinating color and starting filling in the calendar pages. 

I like brighter colors (like pink and red) for class deadlines, green for bills, blue for the kids, purple for the dog, orange for work and black for the rest. For course work, I find it helpful to put the week number on each Monday to keep me in the right place.

4. Finalize the details.

After you put in all the details you know are coming up, you’ll have a better idea of where the busy times are so that you can work ahead to meet those deadlines without stressing out.

5. Get everyone on the same page. 

Having everything in one place helps not only with working ahead in your course work, but provides a great jumping off point to talking with family and friends about what support you could use and when. When everyone in the household is on the same page, you’ll decrease stress levels while your family shares in your success!

Enjoy getting organized!

Meg Frantz

Written by Meg Frantz

Meg Frantz is the director of Alumni Affairs, with a background in marketing for nonprofit art organizations and higher education. She holds a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis on theatre arts from Susquehanna University and is currently pursuing her master's degree from TESU. Connect with her via email at mfrantz@tesu.edu.

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