Jumping on the Disc Bandwagon

I saw a Facebook Post where someone  posted a YouTube clip about using disc notebooks. I thought I had a great idea to use the disc system for my therapy notebook, but then a friend mentioned she used it for her data notebook and I knew that was where the idea originally came from!
This is my notebook at the beginning of the year:

I used this notebook to keep attendance records, individual data sheets, as well as any other loose paper I wanted to file at the end of the year. I also had a plastic folder where I kept the labels that I use for data collection.
This is the notebook and the folder I used to use.
My idea was that I could combine those 2 into just 1 folder using the disc system.

I did a little bit of research and decided to use the Arc system from Staples. My main reason was that another brand was quite a bit more expensive and didn’t appear to be a much better quality than the Arc. I ordered the punch and a couple packages of 1 ½ inch discs from Amazon then waited for everything to come in. The punch was the last thing to arrive and it actually came to my house a few days before I expected it.
My therapy notebook now:

I researched and ordered during Spring Break, so I was excited to get to school that Monday and see how it would all come together. I almost went by the school after my punch came in to get a jump on it, but I held back.
I used pieces of cardstock paper to divide my sessions and used tabs to write the time of each session. The tabs are reusable, which I found out when I put one in the wrong place and thought I had to take it off to fix it. I forgot that I can very easily take the cardstock out and move it where I wanted it. (Creature of habit!) I wrote on the tabs because you can’t run them through the printer. I suppose I could have made labels for them with a label maker to make them look nicer, but I’m the only one who sees them so it really doesn’t matter.

Cardstock dividers with labels
I took the plastic folders that I previously used to hold my data labels, trimmed them down to a regular sized paper, and punched holes at the top of them. I put one side of the trimmed folder in the back of the notebook to keep some loose papers. Even though the holes are now at the top instead of the side, the papers are staying in the folder.

The paper shown is from Small Talk SLP's Apraxia: Sound Blending in Syllables.
Now I have all of the students' papers in 1 notebook. It's not bulky at all. I could take the label sheet out for each therapy session, but I haven't needed to. I just keep it in the notebook and take my data. One nice thing about this system is that the notebook doesn't have to be open for me to take the data, I just flip the pages to the current session's data sheet.
I keep each student's individual data in the notebook. When the sheet of labels is full, I transfer the labels to each student's individual sheet.


Attendance sheets are kept in the same notebook.

Progress charts are also in the notebook.
As you can see, I have quite a bit in the notebook! As I complete each session, I just flip over to the next session and the datasheet is on top. It's not too bulky to be uncomfortable, and I'm not switching from one book to the other at the end of the day to complete attendance.
Comparison of the sizes of my old notebook (left) vs. the new (right).
There are some really cute covers out there that are available for purchase, but the rings are on the side. The lady in the video suggested using plastic placemats from the dollar store, so I tried them and it works! The only drawback to buying covers/pages that have already been punched is that I’m a lefty. That comes with its own challenges, but since I punched the tops of the pages the discs are on the top and aren’t in my way when I write. Hopefully, the disc companies will catch on to this and will begin to offer more in the way of top-loading items, especially with covers.

How about you? Are on the disc bandwagon with your planner, data notebook, or something else? Comment below...I'm always looking for some great ideas! 

3 comments:

  1. I am so glad you found the disc bound system a benefit to your SLP life. You know I love them and the endless possibilities they provide!

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  2. I looked into them, but they are expensive! I print a planner for the whole year and have it spiral bound. It costs me 8.00 or 9.00 dollars to have bound. I am fascinated by your system, though.

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    Replies
    1. The punch is rather expensive. I purchased it on Amazon for around $45 and the 1.5 inch discs were $5.20. I found some 1 inch discs at Office Depot for a little over $3, and they work fine with the Arc system. I looked at Micheals and the discs were quite a bit more expensive. You know I like inexpensive!!!!
      The good thing is, with the disc system, once I'm through with a notebook & can take it apart, put those papers in a folder, and reuse the discs.
      Thanks for reading!!!

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