Teacher Spotlights are our way of highlighting and getting to know some awesome teachers in our community who use Planboard to simplify their lesson planning.

Meet Samantha!

Q: What is your favourite/most used feature in Planboard?

A: Week feature, color coded subjects/schedule, connecting outside resources to a lesson, adding links and videos into the lesson

Q: How has Planboard made your life easier?

A: I can reuse lessons from year to year making my lesson planning this year extremely stress free. I can adjust lessons from one day to another, shift back and forth as needed with a few clicks, and save resources I didn’t use for another time. I can easily look ahead and see what I have coming up without changing pages and also look back and shift those un-used lessons around.

Q: What education trend are you excited about?

A: Learning through play. I am a firm believer that children need to play to learn. They use play in so many ways to form connections in their brain that help them remember concepts normally taught through books and study for older kids. Preschoolers especially need play for learning and I try to incorporate that as much as possible.

Q: Why did you decide to become a teacher?

A: I actually began as a band/choir teacher. I knew I wanted to teach when I was standing in front of the 6th grade band one morning during a teacher/student study hall. I was volunteering my time in the band room because it was my most favorite place to be. I was getting the trombones to figure out a passage and telling them the positions to work out the notes when they suddenly got it and the light in their eyes was so exciting. I cheered for them but I realized that I had just as much fun teaching it to them as they did figuring it out!

Q: If you could take your students on any field trip, where would you go?

A: The petting zoo in south KC, MO. Deanna Rose is a wonderful petting zoo and I wish we lived so much closer so that it could be a possibility some day. It’s such a fun experience to watch students treat animals with kindness and have pure joy at being around the animals.

Q: Aside from students, what is something you can’t teach without?

A: Planboard 100%, sticky notes, and my apron. Planboard has made my life so much easier and less stressful, that if I had to have everything written down by hand, I would go crazy. Sticky notes because I’m constantly remembering something I need to do or having a reminder for something later, so that it’s easy to cover my desk sometimes! My apron has pockets that I embroidered for this year to keep items in and I wear it regardless of my outfit. I have seating charts, my phone, and a pen in my apron at all times. It’s become so convenient that I feel weird taking it off!

Q: Do you have any traditions or superstitions for the First Day of School?

A: I make a special white playdough for the students filled with a small ball of different colored playdough. I add a little glitter and I tell them that it’s magic playdough. If they are going to have a good day, the magic playdough will change colors. And inevitably, every playdough changes as they play with it!


Planboard is a free online lesson planner and gradebook that is used by 600,000+ teachers. Planboard makes it easy to get organized and reduce your classroom prep time. Accessible from anywhere, you can plan lessons, align to standards and manage your schedule with ease. Learn more about Planboard and sign up for free today.

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