Monday, December 3, 2012

How I Became a Genius!

Have you ever been asked to organize something that seems really overwhelming?

My son attends a local preschool co-op and this year I am participating on the parent board as the Curriculum Chairperson. This means that my committee and I help do things like make name tags, put up bulletin boards, make art folders, cut out materials for class projects, and help with a lot of the physical classroom prep so that the teachers can concentrate on teaching our kids!

When I got the big binder with all of my responsibilities in it I was a bit overwhelmed.

(My son helping me set up the firetruck outdoor play area in October) 

Fortunately about ten other moms from the school were assigned to my committee to help me (thank goodness!). One of our big jobs each month is to change around the indoor and outdoor play areas based on different themes. Since I was already seven months pregnant when the school year started, I knew I would need to be extra organized this year and I knew that I would need help.

SignUpGenius has seriously saved my life.

In about five minutes back in September I was able to go online, sign in on the site, and create a super simple sign-up sheet for my committee members! All I did was type up a brief intro about their responsibilities and add in the months where I needed them to help. After that I quickly copied and pasted everyone's emails into my list and sent off my sign-up sheet. I was amazed at how quickly I was able to get the monthly assignments filled because I didn't have to spend time talking or emailing with each committee member individually and keep track of their replies.

Below are a few of the awesome indoor and outdoor play areas that my committee has set up so far this year. Since they signed up online for their jobs back in September and got email reminders as their assignments approached each month, everyone was very organized and remembered to do their job. Hooray!

(Doctor's office) 

(Pumpkin Patch)

(Grocery Store)

(Thanksgiving Feast)

(Gift Wrapping Station)

In addition to using SignUpGenius for our monthly theme set ups, I also used it when I helped organize our school's Community Science Day!

I broke down all of the stations that needed volunteers for science day and created a simple sign up sheet. I emailed this sign up off to the teachers and committee members and I had almost all of my slots filled within 24 hours. Instead of having to send reminders out about each person's job, I wrote it in the description on the sign up and so when volunteers showed up to Science Day they already knew what they needed to do!

If you want to read more about how our Science day turned out, head on over to read my post featuring 2 Simple Science Activities for Toddlers.

In addition to being an easy way to have volunteers sign up, there are several other reasons why I LOVE using SignUpGenius:

  • It is FREE!
  • It eliminates the need for sign up sheets (which I always lose!), phone trees, and reply all emails.
  • It provides several privacy settings so I can decide who can participate in my sign-ups.
  • It sends automated email reminders in advance to each volunteer (so you don't have to be the one to nag people! ;))
  • You can transfer sign-ups to other accounts and a fabulous archives section is maintained... so next year I can pass all of my sign-ups to the new curriculum chair at preschool so that she doesn't have to reinvent the wheel.
  • It remembers previous groups that I set up so that I don't have to type in emails each time I send a list or sign up to the same group.
  • Provides quick support if you have any problems while you are using the program (I know this first hand... since I had to contact them for help at one point).

Are you using SignUpGenius yet? 

It can be used for sign-ups for school, church, family, your child's sports team, and many other ways! I am always trying to find a new way to use it. 

Do you have any other creative ways you've used this tool to make your life easier and more organized? I'd love to hear about them!

Disclosure: thanked me with a gift card for reviewing their site. The gift card was not dependent on a positive or negative review of the site, but was compensation for helping to spread the word. All opinions expressed are my own.


  1. Good to know about! I think electronic organization tools are so helpful for events for busy parents. I blogged on Jooners which is similar but am happy to learn about Sign Up Genius.

    1. Thanks for sharing! I have heard of Jooners, but didn't know what it was. I agree that anything to keep moms organized is so helpful! I am so forgetful.

  2. I LOVE Sign Up Genius! It really is genius! And so easy! The play areas at your preschool are amazing--great work!!!


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