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Old Tue Aug 29, 2006, 11:23am
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Notes

I heard it mentioned at camp last weekend (and I think here in the past) that you should "keep a book". The suggestion on contents were camp evaluations from the off season, your goals for the year and game notes from each game (how it went for you, unusual situations, comments about the teams (style of play on offense and defense, players that had issues, coach's conducted)), etc.

What are your thoughts on this...are they a valuable tool? What do you put in yours if you keep one?
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Old Tue Aug 29, 2006, 02:36pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LarryS
I heard it mentioned at camp last weekend (and I think here in the past) that you should "keep a book". The suggestion on contents were camp evaluations from the off season, your goals for the year and game notes from each game (how it went for you, unusual situations, comments about the teams (style of play on offense and defense, players that had issues, coach's conducted)), etc.

What are your thoughts on this...are they a valuable tool? What do you put in yours if you keep one?
I've found this to be a very valuable tool. However, to make it valuable you need to:
  • Make notes after every game, or series of games if you're doing rec ball
  • Leave time to review your notes before your next game.
If you'll do that, it'll become a great tool to help you progress. But if you leave out either step, it will be far less valuable to you.
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Old Tue Aug 29, 2006, 09:06pm
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I've been doing this since I started. I keep track of every game for financial purposes etc..... I also make notes for most games about different situations.


I make notes about:
- reminding myself about my weak areas (ex: missing calls in the first
possession of the game)
- coaches and what works with some as oppose to others
- calls that I wish I could take back
- tough situations that could have been avoided by a better pre-game
- partners and what to work on for next time I work with them
- the list can be endless

I find it nice to go back and review notes from a couple of years ago. Some of these learning experiences are quickly refreshed because they are on paper.

As far as goals are concerned, I never actually wrote them down but that sounds like a good idea.

I started officiating 6 years ago. I gave myself three goals to be achieved by Year 5. I got two out of three. Still working on Number 3.

Now I've come up with a couple of new goals for the next two to three years.
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Old Wed Aug 30, 2006, 12:25am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LarryS
I heard it mentioned at camp last weekend (and I think here in the past) that you should "keep a book". The suggestion on contents were camp evaluations from the off season, your goals for the year and game notes from each game (how it went for you, unusual situations, comments about the teams (style of play on offense and defense, players that had issues, coach's conducted)), etc.

What are your thoughts on this...are they a valuable tool? What do you put in yours if you keep one?
I have a notebook that I keep with me during the season. It contains my assignments, phone numbers of all my partners and other administrative stuff like 2-person and 3-person pregame forms. I also keep my rule books and case books (etc.) in there along with copies of a few articles that have been useful to me over the years. There are also some good notes from camps I have been to and all my observations from state tournaments.

I have never found much use for keeping a journal. All the mistakes that I have made over the years are burned into the "do not repeat" part of my brain and I obsess about them on my way home from the games. I don't think I'd gain anything from reading about them again later.

Z
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Old Wed Aug 30, 2006, 01:47am
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Keeping a detailed journal would be a bit obsessive for me, but if it works for you then do it. And I know my goals without having to see them written over and over again.

Like Zebraman, I remember my mistakes and equally importantly what the best solutions for those mistakes are...I don't like to look stupid twice if I can avoid it and/or it's within my control. I'm also fortunate in that I remember good things as well...when the alpha dogs in my assoc tell me the "right" way to do something I listen, remember, practice, and apply.

As for knowing my partners, I hope I never have to revert to keeping a notebook on them.
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Old Wed Aug 30, 2006, 02:14am
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What works for one person certainly may not work for another. And plenty of people have become talented and successful officials without keeping a game journal.

I will make two observations, however. First, in nearly every area of life where people look to improve, the people I know who keep some kind of journal generally progress faster than those who don't. Second, as regards those who say they have no problem remembering their mistakes, sure we all remember the ones that hurt. For a while. But without the benefit of a journal, they honestly have no way to know how much or how little they actually remember.

I will say that I suspect keeping a game journal, for improvement purposes, is probably more beneficial early in an official's career than later on. But I haven't gotten to the later on part yet to know for sure
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Old Wed Aug 30, 2006, 08:25am
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I've been officiating for about 13 years now and never kept a journal. But for various reasons, I will be trying it out this year for my college games. Maybe some of us who do it can compare notes a little halfway through the season.
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Old Wed Aug 30, 2006, 08:38am
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Oooops,

Sorry about dropping in from the baseball side of this site:

During my career I have umpired 3,801 baseball games.

I have a one page journal entry for 3,798 of those games.

There is a section where I always evaluate myself (doesn't matter if I am working the plate or base) on a 100 point scale. I also evaluate my partner.

I list any odd plays or rules questions (I am considered an "authoritive opinion" on various baseball rules BECAUSE I researched many rules that were listed in my journal) that came up during the game.

Since I have always been involved in associations that dictated payment I have never had to keep track of that type information. Other things in my journal would be of interest in baseball only (i.e. field conditions, etc.)

It is my personal opinion that keeping a journal is a great way to review your performance and become better by working on the weakness that you have listed.

Regards,
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Old Wed Aug 30, 2006, 08:59am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim C
Sorry about dropping in from the baseball side of this site:

During my career I have umpired 3,801 baseball games.

I have a one page journal entry for 3,798 of those games.

There is a section where I always evaluate myself (doesn't matter if I am working the plate or base) on a 100 point scale. I also evaluate my partner.

I list any odd plays or rules questions (I am considered an "authoritive opinion" on various baseball rules BECAUSE I researched many rules that were listed in my journal) that came up during the game.

Since I have always been involved in associations that dictated payment I have never had to keep track of that type information. Other things in my journal would be of interest in baseball only (i.e. field conditions, etc.)

It is my personal opinion that keeping a journal is a great way to review your performance and become better by working on the weakness that you have listed.

Regards,
Tim,

What happen to the 3 lost game journals? Did Bruce Froeming eat them?
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Old Wed Aug 30, 2006, 10:02am
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I want to add that a journal always seemed normal to me. When I played baseball years ago, I kept notes on pitchers and various other things. When I started officiating, I didn't think twice about keeping ajournal. If it going to be a chore, you're probably better off not using it.
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