Happy, happy New Year everyone! We go back to school tomorrow…this has been one fast Christmas break! Are you ready to get back to school organized and managing your classroom? I know I am. I must have my things organized or it drives me crazy! But with so many students and different classes coming in and out of my room, it gets out of order quickly!
1. Get Control of the Paper!
I don’t have a paper mess like this (I would truly not survive if my room looked this way), but I do seem to always be looking for a better way to get organized with student papers.
These small plastic drawers are just the right size for student papers. I would label them for each class, but classroom teachers could give each student their own. Just take a drawer and go!
2. Student Anecdotal Notes
I just could not get my anecdotal records together like I wanted. So I created my own. This notebook keeps all my notes for small group reading in one place. Will save me so much time and will also help me to be more focused in my small group planning. Click the picture to see it. I will be posting about how I use it on Sunday.
3. Cleanliness is Next to Godliness
Just like at my house, I don’t know how things get so dirty and dusty so quickly! To help with this, I keep a duster at school to try to keep my bookshelves and desks clean. My duster at school isn’t nearly this pretty…it’s just one drab color, but it does the trick!
4. Keep it Smelling Good!
I teach in a room without windows. No ceiling fan either. Sometimes the room can pick up some smells from the children! Bath and Body Works Wallflowers makes things smell sweet again! If that doesn’t do the trick, I also keep a can Lysol in the room if it’s really bad!
5. Bulletin Board Display
Dandelions and Dragonflies posted this picture of how to display student work in the hall. She has a super cute room by the way! Click the picture to go check it out. Laminating background paper and attaching a clothespin would save a TON of time and work when displaying all the hard work from students. Love this idea!
6. Reading Supplies- Keep them Covered and Put Away
Again those plastic drawers can be such a help with organization! They really should give teachers a discount on them. I have 3 classes of kindergartners. One drawer for each class. I love how they look covered. It covers up the materials and mess on the inside. And you can put so much in these larger, deeper drawers.
7. Organize Student Work in One Place
I like to use Reader’s Notebooks for student work. Now students can keep all their work work, comprehension, vocabulary work and different reading goals and progress all in one spot. It helps the student and me to manage it all if it is in one notebook. Students can come into class, grab their notebook, pencil and book and are ready to go! Click the picture to see it.
8. Student Supplies
Unbelievably, I have not organized my pencils this way yet! I think I may be behind the times on this. I need to get going and do this. This cute picture is from Mandy at Tickled Pink. Click the picture to go to her cute blog!
Have you organized your crayons, markers, colored pencils this way yet? Again, those plastic drawers making a teacher’s life easier! My Joy Filled Life posted this great way to organize all those crazy crayons!
9. Common Core Organization
Managing your records of what common core standards you have taught, when and how often, and what percent of the class has mastered each skill is a big goal. Having documentation of all this helps you with your planning and is a great way to record for your administrators what you have done in the classroom. Click the picture for ELA grades K-5 checklists.
10. IPAD Stations
I have a set of 7 iPads for my room. One for me and student iPads. I know lots more teachers are getting iPads, whether it be an entire set for the whole class or just a few. I don’t need a huge cart for charging them, but would like a set up to make it a bit more manageable. This charging station for multiple iPads looks just like what I need! Wouldn’t take up much room either- that is a huge plus!
I hope these management and organization tips help you get the New Year started in the right way at school! If you need teacher products to help you with this, don’t forget this bundle. My Guided Reading Anecdotal Records Notebook (that I showed above) is included along with a lot of other great organizational/management/decor items!
Everyone deServes to Learn says
I understand your need to organize the paper! Sometimes I don't know which file goes where anymore. Most of our files/paperwork is on a shared network which saves a lot of storage, but I still have a filing cabinet of junk from a former colleague to go through!
Everyone deServes to Learn
Maria, the amount of paper coming in all the time can drive me crazy! Sometimes I feel like I am running out of file folders and space to put them. 🙂
Great ideas! I love that iPad charging station . . . I wonder how well it works. You'll have to let me know! And, I totally need to figure out a good system for recording antidotal reading data. I'm more of a tech person and have found Three Ring (and iPhone/iPad app). It's helped, but I'm not consistent.
What I Have Learned
Jessica, I don't know how well that charging station works yet. I don't have it, but I need it! It looks like it would make things so much easier for me!
Debbie Pierce says
Will you please tell me where you got that iPad charging station? I like that multiple devices can be charged. Thanks firstname.lastname@example.org
Debbie, I emailed you the link to the charging station. It looks like a good one!
Aylin Claahsen says
I love organization so this post just makes me so happy knowing how organized you are in your classroom! One thing I need to do is that crayon sorting system- everyday some student asks me "where's a red crayon?" and every time I help them search for it– that organizer would help out greatly. 🙂
Have a great day back, Lori!
Learning to the Core
Aylin, we think a like- both wanting to be organized! I think the crayon organization is a wonderful idea. Happy New Year!!
I love the charging station. Can you send me the link for it, please? email@example.com
Wouldn't that station be great, Heather? I sent you the email. Thank you for coming by!
I really like the polka dot paper in your large drawers. Keep meaning to do that but still haven't.
Ruby Slippers Blog Designs
Thank you Barbara! I like how the paper covers the chaos inside!
Mrs. K. says
I totally agree that teachers should get a discount on those plastic drawers! I have so many of them in my classroom, but I could always use more. 🙂 I love the look of the covered drawers. I've seen stuff like that on Pinterest but am — embarrassingly — a bit too lazy to do that myself. Maybe next summer… 😉
~Mrs. K. from The Teacher Garden Blog
Mrs. K, I think it is teachers who keep the companies going that make those plastic drawer! 🙂 Covering them is a good summer project!
You are always so very organized. I'm starting to wish I had an ipad for my classroom. Sigh.
Forever in First
Tammy, I hope you get an iPad soon. So much fun for the students!
Susanna Westby says
I could use some of these organizational tips! Oh how I would love to have that many ipads in class – maybe one day!
Whimsy Workshop Teaching
I love having the iPads, Susanna! The kids really do enjoy using them too!
What a great post! Getting organized is one of my goals for the year. I love the display for in the hallway. One thing that drives me crazy is having things fall down. I wonder if the background pages stay put all year or if she has trouble with that. I have yet to find a putty that works well. Oh well. I need to explore apps for the i-pad and uses for my classroom….need more time. Thanks Lori for the great ideas!
Thank you Carla! In our hallway, we have 2 corkboard strips attached to the wall. Then we can staple to the strip instead of having to use tape. It is a big help, but limits how creatively you can place things on the wall. Everything has to be more or less in a straight line. But it does save time!
You are a very organized teacher! You have a lot of things to keep your stuff in place. That’s a nice way of organizing crayons. They often get mixed up or lost that sometimes one student either has two red crayons or is missing one color.
Thanks Ruby! Organization is a must for me! Thank you for coming by to visit!
Conversations in Literacy