At my school, it's a pretty well known fact that I love organization. I am teased about it on a daily basis. But I'm okay with that! There's a spot for everything and everything has a spot, is my motto. Sometimes I wish my students shared my passion for organization, but I don't think that's going to happen.
One of my favorite ways to keep my classroom neat and running smoothly is to use plastic drawers. For, well, just about everything. Here are some ways that I use them in my room and maybe they will work for you too!
This large set of drawers (it's actually 3 different sets) is for my weekly assignments. My students get the same type of homework each week. On Monday, they get a Daily Language paper, a Reading Log and set of vocabulary words. My teammates and I like to make our copies ahead of time. Using these drawers gives me a place to put the papers before I need them. Otherwise I would never find them!
This is a close-up view. Not only do I have a drawer for each assignment, but they are all labeled as well. If I were out, the substitute would be able to easily find them.
I feel as though my mailbox is always overflowing with Scholastic News and National Geographic subscriptions as well as book order forms. I definitely use all of them, but not always right away. Rather than have them build up in a pile on my desk, each one gets their own drawer. This makes it very easy to pull from when I am ready to use them!
This set of drawers is currently in my classroom, although I haven't figured out a use for it yet. I used it quite a bit last year. I had five different reading groups, which were color coded. In each drawer were differentiated reading assignments for each group. The students were very independent in retrieving their work during word work time. It was also easy for me to glance quickly at their work without having to dig through individual folders. Win-win!
My Teacher Toolbox. My pride and joy. This is, by far, my favorite thing I have ever owned. I'm sure you have seem examples of the teacher toolbox all over Pinterest. I made mine a few years ago and it is the best. I am never digging for a paper clip or an elastic band or an eraser. Everything is right at my fingertips! And it is so organized, not just one big pile of junk. And it's so pretty!
I hope that I have helped some of you gather new ideas for organizing your classroom. I know that for me, my day runs so much smoother when I have a classroom that is neat and put-together. I also know that I am probably in the minority. I am okay with that. I don't mind the teasing.
But maybe this is my real secret...