My classroom is a hot mess 99% of the time. I have so much stuff and not enough time to put it where it goes.
I inherited A LOT of files from a teacher who retired. There was about 3 drawers FULL in my 4 drawer file cabinet of her stuff. It was awesome, don’t get me wrong. But it was a lot to take in and handle. I wasn’t sure what I needed or what I would use. So i left all of it. Until Christmas break. In this time where the file cabinet was out of commission, I piled up the papers to file on a shelf. That added to the clutter.
During Christmas Break, I went through and tossed quite a bit of it and actually organized the file cabinet. That has helped quite a bit. I have a place to put everything. But tossing it in the “to be filed” shelf is a lot quicker than filing it.
I also started the year with a lot of bare shelves and cupboards. When you are a first year teacher, you don’t come in a with a lot of stuff. It has accumulated over the months, and now I’m not sure where to put everything. The organization just isn’t working. Things will all fit in a cupboard, and I’ll get more of the same type and it won’t fit there anymore. Do you see the dilemma?
My other problem is I have bought SO many books. They are starting to not fit on the bookshelf. I need another bookshelf. Is having too many books ever a problem though?
I really just need a day with no kiddos where I can figure stuff out. Again. Good thing there is one coming up this week. It is much needed.
What are your favorite teacher organization tips? I could use a few. :]
10 thoughts on “Classroom Problems”
Many classroom teachers I know use small bins or totes for their books and are organized within the totes by reading level or genre. I think it takes up less space that a bookshelf and makes them transportable to a desk or another room if needed. Label your cabinets as to what goes in them and stick with it. You’ll not only help yourself but a sub who is in for you, too! Good luck!
I have had this feeling so many times over the years. I also inherited other teacher’s “stuff” each time I had to move to a new room. Finally, I decided to dump it all and start fresh. I figured that everything becomes outdated or you can easily find it on Pinterest or Teacherspayteachers.com so much faster than looking through a file cabinet. When I came up with a plan to organize my library I put some money into having someone build me bookshelves that fit the space. Then I sorted and created a book nook space for my classroom where students could find books easier. Good Luck!
I’d give you some tips, if I could,,,but I am too disorganized! You are so smart to be tackling this in your first year…stuff has a tendency to multiply.
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I just recently had to purge some of my books that kids weren’t reading – I took them in to Half Price Books. If you have the space, get another bookshelf! Keep adding – especially if this is your first year!
In terms of staying organized, I am trying hard to make a lot of my files digital. I don’t need to keep paper copies! It is always nice to have a day without kids to just get yourself in order, though. Good luck!
Don’t be afraid to throw stuff away! I find that I rarely go back to old files anyway. You can always put stuff in the “cloud” without having to hold on to a physical copy. And sometimes things get cluttered. Forgive yourself. I do have too many books though…
You are not alone! It is easy to gather and difficult to turn loose. I wish I had some great tips for you, but even after 26 years I find myself just needing a few kid-free days to get myself reorganized.
No such thing as too many books! I know how you feel! I’m in my 13th year and I’m still an organizational disaster!
The recycling and trash bins are your friend! Every three months or so I do a deep cleanse of my classroom and purge a lot of stuff that isn’t being used. At the beginning of every month, I try to organize all of the materials that I will need for that month. I also ask for volunteers to help file my “to be filed” stack!
-Amanda at https://teachingwanderlust.com/
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My tip is find a spot for everything and then always put things in their spot. I am really bad at this, but when I do it, at least my desk is clean. 🙂
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I remember tossing and tossing and tossing the previous teacher’s stuff when I started teaching in Manhattan. Sometimes a good purge is all you need to start fresh.