Recently we asked our National School Furniture Facebook Fans to share with us their tips and tricks for keeping the classroom organized and tidy before, during and after the school year. We got so many wonderful tips we think it’s only fair that we share them with all of our customers and readers.
- Use crates to store materials that students use on a daily basis. Crates can also serve as storage bins for your unused materials during the summer months.
- Keep the room tidy by assigning group leaders to different areas of the room. Group leaders are in charge of making sure materials are all in the proper place.
- Swivel Sweepers are a great way to clean up glitter, paper and other small scraps.
- Use clear boxes with lids and labels. Using labels makes clean up even easier because the students know where everything goes.
- During the school year Wendy V. uses “Spruce the Sprite” who lands in random but very, very clean desks or cubbies. Spruce only likes tidy spaces. If she lands overnight then the student who finds her in his area the next morning, gets to keep her all day and write a journal entry in Spruce’s Diary. The kids think it’s cute and compete to keep not only their desk and cubbies neat but the surrounding areas as well, since Spruce doesn’t like pencil shavings and such.
- Color code library books and the bins that they belong in. You can sort them by theme, genre or reading level.
- Keep germs out of the classroom with anti-bacterial wipes. By getting your students involved in cleaning their own desks it teaches them the importance of keeping germs out of the classroom.
- Create a plan a week or two out and have copies made and ready for the upcoming weeks. Place class sets of worksheets in order in bins labeled Monday-Friday, which also makes it easy if you have a substitute.
- Angie C. gives the kids a hand in the process, they each have a job in the classroom and get paid in CC’s (Cruz Cash) for the work they do. This can be used throughout the year in the class store. They keep track of their money in a “wallet” (envelope with name on it) and add or subtract on the envelope as they go.
- Chalice K. teaches her students procedures in the beginning of the school year. She teaches them where things are, how to get them and to put them away in the proper place. As the year progresses, I make sure that the students are the ones taking care of the room. They learn responsibility and take ownership of the room. It doesn’t take long, and the students learn that everyone has their place in a community.
- Julie S. plays “I Spy” to encourage the students to pick up at the end of the day. The students know when one item has been spied on the floor that doesn’t belong there. They have two minutes (no running, pushing, yelling or you get “disqualified”) to pick up anything that might have “forgotten” to get put away and when time is up the person that happened to pick up the one thing was spied gets to pick a prize.
- Use an artist’s portfolio folder to keep bulletin board supplies, holiday items, etc. organized in one place. Danielle G. finds it easiest to fold it up and keep it stored nearly in the classroom.
- Suzanne M. likes to organize the classroom closet by subject so it’s easier to find the specific things she is looking for. She does this with bins and color-coordinating everything.
To see the entire list of ways to keep the classroom organize you can visit the National School Furniture Facebook Page anytime. As the school year quickly approaches it’s important to start the year out clean, organized and tidy. You can stock up on all of your must-have classroom organization products on our website! As an added bonus, if you shop today through 8/9/2011 you can take advantage of the National School Furniture Back to School Savings Event – 15% off any order over $150 when you enter coupon code NSFSUMMER at checkout.
As always, don’t forget to share with us in the comments section the ways you like to keep the classroom organized.