Steps for Organizing the Classroom
The number one rule for organization is to have a designated place for each item in the classroom. Paper, pencils, rulers, math manipulatives, books, curricula and craft supplies each need to have their own special place to live in the classroom. If this is a weakness in your classroom, consider the following steps to help organize materials:
- Make a list of each material in the classroom. Leave nothing out, even the paper clips need a place to live!
- In a column next to the list of materials, write the most common location in the classroom where the supply is used. For example, paper clips are most likely used at the teacher’s desk while blank paper is most commonly used at student’s desks.
- Organize the easy materials first. Chalk should go at the chalk board, curricula near the teacher’s desk, etc. This will narrow the list of things to organize.
- For each additional item on the list, stand in the classroom where the item is most commonly used and think through the most effective storage solutions. This might mean clear plastic bins on low shelves for math manipulatives for students to easily reach or a paper station in a clear area of the room to minimize student traffic jams when going for paper.
Label Containers for Ease of Use
Organizing classroom materials in containers is a great way to keep things neat and easy to grab. In order for this organization to be effective, though, every student in the classroom should be able to know what it is in each container as well as any classroom helpers, parent helpers and administrative staff.
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