August 14, 2013

Teacher Week: Organization...Now Teach!

With everything that a teacher is responsible for keeping up with, I cannot begin to imagine having a lack of organization in the classroom. I am constantly re-organizing my already organized room at the end of each day to avoid a melt down.
True? I think so!
I'm going to share with you how I organize and keep track of student's papers and center organization.
For the last 2 years I have stored my centers in a binder where I put examples and printouts in plastic page protectors. My collection grew to 2 bulging 3" binders. I had had enough!
I came across some very cute monthly labels on Instagram and just knew I had found my new way to store centers!
Each month gets its own tub. I found these tubs at Target on sale for just over $3 a piece. Great steal!!
Inside I store ALL centers for that month, literacy and math. Right now, everything is just sorted into the tubs, but my plan is to take large manila envelopes and store the printables inside of them with the cover page of the center packet on the front.
Check out these Monthly Tub Labels by That's So Second Grade!

Here are the 3 things you will need:
1. colored stackable sorting trays      2. magnetic colored pockets      3. colored trays

Each day we have 3-4 jobs.  This is what I call their skill work or practice pages.
Job 1 is red.
Job 2 is yellow.
Job 3 is green.
Job 4 is blue.

Each morning, I display what the students will be working on in the magnetic pockets next to our calendar.  This gives them an idea of the work they will be completing that day.

Each job they are to complete can be found in the colored tray, each tray holding a different set of papers. This is where the students will pick their papers up from.  They then return to their desk to work on it. 

When they are finished, they will turn their papers into the colored stackable sorting trays and head back over the the colored trays to pick up their next job.

*** What makes this system uber-important are the color codes. Most of the time the color codes help the students answer their own questions.  If they forgot what job they are on, they can look up at the magnetic pockets to find what paper they just completed.  Whatever color the pocket is would be the same color stackable tray they would turn it into.

This system takes a bit of training at the beginning of the year.  But around mid-year, the students are able to move from one job to the next at their own pace. I rarely get the following questions: "What do I do now?   Where do I turn this in?  Where do I get my paper from?"  I promise you, the training is SOOOOO worth it! And the best part is, everything is already sorted for you! {PTL}!!!!!
Don't forget to link up over at Blog Hoppin' with your organizational ideas!


  1. Wow! Thanks for sharing. I love your color coded jobs. I will definitely look into that.

    The Very Busy Classroom

  2. I love this idea for workstations! The only thing I would ask is how you differentiate. Does everyone do the same 4 jobs, or do you modify assignments as needed?

    My kids come tomorrow, so I obviously can't implement this, but I might could get it ready over the weekend!