July 13, 2012

Organizing all the "Stuff"

With so many new experiences that will be happening this fall, organization is KEY! Teaching high school comes with a great need for organization and I do believe that staying organized has helped me be successful.

There is little room in my small little classroom-it barely fits all the students, forget about all the "stuff" we teachers need. So I have to make use of every bookcase and every shelf I have. In my room I have two bookcases and one filing cabinet. One of the bookcases fits binders and such, which is where I keep my binder for every book/unit I teach.
The binders are labeled on the spine, as well as have a see-through cover so I can get a quick visual reminder of what's inside. [Notice my top shelf is all Cheer binders and goodies since I don't have a cheer office] I stacked the composition books between some of the binders for two reasons: One-if the kids took them home, they'd forget to bring them to homeroom every Tuesday, and Two-I had no where else to put them :)

I then have an additional bookcase where I keep tools that the students can access: bins of marker, crayons, colored pencils, glue, scissors, highlighters, and a big bin of random art supplies. I also have all the DVDs on one shelf, and I save the top shelf to display student projects.

The last two organizational tips for this entry have to do with keeping me [and the students] organized. In a previous post I mentioned the new wall-hanging file folders I have that have helped organize 'extra' papers the students frequently ask for. This has helped tremendously, and so have a few other ideas using the 'walls'. I am fortunate to have two whiteboards in my classroom. I use the one at the front of the room for teaching and the daily warm-up. The area in the top left of the whiteboard is reserved for the daily warm-up of Roots [welcome to English]. I keep it in the format I'd like them to use, and it's up there as a constant reminder.

And lastly, the other whiteboard. This whiteboard is on the side of the classroom and is reserved for the weekly agenda. Every Monday I post the week's classroom agenda and the homework. This helps those students that like to know what we're doing in class that day [I just point to the board when they ask] and gives them an overview of the week's homework load. Now, all this is on my teacher website [the wiki] that they all have access to and are supposed to look at every night, but of course, that doesn't happen. This board keeps the students, and me, accountable.

The little column to the right is labeled "Extras". This houses the bell schedule, the ASB rep meeting times, and the week's announcements.

We don't always have time to answer a million questions everyday, and yes, I think there have been days where I've answered a million questions. So staying organized is a good way to stay on top of pertinent information, keep the students on top of their assignments, and to, in a way, create a sense of balance and routine for the class.

I hope this sparks a few ideas for how to organize your classroom!

Ms. W

1 comment:

  1. Love the idea of using the weekly agenda whiteboard as accountability for both students and the teacher.