I’m all about simple.
Like REALLY simple. Clutter and chaos are my enemies.
That’s why I LOVE binders.
Nice, shiny white binders – with clear sleeve covers.
And TONS of clear plastic page sleeves inside.
Here are the top 3 reasons why you should also be obsessed with binders.
I loathe file cabinets. I have ONE drawer in a teacher friend’s file cabinet. I keep my math homework in there. Basically it is an out of sight storage container.
That’s my drawer there… the one with the dragonfly on it. Keeping my math homework in there is fine. I just grab a stack each week. Then the next week’s is automatically in front. There is no sorting through this cabinet trying to find things. I don’t ever have to LOOK at what’s in there. It was simply the easiest and most out of the way place to store pages that were torn out of 30 books. That’s the ONLY way I use a filing cabinet.
File cabinets are great for storing things that you don’t need to sort through. Easy access. Minimize chaos. Eliminate clutter.
File cabinets are not very efficient for storing teaching resources. BINDERS are the way to go for those original resources you use year after year. They are extremely effective and highly organized. It is MUCH easier to flip through a binder and see EXACTLY what you are looking for rather than pull file folders in and out of a drawer.
Plan a month at a time. Plan each month around a unifying theme or two to bring cohesiveness to your days and weeks. This is a perfect way to fit in social studies and science into your busy, busy day. Use a binder of fabulous resources to help with that planning!
Each month should have a binder. Identify that binder by theme – keeping the focus clear and concise. In that binder place everything used during that month for ELA, math, social studies and science that isn’t in district curriculum. An entire month’s worth of reproducibles/originals in one place. Remember, the key is simplify. Having a BUNCH of binders will hinder your ability to reach that objective.
3 – COPYING & FILING SIMPLIFIER
Place a copy of each original you use in a plastic sleeve.
Group these sleeves by copying requirements.
Before copying, flip through your pages to be sure you have included/excluded all that is necessary for your kiddos that particular school year. Also, edit your pages. If you find you don’t like something, throw it away – remove it from your binder. Keep only what you will use. Simplify!
The originals never leave their sleeves, so “refiling” is easy. They just get plopped right back into the binder, snap the rings shut and put back on the shelf. Everything stays in pristine condition – no wrinkles, tears or file cabinet snafus. Another month… done!
That’s it. Simple. Quick. And an ESSENTIAL part of an organized school year!
I’m curious. Is this helpful? Does it suit your style? How do you organize your year?
For more *Bright Ideas* please check out the links below from 150 different teacher blogs!