Let’s Get Organized!

I have taught for over 11 years and I don’t think I have ever thrown anything away:)  So this year I decided is the year that I was going to get organized.   I started with centers and activities that I use in the classroom.

I spend a lot of money on laminating all of the center cards and information sheets.  I also spend a ton on plastic tubs and I CANNOT handle one more bin in my classroom.  So this year when I discovered the awesomeness of binders I had to share it with all of my colleagues and fellow teacher friends!

I like to use 2 inch binders and I have the binders broken down into months.  The one shown is for November Math Centers.  
What Do I Put in the Binder?
Recently I went through my math center bins and I couldn’t believe how much I saved.  I have a hard time wasting paper, so I would sometimes keep 20 recording sheets when I only need one.  So from now on, I am only keeping the master copy.
I purchase heavy duty paper sleeves (from target) and then let the organizing begin!
The first page I place in the binder (after the cover) is the table of contents.  I buy so many TPT products that I cannot possibly get to all of the activities, so I make sure to place the table of contents in the front, that way the following year I can try new activities to keep everything fresh and exciting for the kids (and myself).
The next page I place in the binder is the teacher information page.  This gives a brief overview of the activity and materials needed.  When I am searching for activities I am usually looking for specific skill areas and the common core standard at the top of the page makes my search a lot easier.
Next, I place in the student directions.  This page is nice, because it fosters independence within the center (which means less interruptions for the teacher).  
Next I clip together all of the center task cards.  I always double check to make sure I have all of the pieces before I clip them and place them in a sleeve with center and bin labels.  I place an extra paper clip (binder clip) at the top to prevent them from falling out!

Finally I add ONE recording sheet.  It feels so good to have everything in one place!  I feel like I am less wasteful and I am more than happy to donate my bins to Goodwill!

The unit above is from My November Math and Literacy Centers Bundle.  November Math Centers is the first of many of my centers to receive a makeover.  All of my new units will contain, a teacher information sheet, student “I Can” page, bin and center labels.  Click on any of the pictures above to check it out!


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