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Friday, December 28, 2012

Organization is my middle name!

I am probably one of the most organized people around and I was very excited to see that there is a linky party about one of my FAVORITE topics!

blessings giveaway

I am linking up with Hope at Second Grade Shenanigans, and sharing some of the techniques I use to keep my classroom and students organized.

Ziploc Baggies
I am addicted to Ziploc baggies. I keep everything and I mean everything in labeled baggies. Here's how I organize patterns for crafts:

Presentation1

I put them all in a separate baggie, along with the paper the children need to use for that pattern. I also label each pattern with what it is and the color it needs to be. I've taught the children to put the pattern back into the baggie once they are done using it.

Mailbox System
Also, I love using mailbox systems to hold activities for the children. They know to go to the labeled mailbox and choose an activity to complete while they are waiting for everyone else to finish.


In the mailbox above, there is an activity in each of the numbered mailbox slots. The children look through the binder below to find the activity they want to complete.



Each activity in the binder has a number. If they want the activity above, they will find it in the mailbox slot labeled #16. This way, they are not searching through the mailbox, trying to find what they want and pulling everything out and putting it back all messy. My students learn very early on that messy papers drive me crazy! And, I can honestly say that I rub off on them in a positive way. They'll call out anyone whose papers are dog-eared!

I also go one step further to help keep my students organized. They each have a folder with a menu inside that has a little image of each of the activities they can complete when they are done with their station work. It looks like this:


When they have finished an activity, they lightly shade in the image and cannot complete that same activity until they have completed them all. This helps them remember what they have done so they don't keep repeating activities.

The above activities come from my Writing Station Activities for Young Learners pack, but, you can do this system with any of your activities. However, if you already own this product, just email me and I will give you the menu I made. Oh, and today, I added one more activity to the pack. It's another survey:

Kindergarten and First Grade Writing Forms Part 1

Just download the product again to get it.

Procedures
The last tip I have for you, to help keep your classroom always looking perfect, is to enlist the help of your students. Don't think you always have to do it yourself. Everyone who comes into my classroom always asks me how I manage to keep it so neat, clean, and organized at all times of the day. It's really simple! Everything has a place, the children learn where that place is, and it is easy for them to put it away. It takes some time at the beginning of each school year to teach the children where everything goes, but, they catch on and, when they do, it's smooth sailing for the rest of the year!

I hope I have inspired you in some way, shape, or form, to start 2013 with a positive feeling about keeping your classroom and students organized.

The last thing I want to say is, one of my best blogging buddies, Alessia, from Mrs. Albanese's Class, is having an amazing New Year's Eve giveaway! What better way to start a new year, than by winning tons and tons of goodies for your classroom. You can enter this giveaway by clicking on the image below. Good luck to you!

NYE-giveaway
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18 comments:

  1. LOVE the idea about colouring in the menu picture of each station after students complete it! Brilliant and so easy to create! I'm having one of those "Why didn't I think of that moments???" right now!

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    Replies
    1. LOL! Glad I could make you see the light!
      Ѽ Lori
      Teaching With Love and Laughter
      luvyorkies@gmail.com

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  2. I love the menu idea too!! What a great idea- as always!!! :)

    Lisa
    Learning Is Something to Treasure

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much, Lisa! The menu has really changed my classroom!
      Ѽ Lori
      Teaching With Love and Laughter
      luvyorkies@gmail.com

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  3. Lori - you certainly are organized! I will take some of these tips for myself for the new year! I just loved reading all about your ideas and organizational tips! My mailbox is still a work-in-progress (don't get me wrong - I did the labels you sent me, laminated them and bought clips - just waiting for my husband to finish making it from the summer time! Oh, for next year now!)

    Thanks for posting about the giveaway (and for being a part of it!).

    Ѽ Alessia
    Mrs. Albanese’s Kindergarten Class

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL! Do I need to talk to hubby?!
      Ѽ Lori
      Teaching With Love and Laughter
      luvyorkies@gmail.com

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  4. omg! I put EVERYthing in baggies too!! Absolutely love your mailbox system- was totally talking about something similar to this with my teammate- I'm going to have to look closer at it now! Wonderful ideas as always!!
    Nicole
    Rowdy in Room 300

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    Replies
    1. I am so addicted to baggies! Easy and economical. Thanks for stopping by!

      Ѽ Lori
      Teaching With Love and Laughter
      luvyorkies@gmail.com

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  5. I love your writing organization! That is such a great idea. NOw I just need to find a place to put those cubbies in my teeny tiny room. :) You always have such great ideas! It seems like I pin everything you ever post! Thanks for sharing your great ideas.
    Sarah
    Sarah's First Grade Snippets

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    Replies
    1. Sarah, I hope you can find the space! Thanks for the kind words!

      Ѽ Lori
      Teaching With Love and Laughter
      luvyorkies@gmail.com

      Delete
  6. Wowie wow wow! Lori, your classroom looks fantastic! Thank you so much for sharing your fabulous ideas! I am just thrilled to be one of your followers! Happy New Year!

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    1. Thanks so much Khrys! That's so nice of you to say. Happy and Healthy New Year to you, too!

      Ѽ Lori
      Teaching With Love and Laughter
      luvyorkies@gmail.com

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  7. Lori - I love how organzied you are,... u are welcome to come to southern cal anytime to organize my piles I get every so often. Happy New Year friend.
    Vicky
    Traditions, Laughter and Happily Ever After

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    Replies
    1. I may just take you up on that offer! Happy New Year to you, too, Vicky!

      Ѽ Lori
      Teaching With Love and Laughter
      luvyorkies@gmail.com

      Delete
  8. I am inspired! I like to be organised, but I'm nowhere near this good! I love the mailbox and the individual menu for kids too!
    Thank you so much for sharing :)

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  9. Thank you so much for the Snow Match Unit from Mrs. Albanese Give Away. I was the winner and can hardly wait to use all the amazing things I received. I appreciate your hard work!
    Sincerely,
    Dru Moore

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    Replies
    1. That's great news, Dru! I'm jealous of all the goodies you won! LOL! Enjoy!
      Ѽ Lori
      Teaching With Love and Laughter
      luvyorkies@gmail.com


      Delete

Thank you for taking the time to comment. I love to read them!

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