Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Tips to Organize Your Workspace

Hey all!! In my last post I shared my workspace make over and as promised I am back to share some of my organizational tips that can be built into any work space. 

Specifically, two drawer units and three trays above.

 I like using the 3 drawer containers to separate stuff into categories as apposed to tying to organize 1 large desk drawer to accommodate everything.  (I'm not thrilled with the clarity of these pictures so I apologize in advanced) The drawers are labeled from top to bottom as follows:

Supplies: Adult scissors, staples, white out, 1 box of crayons (sometime the teacher needs to color too) and other miscellaneous supplies.

 Forms & Stickers: Bags of stickers, birthday certificates, home work passes, bus passes, etc.

 Swag: My swag drawer is my favorite drawer because it's the home for all my little personal items :)

These are typical swag drawer contents. Candy is a must. I usually have a bag of chocolate but it's summer so I've got Starbursts instead. Delsyum and tissues are not a staple but they're still in here from my last week of school when I was all kinds of sick. I also usually keep a bag of Halls cough drops & some Tylenol in here too but I need to restock. iPhone, classroom keys, and glasses go in here daily. 

Next there is the Take to The Office tray and the First Aid Center.

Take to the Office: Any notes that come in that day that need to go to the office, box tops, lunch money. Then if it's all in one place and my messenger or I bring the try with all of its contents down to the office in the morning. It's also not uncommon for one of my firsties to fish something out of their backpack that they were supposed to give me in the morning when we're packing up at the end of the day. When that happens it goes right in this tray so it's ready for the following morning. 

First Aid Center: I forgot to take a close up picture of the label but the small writing underneath the title label says *Nurse Passes * Band aids* Tooth envelopes* Anytime we send a kid to my school they have to bring a school wide pass we used filled out by the teacher so I keep them in here. I also have a sandwich baggies filled band aids.Finally, I CAN'T BELIEVE I DIDN'T TAKE A PICTURE. I keep tooth envelopes which are just the tiny manila envelopes with a tooth sticker on them. When a kid loses a tooth we just put it in the envelop, write their name on the front and put it in their take home binder.  (I will upload a picture tomorrow)The kid's know that I keep these things here which is also really helpful when they are needed and I have a sub.

My second set of drawers is labeled as follows...

Extended Learning - This is what our school calls our small group RTI time for literacy. Anything I am using for my lessons that week goes in this drawer.

Data to upload- This is where I keep progress monitoring papers that needs to be filed in each student's binder. (Notice it's full...I need to get better about filing as we go)

Meeting Notes: I keep a binder here that goes with me to every meeting that I take notes in. I also keep all handouts from meetings in here.

And last but not least, there is my Put Away & File tray. Anything that finds it's way to my desk that needs to go back to it's "home" goes here. Usually it's lesson plans or copies that need to go back to their correct file folder or binder. Sometimes it's are supplies that need to go back in the arts and crafts shelf. This was how it looked on the last day of school though. There is a bag of extra sharpened pencils, plastic spoons, a koosh ball that we use during phonemic awareness, and chocolate syrup from the ice cream sandwich sundaes we made the last full day of school. All of these things need to be put away. In the midst of the hustle and bustle of the day, I don't usually have time to put these things away. But I usually have enough time to throw them in this tray until I can get to them  so that they're not scattered all over my desk.

So those are a few ways I organize my space. I really like the 3 drawer units because you can label them whatever you want to fit your needs. I will be back through out the summer to show you some other ways that I {{try}} and stay organized around my room. Yes, emphasis on the word {{try}} because organization is and area that I am constantly struggling to maintain!!

This is one of my most popular blog posts from last summer so I thought I would like it up and come join Cara for the #throwbackthrusday fun!! :)


  1. I LOVE your "to put away and file", "take to office", "first aid center", and SWAG places! I am totally implementing these in my room this fall. Thank you for sharing your ideas :-)
    First Grade FUNdamentals

  2. Great ideas. It feels so great when things have their own place.

    Yearn to Learn Blog

  3. I'm loving that "swag" drawer!! Chocolate and candy are always a must!!!
    P.S. we drove through Loveland today!! The lake is beautiful!
    Michelle @ Smitten With First

  4. I just discovered your blog and am your newest follower! I am a new blogger and would love for you to check out my blog!

    Teaching Maddeness

  5. I love the "To put away & file" compartment! Great idea! {I think I would need about 3 compartments for this concept!} :)

    EduKate and Inspire

  6. Look at you all organized! I love it!! I really need a first aid drawer this year!! I could NEVER find my dang band-aids!! HA!!! So glad you linked up!!! XOXO

  7. I love this. I don't have all of that space right now to do it all but it's amazing. I am definitely going to implement a messenger tray. (And maybe a chocolate syrup shelf)

    You Might Be a First Grader….

  8. Great ideas! I love everything having a place. *LOVE* your swag drawer! =)

    A+ Firsties

  9. thank you for sharing all your great ideas! I need to go get some of those 3 drawer things!
    I also need a "put away and file" tub!

    Liz at http://kindergarten-blossoms.blogspot.com.au/

  10. Love the swag drawer. I just say odds and ends but swag is way more fun.