Thursday, 10 September 2015

Practical Storage Options

Over the past few years I have been attempting to find storage options for my classroom that look neat and as well as being practical and simple to use. This year in particular, I have very little built-in storage options (shelves, presses, etc) and really needed to come up with creative ways to store things in an organised, tidy manner. Here are some organisational methods I am currently using in my classroom:

1. Long term storage:
I store decorations, resources, games, books, art supplies, etc. in these storage boxes. I have stacked them under the workbench style counter in my room. I use similar boxes to hold paint and paint brushes in our art press so that when we are painting, we can take out the box with all of the supplies we will need and put it back when we are finished. It also makes moving classroom every year much easier!
Homebase Storage Boxes

2. Whiteboard storage: 
I use these green Ikea boxes to hold my class whiteboards. When we are using the whiteboards in a lesson, the table leader collects their box and distributes the whiteboards to their classmates. The boxes work well in preventing the whiteboards from being damaged. Within each box, each group has a blue box for holding their whiteboard markers, Pritt sticks and scissors. 
Green Ikea Whiteboard Boxes
Blue Ikea Stationary Boxes
3. Flashcard/behavioural management storage options:
I have attached these wall pockets to my desk to hold various items I want to have easy access to. At the moment it contains lollipop sticks with the children's names on them, my yellow and red behaviour cards and various vocabulary flashcards.
Ikea Wall Pocket
4. Worksheet storage:
This expandable folder is divided into different subject areas, a compartment for school notes, another for staff meeting notes, another for 'Tomorrow's Work' and a 'Work Children Have Missed' section. This storage system works well as long term storage for worksheets as well as providing an easy way to file spare worksheets without having to deal with folders and plastic pockets. 
Eason Expanding Folder
5. Drawer storage:
Using drawer dividers helps me to keep my desk drawers organised while keeping everything visible and easily accessible in them. 
Ikea Drawer Dividers
6. Teacher book storage:
This year I'm storing my teacher books in these Ikea magazine holders. They are very durable, bright and help to keep my books organised. 

Ikea Magazine Holders

7. 'Busy Bee Work' storage:
This year, I have given all of the children a display book filled with worksheets and activities I have found on Teachers Pay Teachers. They keep this folder on their desk for when they have finished work early (this is really useful to have with a combined 4th and 5th class!). When they have completed all of the worksheets in their folder, they then get a new batch to put in and complete. 
8. Poster storage:
A rectangular bin can be used to store rolled up posters. Posters can also be stacked down the two sides of the bin (as is often not the case in a round bin) so that you can keep posters you use regularly nice and flat.

9. Task card/C.D. storage: 
I store C.D.s, D.V.D.'s, Maths cards, task cards, etc. in these baskets from Dealz. 
Dealz Baskets
10. Stationary Storage:
Whiteboard markers, spare pencils, pencil parers and rubbers that are used by me and the children (if they are missing their own), sit on my desk in these mesh stationary holders from Ikea. They are easy to grab when needed.
Ikea Stationary Storage Baskets

11. Ziploc Bags:
I keep a box of these at all times in my classroom. I use them for so many things: to store cables, flashcards, resources for each literacy station,  SESE resources, to divide out science equipment for each group in preparation for an experiment, etc.

I hope you found some inspiration on how to organise your classroom in this post. I am by no means an expert when it comes to keeping my classroom organised and tidy, but I have found these systems to work well for me over the past few years.
If you have found this post useful don't forget to check out some other posts in my Back to School Series for more ideas and inspiration.  

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