Happy Saturday, everyone! Today I'm going to share a new organizational tip that I just put to use! One of the first things that I got when I was a new teacher last year, was these adorable writing center strips from Caitlin over at Kindergarten Smiles.
They are so perfect for kindergarten since they have the word AND the picture. I cut them, laminated them, punched holes, and put them on binder rings. I only put a few at a time (usually the seasonal ones and a few general like colors and numbers). I hung these binder rings on my writing bulletin board so that they were easily accessible for students and they could take them and bring them to their desks whenever they needed to.
This system worked perfectly and I loved it. Except for the fact that I was left with a million extra sheets when they were not in use! Throughout the year, you would see me scrambling in my closet when a student asked me to spell a word and I remembered that I had a sheet with the word on it. Or on the rare occasion that I remembered the seasons were changing, I would have a moment of clarity in the morning when I said to myself "It's almost Christmas, I should probably add the winter sheets to the writing center and take away the fall ones." For the most part, I would open my closet and these cute little sheets would fall on top of me. Not a good system!
So, one of my first projects this summer was to organize these helpful yet unorganized tools. While in Big Lots one day, I saw this expandable file that looked like the perfect size. I snatched it up for only $3!
It turned out to have 14 tabs in it, so I divided all of the cards into the appropriate month (Halloween in October, Mother's Day in May, etc.) and put each month in its own section. Then, I used the last two sections for weather and word wall cards that I don't use too often and don't fit into a monthly category. This way, if a student needs to know how to spell one of those words, I'll know exactly where to find it! I used mini post-its to mark the tabs with the month or category so this way, if I decide a better way to organize them, I can easily remove the post-its and add new ones!
I am so excited to use this (and for my aide to see this- she will be beyond happy). I also can't wait to put my hands on a recipe box to start organizing my word wall words! I hope this little tip gives you some great ideas!