Articles for Teachers

Two Popular Ways to Organize a Classroom
By:Alycia Shapiro

Preparing a classroom each fall can be exciting, but also a little overwhelming. If you are a new teacher or have been teaching for several years, new ideas are always helpful. One of the main subjects teachers always want ideas on is classroom organization. With supplies, books, games, and manipulatives, there are many things that can clutter a classroom. Here are two popular ways a teacher can organize a classroom.

Organize by Centers

Centers are an easy and popular way to organize a classroom. When the room is organized this way, students will look forward to center time. One of the great things about centers is that they do more than just organize. They can be an essential part of reinforcing lessons and making free time productive.

Centers can include books, pretend play, math games, reading games, and more. This is appealing to children and will help keep the room organized. It is also a clear way for teachers to give instructions. When centers are clearly established, students know where to go and what to expect.

For center time to run smoothly, teachers can set a time limit for each center and then ring a bell or make an announcement when time is up. Students then rotate to a new center. This keep kids interested and forces each student to try new things. Teachers can also use centers as an incentive for students who need some motivation.

Organize by Rotation

Just like at home, students can easily become bored by having the same supplies, craft items, games, and toys to use at school. One way that teachers can organize is by rotation. This is a fairly new way to organize but it is gaining popularity among teachers who are looking for ways to keep their classroom fresh.

Organizing by rotation works like this:

At the beginning of the school year, teachers divide their craft items, games, books, hands on materials, and toys into 10 groups. This makes one group for each month that school is in session. When doing this, teachers should keep in mind any holiday or month appropriate items and make sure they get into the correct group.

After dividing the items, leave the ones out for the first month and store the rest in cubbies, storage units, or plastic trays labeled with each of the following months. The first day of each month, teachers simply take out the items for that month and store the items from the last month.

Students love the anticipation of going to school on the first day of each month and seeing new items out for their use. If there are some items that students are particularly fond of, the teacher can decide to keep them out longer. This may seem time consuming at first, but once everything is properly stored, switching out materials will be easy.

Keeping an organized classroom is important. If you are looking for a change, try one of these ways to organize your classroom and keep the clutter at bay.

Now that we've offered you a few tips on organizing your classroom. First you have to have items to organize! Check out the classroom rugs, book displays, cubbies for schools and other classroom furniture pieces at Alycia and the gang have put together a quality selection of affordable items for your school, clinic, daycare, or home.

Go to another board -