Friday, December 28, 2012

Organize Me.... Please Linky

I am linking up with Hope over at Second Grade Shenanigans to share some of my organization tips from the past and to also share some of my resolutions!

My resolution is to organize my fonts.  I sense that I would do it a little quicker if he was here to help!

And now for a couple of ways I organize my classroom!
 I have shared before the way I organize my letters.  Perhaps most of you already do this, but if you haven't done it, trust's worth the time!!  I had a parent get it started for me years ago...and each year when I add letters, I have a new parent to organize them!  I bought this super cute file case at Walmart... then I separated each of my letters into piles of each letter...then put them in Ziploc bags. The bags are then put into the corresponding section in the case.  Voila!

Well, one of the best things I have ever done maybe...
Last year I got so frustrated when I tried to find a book I was looking for -and couldn't remember where it was.  So I decided to fix that problem once and for all.  
Here's what I did:

Little by little, I would take a group of books from a location in my room and type the titles in a word document. At the top of the list, I would type the location of the book- which most times also serves as the subject of the group (like: Science bucket, or my library, or red dot books, or listening station, etc)  Then I would get another group of books and do the same thing.  By the end of it, I had a list compiled of every book in my classroom, listed under where it was located.
I thought it was going to take forever, but honestly it didn't take that long.
Has it made life easier?? YES!

This is what the document looks like in reference to the subjects:
 Here are the 5 gallon bags and baskets where those books are found:

Not only can I find books, but I can use the search function in Word to search for a
specific letter or sound...or word.
Here is a picture of the "search" in a document
 For instance, last week I needed a book that had an r controlled vowel in it.  I decided my best bet was the word "more" I type it in the search function box and in the document it found "Bear wants More" and "Always Room for One More."  
A few days later, one of the other teachers in first grade came over and asked if I had a certain Frog and Toad book...of course, I couldn't be 100% quickly I typed in "frog" in the document's search box and although I have several of them, I didn't have that specific one, but I knew immediately.
 Easy enough, right?
Much better than running around, poking through baskets or shelves!!

Here is a picture of what one of the pages in the document looks like for authors
which are organized in the bags on the shelf:
 This is where you would find the levelized "dot" and thematic books listed in the document:

Now, keep in mind, the spelling/capitalization isn't always perfect in  the document...I was in a hurry and I keep meaning to go back through it and fix things.  It will happen...eventually!

Of course, I also have all my books in the listening center listed, the books
in my non-fiction baskets listed...everything!
Oh, and I am sure to add all titles that I purchase or order from Scholastic as I get them!

Hope this gives someone out there some useful ideas. 
You may not like doing it, but you will be SO happy if you do!

Link up now and share yours!
(and there is a flash giveaway to enter, too!)


  1. That's how I organize my classroom letters and it makes my life so much easier! I have been meaning to catalogue my books too. Maybe that should be my resolution!

    Sara :)
    Smiling In Second Grade

  2. I am in awe of your organization...organizing makes me happy.

    Crisscross Applesauce in First Grade

  3. Oh.. your SO good..I deff need to do the same thing, I have zip lock baggies everywhere..
    I totally just organized my pinterest boards.. that was one of my resolutions.. Happy New Year Jenn xoxo

  4. NOw I feel like going into my classroom and doing some organizing. Almost... Maybe after the New Year. Ha! You have wonderful organization!
    Sarah's First Grade Snippets

  5. I love your letter organization. I may have to follow!
    -Lovely Nina

  6. I love your book organization! I am going to have to make this my new years resolution! Thank you for the tip!
    Crayons and Curls

  7. OMG!!!! I love the letter organization!!! Where has that idea been all of my life!!!! if only I could get organized to do it!!!!

    The Daily Alphabet

  8. Love it! Thanks for sharing!

    I can't wait to see how you'd organize your font. I need some help in that area :)

  9. Can you get a 2 for 1 deal with your posterboy friend?! My fonts need organizing too! Seriously, I would love to know how you decide to organize your fonts. Any ideas for organizing graphics, frames, borders, etc.?

    An Apple a Day in First Grade

  10. I love your "Hey girl" picture. Too funny :)

  11. Wow! I wish I was even close to being as organized as you are! Thanks for sharing the bulletin board letter system, I have the perfect parent who would love to do that!

    Your Hey Girl picture is so funny! I really need to get on top of my graphics and fonts! I spend almost as much time searching for them as I do creating with them!
    Happy New Year, Jennifer!