Saturday, August 8, 2015

Practicing What You Pin: A Game-Changer for Organization!

So, when I pinned this image from Brooke Brown's blog, Teaching Outside the Box, I was so confident that it would change everything about my lesson planning storage, that I IMMEDIATELY ordered a case of these boxes from Amazon!

Ladies and Gentleman... this may very well be one of the best organizational strategies that I've come across and it is going to be a GAME CHANGER for me!! You see, I hate file folders... mostly because I can't stand those stupid little plastic tabs they have because they always snap off whenever I open my filing cabinet. And then, there is the issue that when the file gets too "fat," with mentor texts or task card sets that I need to STORE WITH THE LESSON, LEST I FORGET ALL ABOUT THEM OR CANNOT FIND THEM FOR THE FOLLOWING YEAR (just me?!?), it starts to roll up which messes with my stored documents.

And I hate binders because I refuse to put holes in my fancy documents, like my anchor posters. So, that means I need those slippery clear page protector thingys, which always seem like a great idea, but I've found that they are actually one of those things that are much better in theory than practice! You see, while I may initially set my binder up, all organized-like with all my lesson's documents neatly encased in glossy splendor, I NEVER, and I mean EVER, put stuff back in those correctly because, well-ain't nobody got time for that!-so all my stuff winds up getting tossed into the binder, willy-nilly-like, and gets all squished around! And again, binders have no space for mentor texts or task cards that I use for a unit (because again, if I don't store those things with my lesson/unit plan, I will misplace them or forget all about them for the following year!)... so, basically, binders are worthless for me!

But these project cases?!? Genius, Brooke Brown!! Look at what I've done so far with my writing units:

Mentor texts and task cards fit right in the box!!

My anchor posters remain hole-less and squish-free! 

I'm so stoked! I've already put an order in for another case of cases. Game changer for sure!!

What is your method for lesson storage/organization. I'd love to hear about it :)

Happy Teaching!!

P.S. The writing units you see in this post are available in my TpT store. Since I am moving from 6th grade to 7th grade, I've been working all summer to revamp my units. My plan is to teach three narrative units, three inform/explain units, and three argument units throughout the year (along with some writer's notebook stuff, some Flash Fiction, spooky stories for Halloween, a research paper, and a end-of-the year writing project). My hope is to post a video about my strategies for teaching writing in middle school, so stay tuned!! If you are interested in checking out some of my *new* writing units, here's what I've got so far (keep checking the store for the additional units, as I will be posting them as I finish them!)

Narrative Writing (Vol.1): Writing About Lessons Learned
Narrative Writing (Vol. 2): Writing About Memorable Places
Narrative Writing (Vol. 3) Writing About Special Treasures

Inform/Explain (Vol. 1): "And the Winner Is..."


  1. Thanks for sharing this and for the box idea from the other blog, too. Has anyone tried doing this with some non-plastic alternative? I have found some "matchbox" style boxes which may suffice but I think it's too deep and finding them in quantities could be difficult. And I know they won't last as long or be as convenient. Surely there's a way to organize like this without putting more plastic in the environment....? Once I get back to the States I'll have to scour Hobby Lobby and Michaels!

  2. I have been doing this but with plastic... I don't feel too guilty because I feel like I will use them for years!