December 28, 2012

Organization Resolutions

Today I'm linking up with Hope from Second Grade Shenanigans and posting my organization resolutions for the new year. I love to be organized. I completely reorganized my classroom this summer. I also stalk Pinterest for amazing organization ideas. I am totally capable of implementing the great ideas and getting organized, but I cannot seem to STAY organized. It's a work in progress....

What's Working

Plastic containers are my saving grace. My room would be a disaster without them. This summer I replaced almost all of them because I have a deep need to have them match. I bought blue Ikea bins to house all my picture books (it took 60 bins, thank goodness I have a loving and understanding husband). I also bought a lot of blue Dollar Tree bins to put my math manipulatives in. I also went to a multitude of Targets to find those great rainbow colored book bins to organize my shelves.

I started using and love it! I have an intern on my team and I need to get her my plans in advance so she can work on hers. I'm able to make all my plans online and then email them to my team. Then we go over them at our weekly meeting and make any changes necessary.  My planning has become so much more organized! I have a folder on my computer that I save all my plans to and I print out a copy and put it in my teacher binder.

What I'm Working On

Resolution #1: So all those gorgeous containers... not so organized on the inside. I ended buying most of them right before school started and I ran out of time to fully organize and label each one. It's definietely a resolution of mine to finish that this year. I want them completely organized with cutesy labels on each one :-)

Resolution #2: Keep my desk clean! I keep telling myself I won't leave school until it is cleared off. It doesn't happen. I teach after school classes and by the time they are over I'm tired and starving and want to go home. I have tons of nice organization tools to help me, but I'm just lazy about it. I get so embarrassed when another teacher comes to drop something off at my desk and they can't find a clean spot and have to resort to laying it on my chair. Arg... I NEED to get better at this one!

Resolution #3: I want to digitally organize my books. My picture books are sorted by AR level and are super easy to find (as long as the kiddos put them back correctly...). Chapter books are organized by series and are fairly easy to find. My problem is that I keep buying duplicates because I forget which books I have. I order a lot of books from Amazon and Scholastic and I tend to make my orders when I'm at home and don't check all my book bins to see if I already have a copy. A few years ago I started cataloging all my books on It worked great and solved that problem. I was even able to tag books so I could find special books as needed (oh, you need a book on butterflies or Halloween or plants or sharing... I knew which books I had for that category and where they were). But my laziness interfered again. :-(  Sometimes I order hundreds of books at a time and don't want to wait to catalog them all before I add them to my library. So I got way behind. Once I started to get behind I just stopped adding books to my account altogether. I think I have less than half of my books cataloged now, which doesn't help me too much. This summer I plan on re-inventorying my whole library and update my Library Thing account.

So there's my update on my organization. I'm improving, but I definitely have a way to go! Thanks to Hope for hosting this linky so I could write my resolutions down and hold myself accountable for them! Check out all the great posts at Second Grade Shenanigans.


  1. Thanks for the reminder about Library thing!! I know I have an account and everything, but--like you--I never completed the project! I'm adding it back on my list!
    Karen :o)
    Mrs. Stamp's Kindergarten

  2. I love your plastic bins. I hear ya about the trouble with keeping your desk clean. I always arrive at school an hour and a half early...but when students leave I am ready to leave too. The time I get everything else set and attend any meetings the last thing I want to do is clean my desk. However, it's a great feeling to come in the next morning with the room looking all neat and organized.

    Elementary School Garden

  3. We love your organizing post Caitlyn...Thank You!!! We just became your 3rd Follower on TPT & your 7th Blog Follower:-) Hope you are enjoying your Winter Break & have a Happy 2013!!!

    Victoria & Tricia
    2 Super Teachers

  4. Caitlin I love your organizing post and your blog looks great! I have the same exact ssue with my desk. I figure that it is more important that things are organized for the kids and that they can find things that they need then for my desk to be neat. As long as I can find stuff on my desk! I also had a wonderful volunteer who used to be a K teacher and she said something along the lines of you can either have "productive chaos" (as far as being neat and clean) or spend too much time on neatening thing up and not on curriculum and planning, and the kids. Good point of view . I also LOVED her saying, you're busier than "a one-armed paper hanger". Lol!