A great teacher hack keeps us organized in the classroom! The following five ideas will help you save time and be more efficient. Each teacher hack will help keep your classroom running smoothly. I also have a freebie that I know you’re going to LOVE! Let’s get started!
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Teacher Hack #1: magnetic Spice Racks
Easily display or organize your read aloud books using magnetic spice racks! Stick the magnetic spice racks to your whiteboard or any other magnetic surface. You can display your daily read alouds, or use them to store previous books that you want to refer back to throughout the week’s lessons.
The magnetic spice racks that I use are really strong and hold up so well! I love not having to dig back through my bookshelf to refer to a book I read the week before. The pack I bought comes in a two-pack. I kept myself organized by storing the current week’s books on the top shelf and the previous week’s books on the bottom shelf.
Teacher Hack #2: vinyl work spots
My students love to work on the floor around our classroom. I use vinyl circle spots on our floor to help students know where they can sit during flexible seating time. Even though we go over “good fit spots” at the beginning of the year, it never fails that kids want to sit too close to one another, or try to sit in an unsafe spot. Placing vinyl circles around the room on your floor is an easy way to assure that everyone is working in a spot you approve of! You can say, “Find a spot!” and students will quickly find a pre-approved workplace. You’ll save time, and your students will transition smoothly and quickly!
If you don’t have hard floors to place your vinyl dots on, you can use Sit Spots on rugs and on carpet. BONUS TIP: Writing numbers or letters on the vinyl dots allow them to be used for fun math and literacy learning, too! Here’s an example: Tell your students, “Find a dot and sit on it. Write or draw three ways you can show that number on your whiteboards!” Vinyl work spots are fun, versatile, and time-saving!
Teacher Hack #3: binder cilps for mailboxes
Binder clips are my favorite way to label or number student mailboxes. Write the name or number with a silver or white chalk sharpie. You can use nail polish remover at the end of the year if you need to wipe the clips clean. This teacher hack is so much easier and more durable than sticky labels that peel off or come up at the edges.
Teacher Hack #4: shower rod anchor chart
This is one of my favorite organizational hacks! Use a magnetic shower rod to create an anchor chart holder! You can hang your anchor charts from the magnetic shower rod with pocket chart rings or large binder clips. A magnetic shower rod makes an easy, moveable, and adjustable anchor chart display for your whiteboard!
BONUS: You can hang multiple charts on the magnetic shower rod. Simply flip the paper over to display a new chart.
Teacher Hack #5: Emergency ring freebie
I saved the best for last! This organizational hack is one that I have used every year in my classroom. At the beginning of the year, after I receive my class list, I fill out the pages on what I call my “emergency ring.” What is an emergency ring? It’s a collection of papers that are attached with a binder ring. The papers contain IMPORTANT information that I may need in either an emergency situation, a field trip, or information a substitute might need to refer to if I am absent. These pages include things like: a class roster, medical alerts and allergies, emergency procedures (fire drill, tornado, lockdown, earthquake, or other drills your school may practice), parent/guardian phone numbers, and dismissal information.
In the event of an emergency, field trip, or drill, I always GRAB THIS RING on my way out of the classroom! This way, I always have a hard copy of any info I need for emergency dismissals, medical alerts, etc. *If you do not or cannot hang this ring by the door of your classroom, due to privacy reasons, you can hang it inside of a cupboard that is next to your door. The key is that it is within your reach as you are exiting the classroom.
I’ve turned my classroom emergency ring into a FREEBIE for you! Yay! The best part? It’s EDITABLE! You can use the tables I’ve provided to type in, or you can delete the tables completely and just add text boxes. Just hold punch and slip a binder ring through the corner. The size makes it super nice to fit into your teacher tote, or even clipped into your lesson plan binder.
If you’d like to share this activity with a colleague or want to save it to refer back to at a later time, feel free to PIN the image below to your Pinterest boards!