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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Organizing the School Filing Cabinet

In that frenzied time this past June called "Closing up the Classroom for the Summer", I decided to give myself the summer job of cleaning out the my file drawer at school.  Well, really it was more because I need more "tuck things away" space for the art supplies I had ordered for this new school year.  So as a result I decided to empty out the files in the top drawer of the my filing cabinet into a big sensory tub, thinking, "Oh, I'll take those home and organize them this summer."

Guess what?  Summer is six days to over, and those files have sat in the garage all summer.  I did at least straighten them up from their Willy Nilly sprawled-out status from the sensory bin.  I also covered them, as I seem to live in Pollen World here in central California, and I didn't want to bring any excess garage pollen into the house once I finally got around to - bringing them in the house.

And guess what?  Today is that day, so here they sit in my living room - (almost) pollen-free, but still unorganized.

Actually, I'm kind of motivated to do this job, because a)I really do like to organize things, and b)since this is my third year at this particular job, I feel like I have a better feel about what papers I really need in this filing cabinet.

One of the first areas I started working on was the "Calendar File".  We actually use several different calendars during our school year, but all of them use small pictures to mark the days.

In the past two years I stored these little pictures in a cute little bag like this:

However, I can't tell you how many times I sat on the classroom floor in front of the calendar  the past two years trying to look for the pictures I needed for that week/month.

Therefore, I have now moved them to a notebook like this:

I already had the plastic page protector - I believe it was originally intended for slides, but the ones you can buy for baseball cards would work as well.

I then sorted out the pictures.  I have the ones that we pretty much use every month:

Every Monday - Friday on our calendar is marked with a "School Day" picture, and every Saturday and Sunday get a "Stay at Home" picture.  Then when there is a special day off (such as Labor Day), I add a "No School" picture, to show that we were supposed to be at school that day, but it was a holiday.  (This helps the Little People differentiate between a weekend and a holiday).

Most often I will get a transparency marker and write the name of the person having the birthday on the birthday pictures (they're all laminated).

Also, we have a nurse picture, because we are lucky enough to have a wonderful preschool nurse that comes to visit our class once a month to talk about important health and safety issues.

 The second page are the "Special Occasion" pictures, that might get used once a year:

Although unfortunately, due to budget cuts we won't be using any Field Trip stickers this year, and we lost our 6-week music program and our monthly "Harvest of the Month" visits (not pictured) last year.  However, I'm keeping the pictures just in case...

Hopefully this system will save some time on those "Make Up the Calendar" days in the near future.

Now onto something else in those boxes...

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