18 Amazing Classroom Organization Tips & Tricks

Amazing Classroom Organization IdeasSummer has finally arrived for me! And somehow one week of summer vacation has me itching to plan for next school year or at least for the cute pinterest inspired part of starting a new school year. Not so much the actual work part though! Keep reading for some awesome classroom organization ideas!

too busy organizing pins

Ready to join me in some vicarious organization enabled by Pinterest?

Here are my favorite classroom organization finds shared by some very creative teachers. Click each picture to head on over to their blogs:

1. Sort construction paper into a filing box.

No more random crumpled edges & you can easily spot any colors you are running low on. So much better than my current system of shoving construction paper into drawers & keeping my fingers crossed that I’ll have enough of each color when I need it.

construction paper filefrom Diane at teachwithme.com

2. Store math games in plastic bags & hang them on a towel rack.

I’m so doing this for my math workshop menu choices next year! I had a hard time keeping enough supplies out for multiple math games at a time without it looking like a small hurricane has blown through my classroom so this looks like a perfect solution.

busybags from small potatoesfrom Arlee at Small Potatoes

3. Store base ten blocks in supply caddies.

I spent this entire school year thinking I didn’t own any of these blocks until afterschool on our very last day when I discovered my dusty class set of foam base ten blocks! So frustrating but at least I’ll be ready for next year. This idea is brilliant! When the kids clean up they get to sort ones, tens, & hundreds one more time.

base ten blocksfrom Sally at Elementary Matters

4. Label, label, label!

I had a really hard time choosing just one adorable & perfectly labeled picture from this gorgeous classroom. Seriously, you must click the photo below and give yourself some time to take it all in! Amazingly cute & functional! As my good friend Liz Lemon would say, “I want to go to there!”

table supply basketsfrom Mel D. at Seusstastic Classroom Inspirations

5. Then add more labels!

I don’t know how I’ve been living all this time without knowing that self adhesive chalkboard vinyl exists! So many fun possibilities starting with these fun teacher supply jars.

chalkboard cupsfrom the x-acto website

6. Color code your curriculum files by subject.

One of my big summer goals this year is to purge my files and hopefully eliminate one of my file cabinets. If I survive the file downsizing this will be my next project.

filesfrom Angela at Primarily Primary

7. Sort extra crayons by color.

Wouldn’t it be great if this eliminated some of the daily, “Where’s my (fill in any color here) crayon?” Maybe it was just the group of kiddos I had this year but missing crayons was quite a frequent (& dramatic) event. And I love anything that incorporates another rainbow into my classroom!

crayon cupsfrom Bethany at Ship Shape First Grade

8. Use plastic dishpans to store classroom library books.

I am a girl who loves her plastic containers a little too much so I thought I had seen all of the classroom storage options at this point. I am so happy to be wrong! These are amazing! I love that they are clear and wide to store odd sized books. This entire classroom is so beautiful & very organized. Click through to see more!

blue library 1from Eloiseney

9. Store earbuds in a plastic bead box with numbered sections.

This year was my first year to have the kids bring in headphones to use and it was a hot mess! I had kids losing headphones left & right not to mention that some kids brought really big and really expensive ones to school which were hard to store & gave me some serious anxiety about anything happening to them. I’m hoping to encourage next year’s kids to just bring simple earbuds and then we are going to give this box storage a whirl.

headphonesfrom Brittany at Inspire.Love.Learn.

10. Store extra scrapbook & construction paper by color.

I love using scrapbook paper but I really hate how spendy it is. And I hate it even more when I see kids destroying the scraps or just dumping them once they are finished. This year I had a tub for kids to save the scraps in but having all colors in one tub made it time consuming to dig through when we needed more for a new project. I don’t know if I can fit something like this in my room space wise for next year but I’m going to try to make it work as Tim Gunn would say πŸ˜‰

paper storagefrom Rachel at I Love My Three Sons

11. Set up a check out station for your classroom library

I love how you could reuse this from one year to the next using class numbers rather than names. It might be a little ambitious for my first graders to manage at the start of the school year but I think by mid-year they will be up for the challenge. This is another photo that leads to an amazingly inspiring classroom tour so be sure to click through to see the rest of this room!

library check outfrom I Love Labels

12. Label & separate each child’s crayons on the group supply caddy.

I always struggle with class supplies and I feel like I’ve tried everything from individual pencil boxes to store everything for each child to group supply baskets with no names on anything. I like this idea because it meets somewhere in the middle. I’m getting ready for my 10th year of teaching and I’m pretty sure I’ve used 9 different ways to organize the supplies. Maybe this will be the one to stick!

table suppliesfrom Karen at Flamingo Fabulous in Second Grade

13. Store emergency sub plans in a well labeled container.

I’ve always done emergency sub plans in a binder but I like this idea even more- you could put read alouds & any other needed materials right in with the plans. This way it would definitely be easy to spot too!

sub tubfrom Melissa at Teach Bake Love

14. Gather copies & materials for the whole week in one spot.

I used some rainbow dividers from Lakeshore for this same type of storage but I could never fit everything I needed intoΒ  each day’s container. I love how roomy these bins are and that they stack to save on counter space. Especially since I have no free counter space at this point!

Weekly OrganizationFrom Alison at Rockin’ and Lovin’ Learnin’

15. Store ipods in labeled caddies.

Since I’m busy organizing my imaginary classroom this evening I’m going to store my imaginary ipods in these cute containers. Fingers crossed I’ll have some real technology to store in the future!

ipod listening centerFrom Molly at Lucky to Be in First!

16. Separate teaching resource books by topic.

I spend way too much time squinting at the teeny tiny titles on the spines of skinny teaching resource books trying to find stuff. This will save me so much time and hopefully eliminate eye strain too!

teacher book storageFrom Clutter-Free Classroom

17. Store puzzles in pencil pouches.

I am in favor of anything that means I can get rid of the severely abused cardboard boxes my rainy day puzzles live in! Such a great idea! I’m putting these pouches on my back to school shopping list.

puzzle storageFrom Kelly at The Navy Stripe

18. Sort prep materials for aides & volunteers in plastic drawers.

Somehow I think this system will work much better than my current system, especially because my current system is one giant pile of papers with post-its barely hanging on!

teacher job storagefrom Anna at Crazy for First Grade

Β Doesn’t it all just make you want to head to the Container Store immediately?!

whitney and lc are excited

image credits: giphy, KG Fonts,Β  all other images belong to the linked blogger or website owner, please let me know if you would like your photo/link removed from this list


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  1. says

    Hi Diana,

    Love all these storage ideas and yes it does make me want to buy containers not just for the classroom and teaching materials but for the home work station too! Hehe.

    Thank you for adding me to all your boards on Pinterest – they are awesome!


    • Diana says

      Hi Yara,
      I’m glad I’m not the only one who gets excited by plastic containers! πŸ˜‰ Thanks for your nice comment & for joining my boards too. I hope you are having a great summer!
      Diana πŸ™‚

  2. Anna says

    I loved this!! We just moved from NC to AL and, although the military paid for the move, we had to move ourselves. So my husband asked that I sell all my plastic containers – why store storage bins? The deal was I could buy more once I got a job down here. Deal!! Turns out, I got a job offer our first day in town!! I can’t wait to go buy new containers! And it’s nice to know other teachers are crazy about organizers like me! πŸ˜‰

    • Diana says

      Hi Anna! What a nice husband you have… buying new containers is always more fun! Good luck at your new school πŸ™‚

  3. says

    Oh my goodness!! What an awesome list!! πŸ™‚ My favorite tip is using a caddy for Base 10 blocks…that’s GENIUS. I always loathe passing them out and collecting them again and then finding a tiny ones block on the floor hours later haha. I’ll definitely be using that!

    One thing I’d say is that I tried that same case for earbuds last year and it was a hot mess!! If you will be managing it I’m sure it will be fine, but I expected my kids to be able to get them out and put them back neatly…it didn’t work out. I used one of those hanging jewelry organizers (about $10 at Marshalls or TJMaxx), the ones with all of the pockets. I put little cards with student numbers inside each pocket, and their earbuds went in the pocket. It was a PERFECT solution…the kids could use it completely independently and it was never a mess. Wish I had a picture, but just wanted to suggest that! πŸ™‚

    Awesome list!!!

    Sun, Sand & Second Grade

    • Diana says

      Hi Briana!I had the exact same problems with the ones pieces being discovered in the most random places later too so hopefully this will work out better for us both! And thank you for letting me know about the earbud case… I was totally going to try it but you’re right I want the kids to manage it not me so I’m going to try your hanging jewelry organizer instead. That is so clever of you! Thanks for your sweet comments πŸ™‚ Diana

  4. says

    WOW!!!! Thank you so much for featuring my organization bins on your blog! I feel like a celebrity. I absolutely LOVE my bins. I have had them for YEARS…at least 15. I got them at either Office Max or Office Depot. They are wonderful because they fit everything I need for the week in there (papers, books, manipulatives, etc.) Again…thank you!
    Rockin’ and Lovin’ Learnin’

    • Diana says

      Oh you are too sweet Alison! I have been on a hunt this summer for bins just like yours because they just look perfect for my classroom too! I hope you are enjoying your summer! πŸ™‚

  5. Stacey says

    Hi! Can you tell me where you bought your book baskets? I’ve been looking at dishpans but I love how yours are transparent and not white or blue!!

  6. Dwenette Stevenson says

    To number your iPads or iPods just use a picture of the number and save it to the home screen. Helps to quickly identify each one.

  7. Jess says

    Gallon size zip lock bags work well for puzzles too. I cut out the picture on the front of the box and stick it in the bag with the pieces and use a marker to write the number of pieces on the bag. It’s cheaper than pencil cases and students can actually see which puzzles they are putting together πŸ™‚

  8. Dee says

    Thank u for these great ideas! I love scouring any dollar store for interesting storage containers!

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