Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Organizing Math Materials {CFC Project 2013 Challenge #9}

If you are just joining us, you'll want to start here or check out my Clutter-Free Guide to Organizing and Managing Your Classroom.

I used to be Team Language Arts, but lately my interest has totally shifted to Team Math. I still enjoy teaching ELA, but Math Workshop is my absolute favorite part of the day. This week (and next week) we're going to focus on getting organized when it comes to math.

Because let's face it...there are lots of little manipulatives and game pieces to deal with.

Your task for the next two weeks is to organize your math materials. I decided it would be best to break it down into two focus areas. Week one will be your manipulatives and games. Week 2 will be your teaching materials (resources, curriculum, printables, charts, etc).

The best approach to this would be to go through the steps I outlined for the classroom in general, but focus now specifically on all things math related.
Think about what manipulatives you really use and need. Decide which ones drive instruction and student learning and which ones are simply taking up space. I've got more tips coming, but first you need to purge and declutter so we can organize what's left.

Below is a picture from Mrs. Bond's Classroom showing her math manipulatives organized in storage drawers. I've sung their praises before, but I can't say it enough. They really are awesome.

I use them for my emergency sub plans.

I use them for some of my math workshop materials.

However, I really think they are great for storing math manipulatives because:
  • They slide out all the way so your friends can take them to a work area
  • They are clear and clear is good
  • They are easy to label
  • They are relatively inexpensive...not free...not cheap...but, not too bad. 
Definitely worth the investment.

Below are some links to past blog posts I've written that I think you'll find useful.

On Friday, I'll put up the first Linky Party related to the Clutter-Free Classroom PROJECT. The Linky will be ongoing and you can always jump in and link up at anytime. If you don't have a blog you can respond to the prompt in the comment section on Friday's post. Below is this week's prompt. Keep these questions in mind as you take your pictures:

  • Show us how you store your math manipulatives?
  • Tell us about what you decided was simply taking up space and not helping teach math.
  • Share your tips for organizing your math supplies.classroom organization tips classroom organization ideas classroom organization supplies classroom storage classroom management classroom arrangement classroom organization skills organization ideas for the classroom organization ideas for teachers organization ideas for elementary classrooms decluttering a classroom declutter classroom before pictureskindergarten first grade second grade third grade fourth grade fifth grade sixth grade preschool 1st grade 2nd grade 3rd grade 4th grade 5th grade 6th grade time management, professional organizer, ways to get organized, organizing products, helping kids get organized, organizing teachers, the organized classroom, tips for getting organized tips for classroom organization storage manipulatives school supplies math workshop math manipulatives organizing a math center

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