Thursday, June 23, 2011

Organization Freebies

If you use student "binders" or "folders" for parent communication, homework, and school reminders, here's a cover that you can use.  My school uses binders, and each student brings one as part of their school supplies.  In the past I have also used the plastic folders.  The regular folders just go through so much with little ones that they rarely last for the entire year.  I love using binders because I can organize them with classroom rules/behavior expectations, word wall words/language arts information, monthly homework calendars, updates, graded papers, notes to parents, etc.  

The cover that is shown in the first picture is something that I'm thinking about trying for this year (the student's name and picture).  During "meet the teacher night," one of the things on each student's "to-do list" is have a picture taken at the "photo station."  Usually one of my family members or a parent volunteer assists with this.  I'm hoping to get the pictures on as many binders as possible on the next day which is a work day.  If I have to do a few on the first day of school it should be manageable. The only draw back is the extra ink that is used.  Normally I just print the pages in advance then add a label with each student's name on it, but I would like to try it out.  One of my classroom jobs is a "binder passer" so I think this would be especially helpful at the beginning of the school year to save time and help students learn each other's names.  

There is a huge list of acronyms that can be used with all kinds of themes here.  It has all kinds of mascots and cute sayings.  Last year I had a "dot binder" because I had the "polka dot on black" pattern in my classroom.  The binder was called "Daily Organized Tasks." I didn't take any pictures of them, but I wish I had.  They turned out very cute, and my students did a great job of taking care of their binders and returning them each day.  

If a student purchases a binder that doesn't have a clear pocket in front, I just add a sheet protector at the front of the binder.  I prefer to have the clear cover in front, but this is another option.  Also when I used plastic folders, I placed several sheet protectors inside for various items (notes, homework, school forms/notes...).  The front sheet protector had the decorated page on it with the acronym. I have made a few covers:  beach, jungle, and ant.  I'll probably make a few more so please let me know if there's one that you'd love to have!  You can click on each picture to download the covers. 



  1. I'm going to try a polka-dot room this year, so I'd love to get a copy of the DOT cover you used!

  2. I love the information, this is what I'm hoping to do next year. I hope you don't mind I referenced your post in my blog tonight. I'm hoping to do a bear, bee or apple theme in my classroom with a hint of Gecko (since that's our mascot)

    I can't sleep trying to figure out what I'm going to do, and school starts in less than four weeks for me.

    Mrs. Hall's Fab Firsts

  3. I've always used STAR binders Students Taking Academic Responsibility- The parents lawyas love them and feel that it helps their kids stay organized.

  4. I have a FISH Book freebie on my blog that provides the same stuff! I love all the cute acronyms and LOVE the binders!! Parents really seem to like them to! Thanks for sharing.

    Beg, Borrow, Steal

  5. You reminded me I need to work on that! Thanks!!
    First Grade Blue SKiES

  6. Last year I used my students pictures too! It was so helpful for the kids to pass them out. It was also a great way for them to learn each others names quiickly!

    I love the jungle one!! I just might have to use it!!

  7. Thank you for the link to the list! I am doing FROG/S for next year and had not yet decided on a name for the folders I liked yet. I will have to mull these over and choose one. Thanks for posting yours, I will definitely model my cover after one of yours!

  8. Thank you for the Jungle one! I have been racking my brain for a new idea for an organizational binder since I am switching my classroom theme from bees to jungle. You have saved me a lot of time! :o)

  9. Thank you so much for all the great ideas. I am also doing a Beach theme and its always nice to see some new ideas. By the way I love your How "Tues" day Tips.

    Teaming Up To Teach


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