Organizing Student Workbooks
Most of our curriculum comes with a consumable workbook. Math, ELA, Science, Social Studies-all of them. I love this because I don’t have to copy all those assignments. I hate this because it’s SO MUCH PAPER!
In Room 10, we have whiteboard tables, not desks. I only allow students to keep an assignment book/agenda, homework folder and reading book bag under their chairs. This leaves the dilemma of what to do with all their workbooks! If we keep them on a shelf, then they have to constantly get up to get them. If we keep them intact, then it means any lessons we skip are kept in the workbook and they have to constantly flip past them.
I’ve solved this by tearing up all our workbooks. At the beginning of the year, I take out every assignment in every book and organize them. For example, I go through the math workbook and tear out all the Chapter Ones. Then I staple each assignment and homework set, paperclip all the pages for a single type of assignment together and then put them in a magazine holder with that chapter name on it.
In this box, you can see all the in-class packets and homework assignments have been sorted and papercliped, and then organized in order.
This allows me to quickly flip through the assignments as I’m teaching the chapter and decide which lessons I want to do out of the workbook. I just pull that paperclipped group of papers out of the box and pass them out to the kiddos. They never see the assignments we skip, and they only have to focus on what I’ve just given them.
I leave the assignments that we skipped in the box so I can use them for review or extra assignments later in the year.
This system has made all the difference in my classroom. Students never loose their entire workbook because they only get one assignment at a time. They can easily turn in an assignment to me as it’s already torn out of the book. They don’t rip it in half tearing it out themselves. And I can easily pick and choose which assignments, and in which order, I want to teach.
I do this with all my workbooks, and I have magazine holders for each subject/chapter. It also visually lets me see how well we’re doing with pacing, even though I also using a pacing guide. Viva la magazine holders!! 😉