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Classroom Organization: Room Arrangement

Having a good room arrangement is one of the most vital factors to having an organized classroom.

By simply moving furniture you can eliminate the conditions for many behavior problems. By getting rid of clutter, distractible children have an easier time paying attention. By moving a student away from the door, confrontations and distractions are diminished. It simply makes sense to avoid problems.

 
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Quick Links

 

Basics
 
  • Make sure there is enough room between all furniture for you and your students to walk.  Take wheelchairs and walker into consideration, if necessary.
  • Arrange tables and/or desks so you can see everyone and everyone can see you at all times.
  • Avoid rearranging your furniture for different activities, especially if you are upstairs. The noise can be extremely distracting to classrooms below.
  • Designate a place for backpacks and outerwear and enforce it. Don't let students put these items under their table or desk.
  • Put out only the things that you need. Store extra supplies in a closet, cabinet or covered box.
  • Reduce clutter by storing things in cabinets, closets, or drawers. If you have more things than places to put them, ruthlessly purge to have only what is current, in good shape, and really needed.
  • Reduce visual distractions by using large storage containers, banker's boxes, or copy paper boxes to store things that you are not currently using.
  • Sit distractible students away from the door, windows, or computers.
  • Never place your desk with your back to the students or the door.
  • Place the things you need in the area you need them.
  • Don't let the placement of your overhead screen keep you from a good room arrangement. Buy a white shower curtain from the dollar store and affix it using double-sided foam tape. Attach the tape to the wall and give it a few hours or overnight for the adhesive to set up.
  • Be flexible.   If a room arrangement is not working, change it.  Eventually, you will come up with the ideal arrangement for your current situation. Just remember, next year you may need something totally different!
Arranging Space in the Classroom
United Nations
(www.unicef.org)
Arranging Your Classroom
American Federation of Teachers, United States.
(www.aft.org)
Back to School Teacher Tips
United States
(www.squidoo.com)
Classroom Architect
Arrange your room on line.
United States
(classroom.4teachers.org)
Classroom Arrangement
Northwest Educational Technology Consortium, United States.
(www.netc.org)
Classroom Environment: The Basics
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States.
(www.learnnc.org)
Classroom Organization
United States
(www.mea-mft.org)
Classroom Organization
United States
(middleschool.suite101.com)
Classroom Organization: The Physical Environment
United States
(content.scholastic.com)
Class Set Up Tool
United States
(teacher.scholastic.com)
Creating a Random Seating Plan
Canada
(www.canteach.ca)
Design a Classroom
United States
(www.atschool.org)
Effective Classroom Arrangement
American Federation of Teachers, United States.
(www.aft.org)
Environments that Promote Learning
United States
(classroom.4teachers.org)
5 Ideas for Arranging the Desks in Your Classroom
United States
(www.worksheetlibrary.com)
How to Arrange Classroom Furniture
United States
(www.ehow.com)
How to Organize an Elementary Classroom
United States
(www.ehow.com)
How to Set Up Computers in Your Classroom
United States
(teacher.scholastic.com)
Keep or Toss – Asking the Hard Questions
United States
(www.smead.com) 
One Room, Many Uses
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States.
(www.learnnc.org)
Reading Rockets: Classroom Arrangement
Department of Education, United States.
(www.readingrockets.org)
Room and Materials Arrangement
United States
(www.comp.org)
Seating Arrangements
Huntington College, Huntington, Indiana, United States.
(www.huntington.edu)
Seating Chart Template
United States
(office.microsoft.com)
Set Up an Effective Room Arrangement
United States
(office.microsoft.com)
Setting Up Your Classroom
United States
(www.eduplace.com)
Setting Up Your Classroom
Preschool ideas.
United States
(members.tripod.com)
Setting up Your Classroom for Success
Use PowerPoint to make seating arrangements.
United States
(office.microsoft.com)
Training Room Design
United States
(www.nwlink.com)
Working with Available Space
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States.
(www.learnnc.org)

 

Feng Shui
 

We are by no means experts in Feng Shui, but we are interested in it and have found it effective. At the risk of angering experts we feel that the essence of Feng Shui is balance. Balance between light and dark, restful and stimulating, rough and smooth, hard and soft, and so on.

Classroom Feng Shui
United States
(www.classroomfengshui.com)
Classroom Solutions
United States
(www.abundantspace.com)
Discover Some Useful Classroom Feng Shui Tips
United States
(www.fengshuicrazy.com)
Feng Shui for the Classroom
National Education Associationm United States.
(www.nea.org)
Feng Shui in the Classroom
United States
(www.teachertipstraining.suite101.com)
Feng Shui in the Classroom
United States
(www.biophile.com)
Feng Shui Learning Spaces
United States
(www.tabithamiller.com)
Space Craft: Giving Your Space the Right Design
United States
(www.edutopia.org)
The Role of Feng Shui in the Classroom
United States
(www.zimbio.com)

 

Teacher's Desk
 
  • If you forget about things that you file away, store them in a file box on top of your desk instead.
  • Desk pad/calendar combinations look like a good idea, but are always covered with stuff. Use a wall calendar instead.
  • In general, the more stuff you can put on the wall by your desk or in a file, rather than on your desk, the better.
  • Store only the supplies you need at your desk. Store extra desk type supplies somewhere else.
  • Keep supplies in a container that has a handle so you can take it with you, such as a stand-up silverware tote, a sectioned basket, or a basket with plastic drink cups to create sections.
  • Don't buy extra-large storage containers. Use glass jars, plastic containers and cardboard boxes that you would otherwise recycle.
  • When in doubt, use containers with tops for small items such as paper clips.
  • Items you can buy in the kitchen section such as silverware trays are generally cheaper than desk organizers but work just as well.
How to Clean Up Your Desk
United States
(www.wikihow.com)
How to Organize Your Desk
United States
(www.wikihow.com)
How to Organize Your Desk and Keep it Organized
United States
(www.bremercommunications.com)
How to Organize Your Work Space
United States
(www.ehow.com)
Less Stress: Declutter Your Desk
United States
(www.soyouwanttoteach.com)
Less Stress: Declutter Your Inbox
United States
(www.soyouwanttoteach.com)
Organize Your Desk in 8 Steps
United States
(www.soyouwanttoteach.com)
Organizing Your Desk
Requires registration (free).
United States
(www.medscape.com)
Organizing the Teacher's Desk
United States
(www.ourclassweb.com)
10 Tips to Help Keep Your Desk Clean
United States
(www.ismckenzie.com)
Tips for Organizing Your Desk
United States
(www.kimskorner4teachertalk.com)
Tips to Organize Your Work, Desk and Life
United States
(www.essortment.com)
12 Tips for an Organized Desk
United States
(www.productivity501.com)
What to Do When Your Desk is a Disaster
United States
(www.organizetips.com)

 

Student Desks or Tables
 
  • Eliminate the need for distracting wall displays by putting smaller versions on each student's desk or by putting them on small charts that can be put away when needed. Preferably in a loose leaf notebook or folder labeled 'Charts'.
  • If you don't want your students to fiddle with stuff in their desks, turn the opening away from them or find someplace else to store their supplies.
  • Use self-adhesive hook-and-loop tape to attach a pencil storage bag to the side of each student's desk.
  • If you can sew you can make 'aprons' to store supplies. If you can't sew, enlist a parent.
A Good Set Up of Classroom Furniture
Samoa
(www.school-furniture.ws)
Happi-Pocket Chair Bag
Commercially available student chair organizer.
United States
(www.chairbag.com)
Miniature Tool Belt Organizer
United States
(www.theteacherscorner.net)

 

Classroom Library
 
  • Cereal boxes, cracker boxes or any other tall skinny box make good magazine or book files.
  • Baskets and plastic bins can be used to store books.
  • Make bookmarks out of cardboard. The student puts their bookmark where they removed their book from the shelf. It is then easy to see where they need to put it back.
  • Make rearranging books one of your activities for students who finish early.
  • Sort through your books and put them into categories. Store all the same kind of books in a container. It will be much easier for students to put the books back into a container than in a specific place on the shelf.
Book Genre Labels
Printables
United States
(abcteach.com)

Book Labels
Printables
United States
(www.ourschoolfamily.com)

Classroom Library
United States
(teachertipstraining.suite101.com)

Creating a Classroom Library
Ideas from acquiring books to how to check them out, printable book label and other printables.
United States
(www.mandygregory.com)

Examples and Tips for Organizing Classroom Libraries
United States
(teacher.scholastic.com)

How to Organize Books
United States
(www.wikihow.com)

How to Organize a Bookshelf
United States
(www.wikihow.com)

Organizing My Classroom Library
United States
(www.proteacher.net)

Organizing Your Classroom Library
United States
(www.ourclassweb.com)

Organizing Your Classroom Library
United States
(forums.atozteacherstuff.com)

Print-Rich Libraries
United States
(teacher.scholastic.com)

Tips for Organizing and Managing Your Classroom Library
United States
(www.kimskorner4teachertalk.com)

What an Effective Classroom Library Looks Like: Organization and Layout
United States
(content.scholastic.com)

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