Get Organized for the New Year: How to be Efficient and Stay on Top of Classroom Materials

I love organization. I love boxes, binders, file folders, plastic baggies, planners.. if it helps me stay organized and less stressed – I’m totally in. Our days are VERY fast paced and there is not a lot of down time or prep time, so I have learned several different ways to keep myself from being buried in clutter..


Monthly Bins

In our classroom, I buy and create a ton of our materials including books, tasks, art projects, and materials for workboxes. In order to keep all of these things secure and ready for the following year, I have monthly bins. These also work GREAT in keeping clutter to a minimum because if I find Christmas materials in June, I can just throw them in the December bin instead of allowing them to get lost in a pile of junk.





Monthly Classroom Organization Systems

Each area in our classroom has some type of organizational system. In order to keep the day running smoothly with 4+ adults in one classroom, most materials are labeled in bins and activity bins stay in the same place, just the activity labels change. All of my data sheets for our month themed activities go along with the labels, so it makes it easy for my assistants to jot down notes in the correct place so that the student doesn’t do the same activities over and over again, and we can ensure they are mastering skills. We prep everything a month ahead of time so when the end of the month comes, we just organize the old materials in the monthly bin and put out the new materials for the month.

Traditional Workboxes


This is a video from last school year, but I like the way it was organized for these students that were able to retrieve their own tasks. 

Here is a picture of this year’s workbox station:
Table Time Activities 
(From my Clothespin Task Packs – switched out monthly)


Most of the clothespins have specific pieces that go with the monthly packs; however, I store all letter and number clothespins in an old jewelry holder so new monthly set-ups are quick and easy!


Storytime Prep:



Library Area:
Monthly Math & Literacy Materials:
Bulletin Board from Autism Adventures:
Cookie Tray Tasks from Creating and Teaching:
Art Activities

All activity pieces are cut and prepped in bulk ahead of time and placed in a labeled manila envelope or plastic sheet protector with a sample, so there is no worry to prep in the morning of the day you want to do the activity. We use my Easy Art packs for the prep and student directions.




To keep our play area neat and tidy, as well as to increase communication in our students, all of our toys are organized in bins inside a closet in the play area. Students have to request a toy before they begin playing with it (verbal request, sign language, or using pictures). If they wish to change an activity, clean up is required before they can have another activity.



Each student in my class is assigned a color at the beginning of the year. Anything and everything related to this student is color coded. Helps us locate needed data binders, behavior charts, schedule cards, and clipboards in a jiffy!




If you want to read more about how I color code student items, click below:


Calendars, Paperwork, and Important Information


To help tame the paperwork MONSTER.. I use my Special Educator’s Everything Binder. It makes my life so much easier.

Here is a video of my binder from 2014-2015 school year and here are some clips of the one I made for this year with the new updated covers and pages!



Click here to read about how I organize my Student Data Binders


How do you stay organized in your classroom??


easy classroom organization


  1. Kelly T. on December 31, 2015 at 12:52 am

    Hi Gabrielle! I love those "first-then" visuals you have – are they anywhere in your store?

  2. Angie Spanhak on December 31, 2015 at 1:00 pm

    Your Everything Special Education binder is the best!!! Love it!!

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