How do you use binders in your classroom?

Discussion in 'Third Grade' started by time out, Jul 13, 2011.

  1. time out

    time out Comrade

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    Jul 13, 2011

    I'm thinking of changing from a single home folder to a binder for my move to third grade. I'm trying to figure out how to organize it though. I want it to be an organizational tool that is fluid. I don't want it to be a catch-all for all assignments.

    Here are some sections I'd like to include (in no particular order):
    • homwork
    • flyers
    • important school documents (don't know what to call this section)
    • behavior

    I don't know if I should have a section for all subjects. I do want a place for notes, study guides and tests though.

    For those of you who use binders, I'd love to hear your ideas. I have browsed some sites on the B.E.A.R binders but would like more ideas. Thanks.
     
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  3. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Jul 13, 2011

    One tip: use folders as your dividers. This way students can store some information in their folders (it gives you three dividers for the price of one).
     
  4. Andrea L

    Andrea L Habitué

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    Jul 13, 2011

    I've used binders with my kids for the past 9 years. I've found it most beneficial to use it as a communication/reference tool between home and school. I have five sections in my binder (using dividers): homework, reading/writing, spelling, math, social studies/science. I also make use of the pocket in the very front of the binders and put a label on it titled take home/bring back. Students use the take home/bring back section to take home fliers, notes, etc and bring back signed documents and notes from parents. The homework section is where they keep their reading logs and homework packets. The remaining sections are where students keep notes/documents on current curriculum to help them at home as well as all graded papers. Parents are required to look through the binders with their child and go over graded papers. Parents sign a paper (grade sheet) at the front of the section to tell me they've looked at the graded assignment/test. At the end of the trimester, I remove all of the graded papers and grade sheet with parents signatures. I send home the graded papers with the student's report card and KEEP the signed grade sheet just in case parents say they didn't know how their child were performing in our classroom. Students are required to leave all graded papers in their binders until I remove them. I make mistakes and have entered a score incorrectly into the grade book. Having the scores in the students binder is a great way to double-check myself and involve parents. Plus, the students get to own their grades! I also send home a progress report around the middle of the trimester for parents to check as well. I've tried the B.E.A.R or S.T.A.R binders and found them to be too much work for me. :) Good Luck! Remember to do what you think you can manage.
     
  5. time out

    time out Comrade

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    Jul 13, 2011

    @mopar: I like the idea of pockets. I'm going to ask parents to buy the dividers with pockets. I'm going to use the pockets for temporary storage and the rings for semi-permanent.

    @andreal: Thanks for the suggestions. I like the idea of keeping graded papers. It's a great way to keep parents in the loop. I think I'm also going to add a missed homework log. This would be great documentation for any students receiving a behavior check on the report card.
     
  6. Mrs. Mom

    Mrs. Mom Cohort

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    Jul 17, 2011

    I, too, have been toying with the idea of having the kids keep binders. I have tried to keep things streamlined with just 1-2 folders, but maybe a binder is the way to go. I would like a place for: homework (unfinished/completed), notes to/from school, spelling lists, study guides, extra paper, and graded papers. I LOVE the idea about a missing homework log, too, as well as behavior management notes. Guess I'd better start researching this....
     
  7. time out

    time out Comrade

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    Jul 20, 2011

    I'm going to buy a binder and dividers and play around with some ideas. I need to have one physically in front of me because I can't seem to work out all of the specifics in my head. What's great is that my sample can be shown to my parents at our orientation before the first day of school.
     
  8. EagleTeacher

    EagleTeacher Rookie

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    Jul 21, 2011

  9. amakaye

    amakaye Enthusiast

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    Jul 21, 2011

    I use the bear/eagle binder (have to decide what to call it this year--usually I make it match my theme or the school year theme). I have 3 folders: Homework (To Do/Finished); Take Home (Information/Returned Work), and Keepers (For study guides, chapter packets, etc.). The inside front pocket is for notes that need immediate attention. The students have a small zippered pouch in the front that keeps their spelling list, flashcards, etc.
     
  10. CFClassroom

    CFClassroom Connoisseur

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    Jul 25, 2011

    I always used folder and switched to binders last year.

    After 6 weeks I switched back.

    I found them to be bulky and were hard to store in the classroom.
     
  11. terptoteacher

    terptoteacher Connoisseur

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    Jul 25, 2011

    Love the idea, but our school has planners. Each planner has a pocket in the front. That's where they put their homework. The parents have to sign the planners daily so that's where I put any communication.
    Our school also has "Wednesday envelopes". We send these home weekly and that's where any pta fliers or communtiy fliers and corrected work is sent.
    So I think if I did binders it would be redundant....unless I could combine them somehow....
     
  12. TeachinHicks

    TeachinHicks Comrade

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    Jul 25, 2011

    We started using binders last year in our grade level to make it easier since we now block. We used the front pocket for notes home/take home papers, then the students had their planners that the school provides, and we had a section for each subject. They kept everything in these binders...the problem that we had is the binders from being used so often fell apart quite easily. For this year we suggested buying the heavy duty zip up binders, they seemed to last way better than the other binders students had last year. Make sure you have a really good hole puncher for all your papers too! :D
     

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