File cabinets?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by DrivingPigeon, May 31, 2013.

  1. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    May 31, 2013

    File cabinets seem like a staple in classrooms, but does anyone not use them?

    My new classroom has 4 file cabinets, and I'm considering having them all removed. I currently have 1 tall file cabinet, and I only use one drawer. I use binders for my teaching resources, and file things that I need to get to more frequently (book orders, permission slips, etc.). My desk has 2 drawers that can hold files, so I'm thinking I could just use those.

    Am I crazy? Has anyone else done away with file cabinets in their classroom?
     
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  3. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    If you have all digital files, then I can see getting rid of them.

    It's my goal to convert twenty-five percent of my files to digital this summer. I've got a lot of files!
     
  4. AnonyMS

    AnonyMS SpEd Para! BASE room aide! RTI Facilitator!

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    I keep a file on every student I teach. In it, I include any notes from parents, infractions, student work samples, late slips, attendance slips, parent conference notes, etc..

    And, even though I keep a digital file, I like to have at least one original copy of anything I use during the year. If I run more copies than I need, I file them for next year just in case.
     
  5. elateacher4life

    elateacher4life Cohort

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    I have two file cabinets and they provide ample space. Four seems excessive, so you may want to keep two and get rid of the others.
     
  6. Myrisophilist

    Myrisophilist Habitué

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    I don't use them. Most of my resources are digital, and I keep printed resources in folders.
     
  7. thirdgradebuzz

    thirdgradebuzz Comrade

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    I have 3. One whole cabinet and one or two drawers of another one is purely used as storage for "stuff" since we don't have much storage space in our classrooms. As for drawers I actually use for filing, I have 2 drawers for reading, 2 drawers for science, 1 for writing, 1 for storing copies (I make them way ahead) and 1 for student files.
     
  8. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    I always have had 2- I use the top 2 drawers of each for things I use regularly. The bottom drawers are things like my kids' cumulative writing folders, extra name tags, some craft supplies, etc...
     
  9. Mr.history

    Mr.history Cohort

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    Funny you mention this. I will have my first classroom next school year. I looked in my classroom and I had 4 big filing cabinets. I have no idea what I will do with them. I'm not sure if they lock/have keys right now but if they do I will probably use one for my personal belongings and leave the others empty.
     
  10. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I have one tall one and it contains not one file! :)

    I do, though, use and love the filing drawer in my desk.
     
  11. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    I have a few although I use mostly one. I use mine constantly.
     
  12. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    I have 3.
    They are full of "I might need this."
    Unfortunately, that is different than, "I'm glad I kept this, I need it now."

    I should probably do a purge.
     
  13. cheeryteacher

    cheeryteacher Enthusiast

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    I got rid of mine five years ago. I do have a small 2 drawer, but I use that to lock up my purse. There is a built in 2 drawer file cabinet in one of our cabinets. All I need is one drawer.
     
  14. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    I recently moved into a new room. It came with a 5 drawer cabinet & a full long 2 drawer cabinet that was full of files from the previous school that several years ago. I brought in a four drawer & a 2 drawer. The room has no book shelves.

    The long 2 drawer is the perfect size for my microwave! :D I'm using the 5 drawer to organize file folder games and seasonal supplies.

    I really need to clean out the other 2. I've done it somewhat, but I do have 1 drawer that I used for monthly activities. Since I'm no longer teaching I can just keep a master copy plus a digital file. My fear is what if I lose the digital file? Or I can't print it on the day that I need it. That happens quite frequently at my school. At my previous school we couldn't do that. :dizzy:

    For those who have converted to digital files, what's the easiest way to do that?
     
  15. iteachbx

    iteachbx Enthusiast

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    I had 2. Got rid of 1. The other I put in a spot in the classroom that is pretty much dead space- between the door and the closet. I use the side of it to hold my passes and bathroom passes and the front holds the sign out my kids use when they go to different services (like PT, OT etc.). Inside of it is still kind of a mess. Most of the drawers hold my students' old portfolios. (They have them from K on so I have 8 for each kid- math and ELA that I have to hold onto and pass off to their next teacher.)
     
  16. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    As you go, IME. I plan a week ahead so if there is a worksheet that I have hard copies for but not digital files, I'll try to retype, scan or find an alternate version online to save.

    I keep a digital version and a hard copy of everything. We can't send documents to the copier electronically so I have to have a hard copy anyhow.

    I give the same tests to all classes from semester to semester. I do update them as I see fit, but tests make up a big chunk of the space in my filing cabinets.

    I also have a lot of class sets of worksheets, review sheets and such. Things I use over and over that the students don't write on.
     
  17. Rabbitt

    Rabbitt Connoisseur

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    Mine do not contain files either.
    One contains all my teacher's editions and stuff that comes with them.

    The other I use for storage...my purse, I-pad, my healthy snacks, my emergency stuff (feminine products, gloves, sweater, shoes, etc).

    A friend laid hers on its side on a table. The drawers contain her hardcover children books, dictionaries, etc.

    I have not gotten rid of my file cabinets because I use the sides for student references.
     
  18. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    What's IME?

    I need to see a picture of the filing cabinet on it's side. I've been wondering how to use the drawers as shelves.
     
  19. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    IME = In my experience
     
  20. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I have a lot of filing cabinets, more than what i need, but the all lock, so i think i will keep them.
    I have 4 with 4 drawers, and 1 with 2 drawers.
    So far this is how i've used them:
    - 2 filing cabinets with 4 drawers: used 6 out of the 8 drawers for student folders. I have 6 periods, and i have students put their folders in 1 drawer / class. I don't lock these. 2 drawers remained unused. I will do the same next year.
    - 1 filing cabinet nextto these is full of office supplies and arts and crafts supplies i inherited from the previous teacher. I have this one locked.
    - a small, 2 drawers cabinet that is full of IEPs of previous students ( not sure why they're still there) and some plans. I have these locked and haven't even looked through. I'm not sure if i will keep this one.
    - the third 4 drawer cabinet behind my desk, i put plans and left over work sheets i created, some documents i need to keep copying through out thenyear, some additional work the students can do, etc. i also keep student records in here just in case i need to justify a grade.
    I think i will keep all of them, maybe even the small one, because i have only been here for 2 months and i already have a lot of things i am storing, so 9 months will be a different story.
     
  21. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Wow, some of you have a lot of filing cabinets! We all have one 4-drawer cabinet. Right now, mine is about half full and I'm working on cutting that down as I'm trying to get rid of as much paper as I can.
     
  22. msufan

    msufan Comrade

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    Same here: I cut down from 2 to 1 last year as more and more files have gone digital. I'll keep that one for the foreseeable future, though, as I keep everything from an umbrella to kind notes from my students to actual files in there. It's the place where I can hide surprises, keep personal items, or store things I don't really need but am supposed to hang onto.
     
  23. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I've always had digital files. Even so, I've found that there are always things that only seem to exist in hard copy format: documentation, student work, final exams (which we must save for one year "just in case"), copies of referrals, IEPs, etc. I have one filing cabinet that I use for those things.
     
  24. platypusok

    platypusok Companion

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    I have two...one tall 4 drawer and one short two drawer. I'm slowly moving all my class stuff into three-ring binders. However, the tall one locks so I keep fundraising money in it so I will probably not get rid of it.

    The short one has academic team and stu-co stuff in it and I could clean it out and into binders but it's under the pencil sharpener and has the pencil cup (for writing utensils I find on the floor...I put them in the cup and they are up for grabs), tissue, baby wipes and a notebook (for kids who never have paper) is on top of it.

    I do think about painting them because they are pretty ugly.
     
  25. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    Thanks for sharing, everyone.

    I think I'll get rid of them. My desk drawers should fit all of the files that I need to store. I plan on making a "teacher toolbox" this summer to hold my office supplies, so my desk will be pretty empty. Also, I have 14 bookcases, and an entire wall of built-in storage, so I definitely don't need a file cabinet for extra storage. :D
     
  26. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    I have a filing cabinet that the last teacher left. I kept all of her stuff in it because she had some lessons in there and I thought I might use some of it during the year. I didn't touch it, so next year I'm getting rid of her stuff.

    I can use it to keep student work.
     
  27. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    I want to get rid of my teacher desk in the room I moved into this year and am thinking of making one of these.

    I would love to have all of that storage!
     
  28. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    It looks like such a nice way to organize things. I currently have all of my little stuff (tacks, rubber bands, paperclips) in small canisters in my desk, and I just don't like it.

    I've thought about getting rid of my teacher desk, but then I would have to find a table or something for my computer, monitor, speakers, and printer. So, it just seems practical to keep the desk. :)
     
  29. HistTchr

    HistTchr Habitué

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    I have a four drawer filing cabinet in my classroom, and store all of my unit materials in there. I have a folder (or two) for each unit, with copies of handouts and other resources. In my office, I have three filing cabinets. Two of them include students' departmental portfolios, and the third one has all professional paperwork.
     
  30. Teacher Chele

    Teacher Chele Habitué

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    I saw an adorable post on Pinterest about removing the handles and covering the fronts of file cabinets in patterned contact paper. It looked great and brought a lot of color and cohesion to the classroom. Search around and take a look at it.
     
  31. marc92647

    marc92647 Rookie

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    I use filing cabinets.

    In our district we have a print shop budget that we use to make copies of activities. It usually takes a week from the time we send in the copy order to the time we get it back. In order to make full use of my print shop money, I make copies of all the activities I actually did with the class. So I have all my activities with 36 copies each in a folder ready to go if needed for the following year. It is the only way I can use my print shop money effectively. Its really hard to plan an entire week ahead, so this method works best for me.
     
  32. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    I'm actually in the same situation. I did forget to mention that in my wall of built-in cabinets, there are 6 drawers that hold files. So, that is where I store all of my copies. :)
     

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