Finally got into my classroom. MAJOR storage problem. Please help!

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Teachings4Me, Aug 1, 2010.

  1. Teachings4Me

    Teachings4Me Companion

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    Aug 1, 2010

    Well, the first big day of a new teacher's career happened yesterday. I finally got into my classroom. I'm in a brand new school that's starting out in portables. I knew I'd have a "blank canvas" (to put it nicely) but it's barren. All it came with was a white board and 1 bulletin board. My biggest concern: NO STORAGE! All I currently have is my teacher's desk that has 2 drawers, 1 big enough for files, and an old magazine rack with a couple of drawers that I was planning on using for books. (Both things that had to be snatched in a teacher/furniture free-for-all.)

    Oh, and I'm in 2nd grade, not 3rd grade as I had previously thought. (Not a major complaint, just a surprise.)


    I've already gotten on freecycle asking for a filing cabinet and I've been to Goodwill, but my major problem is that almost anything I find is too big. I can't get it to the school in my car and I don't know anyone that has a truck/SVU.

    If I had all the money in the world, I know I could make it work, but with dwindling funds I'm really concerned.

    PLEASE HELP!
     
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  3. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Aug 1, 2010

    Time to get creative!
    -"milk" crates are inexpensive and can hold a lot--stack them on their sides to create shelves
    -ask at a copy store if they will donate some of their paper boxes to you--they are very sturdy and can either be piled up or stacked on their sides to hold light things.
    - the old "college" staple of planks of wood stacked with bricks between them works really well; you can get shorter lengths of wood so that they fit into your car
     
  4. goingtogigi

    goingtogigi Rookie

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    Aug 1, 2010

    Target has milk crates for $2 and Wal-Mart is selling them right now for $3. I file my books in them, I turned my resource books on end and organized them in milk crates too. They are great to use when you have limited storage and they transition well when you get a real storage space. I 'served' 4 years in our school portables and this is my first year back in a real building with 2 huge closets. My crates fit perfectly in closets now too.
     
  5. terptoteacher

    terptoteacher Connoisseur

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    Does your district have a surplus "store".....in my district, all surplus furniture is stored and you just have to go pick it out. I got 3 book cases and a 2 drawer filing cabinet....not the prettiest things, but contact paper works wonders...
     
  6. wvteach

    wvteach Rookie

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    Tubs, tubs, and more tubs!! I am a huge fan of organizing/storing with tubs and bins. Also, Walmart has plastic shelving units that are on sale right now (can't remember the price but remember thinking it was a good deal). Haha. You would have to assemble...but that would certainly help with transporting them.
     
  7. WaterfallLady

    WaterfallLady Enthusiast

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    I had a portable, my custodian put all the excess bookshelves in my room so that made for nice storage.

    I agree with the milk crates. Those plastic Sterilite drawers are great. I wait until Joann Fabrics has them 50% off. Try posting on Craigslist and asking for donations.
     
  8. Pencil Monkey

    Pencil Monkey Devotee

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    Aug 1, 2010

    try to set up a project on donorschoose.org

    Also, I have shelving that I found on clearance at biglots so check there.
     
  9. halpey1

    halpey1 Groupie

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    I love the CLEAR tubs at Target or Wal-Mart. They come in lots of sizes and I tape a paper to the outside and write down whatever I put in them and put them with the paper facing out so I can easily see what's in them.
     
  10. janney

    janney Cohort

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    I'm in a brand new school that's starting out in portables.

    Is the school still being built? Are you permanetly in a portable or will you be moving into the building when it's finished? If this isn't going to be your permanent home, I would wait to buy anything that you wouldn't want to move with you.
     
  11. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    Aug 1, 2010

    I know you want your first classroom to be perfect and be set up exactly as you have dreamed. The reality is that you were given a blank slate and not enough resources and your paychecks are probably several weeks away. Do not go into debt for this. Do as much as you can and allow your classroom to evolve over time. Hang lots of student work - maybe even ask them for ideas. Make do with lots of cardboard boxes (spraypaint them if you have time). It's not a perfect solution but by the time your first year is over, you'll see how your classroom flows and then if you have to spend your own money, you can do it wisely. Decide how much you can afford (ex. $20/check) and only spend that much or less and then put your name on everything that you have purchased and save your receipts.
    Focus your energy on making the place tolerable but above all, be ready to teach. I love your attitude!
     
  12. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Here is an idea for shelves to put under your boards... cinder blocks and 2x8 or 2x10 boards cut the length you need. Stack 2 blocks on each side and lay a board. Stack 2 more blocks on each side and lay another board. To steady the top board, maybe lay another block on each end. You could get 2 flatter blocks to lay on top.

    Found this on google.
    [​IMG]
     
  13. UVAgrl928

    UVAgrl928 Habitué

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    Wow... that shelving looks great! I have to say that it sounded kind of ghetto, but with the lamp and the plant, it looks very "industrial" and modern :)

    I am going to try to make milk crate seats next week... over on PT many teachers have made these, and they seem like a great storage/seating solution! I love sterilite plastic shelving and drawers from walmart/target, as well as some of the closet storage solutions. I have some really great shelves that are about a foot wide, and have three shelves. They are stackable and you can attach them next to each other too! I like that there is flexibility in setting them up. I couldn't find the exact ones, but they look kind of like this, but aren't nearly as expensive (cost me $12 a set):
    http://www.target.com/gp/detail.html/181-1338729-0981915?asin=B001TREQXA&AFID=Froogle_df&LNM=|B001TREQXA&CPNG=furniture&ref=tgt_adv_XSG10001
     
  14. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    If you paint the blocks and wood to match and blend with the wall, then it wouldn't be so "ghetto". :D
     
  15. loves2teach

    loves2teach Enthusiast

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    My district has this too. I had no idea until I had worked for my system for a few years. You just go and pick it out and they bring it to my school :cool:
     
  16. jsgirl

    jsgirl Rookie

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    What are milk crate seats? I am interested;)
     
  17. 5throx

    5throx Rookie

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    Aug 3, 2010

    Talk to your head custodian...I was in a similar situation, after I talked the head custodian, he dug up about 4 wheeled cabinents from around the school, brought them in, and had his crew arrange them how I wanted them. MAKE FRIENDS WITH THE CUSTODIANS!
     
  18. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Milk crate seats...
    [​IMG]
     
  19. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    If you had to guess, what do you think the weight limit would be for these?
     
  20. eddygirl

    eddygirl Companion

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    Ask your colleagues if they have anything you could borrow for a while (or keep!). I got a great rolling cart from one teacher and a desk chair from another. Both were cleaning out their rooms of some of the excess and would have thrown these items away! You may be surprised how many pieces you can get right there at your school.
     
  21. UVAgrl928

    UVAgrl928 Habitué

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    Depends on whether they are staying on one position or moving. I am going to store them in a different place than the kids will be using them, so I will probably just store light things in them. If they are staying put, I don't see why you couldn't put whatever you want in them.
     

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