How do you organize your desk?

Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by ayotte04, Jul 16, 2007.

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  1. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Thanks so much for the response AND the picture! I have heard of Elmo's, and have known a few teachers who had one (and RAVED about it!), but never actually saw one. Now I want one too! Some of the people I know who have an Elmo got them by attending a workshop (I think science).
     
  2. shasha379

    shasha379 Devotee

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    If I'm not mistaken, I think this particular document camera is made my Lumens not ELMO.
     
  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Each teacher in our department is getting an Elmo next year. I'm super excited about it!

    (I think it's okay to call them Elmos even when they aren't made by Elmo. Just like you can call all tissues Kleenex, if you're so inclined.)
     
  4. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    And around here, all soda pops are Cokes!
     
  5. shasha379

    shasha379 Devotee

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    I didn't mean to correct you or anything. I just thought maybe they are made differently. I have this one, but I don't know what an Elmo looks like.:sorry:
     
  6. ayotte04

    ayotte04 Comrade

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    Wow. How brilliant. I'm not really into rubber stamps but what a cheap way to organize and not have it be big and bulky.
     
  7. ayotte04

    ayotte04 Comrade

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    I used one of those last spring for student teaching and really liked it. They aren't $500 cause I think my teacher bought it with her own money...the price will surely come down in the next few months or year I'm sure.

    Overall I liked it better than a transparency, but the problem I had with it was I had to turn out the lights in the classroom and sometimes it would still show up dimmed out on the board.....but it beats having colored vis-a-vis all over my hand like I walked out of a pre-K classroom
     
  8. ayotte04

    ayotte04 Comrade

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    Jul 17, 2007

    amen Whatley! Cokes. I grew up in the southeast and everything is coke....when you want one you say so...then the person asks "ok what KIND of coke do you want" ....pop and soda and all that stuff drives me crazy.

    All hail the Southern charm of Coke
     
  9. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Yep! All coke here. I'm an Aide, but here's my 2 cents.

    Desks: I have TWO desks. Yes, I'm very lucky. I have 2 classrooms (same teacher, same kids). I noticed that the smaller table like desk was used more and easier to keep up. There is only so much room on it, so you have to quickly take care of business. Both my big desk and the teacher's big desk became clutter traps. BOTH of us wish we had a small desk heighth table in both rooms.
    Teacher Books: Any teacher idea books that are hidden nicely in a closet or cabinet does NOT get used. Keep what you like the most easily visible. Yes, your stuff counts too, not just the kiddos.
    Needing Workspace: We preferred sitting at the kid's tables. Either we worked while they worked and stopped to help as needed (both of us at different tables) or we moved them so that one table was available for workspace.
    Trays & Organization: Trays have to be strategically located. Put in the wrong spot, they become clutter traps. In the right spot, they are useful for keeping our things together. We learned that I use the open hanging files sitting on top of the bookcase. She doesn't. She uses a file crate that she put on the computer chart (which is where she actually needed most of her documents). Tip: Think about how you use things and where it should be best placed and don't be afraid to change things as you learn more about how you best work.
    Notes to Self: I have these 1/2 size index cards that are on a ring. I wear that ring during the day. When I complete that task or don't need it anymore, I tear that index card off and throw it away. It is always on hand and I don't lose it. It's not clutter either.
    Slash Pocket Dividers (not the plastic kind): I love these. There are many uses. We liked them for student's unfinished folders. We could easily see if they had anything in it. We use it for fast finishers fun educational puzzle pages. We could see if we needed to replinish them. I used it to sort my work and leave it on the table so that I can move it around and it isn't messy and I can see it.

    The biggest thing I learned is you need a system that is fast and easy and doesn't require much thinking. (dump it spot that doesn't look like a dump it spot). You need things in the right spot and through out the room (not just your desk). You need to see things. Clear bins work better for me than colored bins, etc.
    Icecube Tray...I haven't heard of that one before! I want to see an example of that teacher cart!
     
  10. srh

    srh Devotee

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    Jul 17, 2007

    Sidebar: I grew up saying "coke" for everything soda-like too. Then I went to work for a federal agency, and "coke" took on a whole new meaning...I started saying "soda." It wasn't worth the smart remarks to maintain my habit. Oops. Poor choice of words! :-D
     
  11. holliday

    holliday Comrade

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    Jul 17, 2007

    One thing I do to keep the kiddos from walking right up to my desk (where I could have confidential email open or graded work out or whatever...) is I put a strip of colored electrical tape -that I got at the dollar store - on the floor a few feet from my desk. The kids know not to cross that line until invited. I explain that I just don't want anyone seeing private student stuff and they totally respect the rule. You have to replace the tape every so often, but it's cheap and only takes a little strip to make the point.
    I also have a rule that no more than 2 people can be at my desk at a time. I HATE lines of students at my desk (it just becomes an excuse to hang out and socialize).
     
  12. sevenplus

    sevenplus Connoisseur

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    Jul 17, 2007

    :) No, I didn't get left out in the furniture assignments! I used to have a desk. I just never really used it besides as a place to pile stuff up. Plus we have pretty smallish classrooms and I really wanted the room for the students.

    When I am working before or after school, I spread my things out on a student table. Two things that I really like that is that they are uncluttered and I HAVE to clean it up right away since the students need the table. So it prevents me from my awful piling habits.

    I do have 3 2-drawer filing cabinets that are scattered around the room. One reason they are scattered is because I like to use the magnetic sides for centers.

    My other little drawer thing is out of the way and the tall tower is up by my teaching area so everything is at my fingertips.

    Works very well for me!
     
  13. ayotte04

    ayotte04 Comrade

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    good good good. im getting the tape and doing that. as much fun as it is to be popular i dont like the lines...
     
  14. loves2teach

    loves2teach Enthusiast

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    Jul 18, 2007

    I have an elmo, and it looks kind of like this...

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jul 18, 2007

    In my school that's called a "visualizer" and all our classrooms have them.

    I'm normally a chalkboard person, but it was GREAT when I was doing graphing in precalculus. I could put a blank sheet of graph paper up and do the problems on it. What a huge improvement over my attempts on the board!!!!
     
  16. ~Nicole

    ~Nicole Comrade

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  17. WindyCityGal606

    WindyCityGal606 Enthusiast

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    Jul 18, 2007

    Wouldn't I LOVE to run out and buy one right now!! LOL!
    I've used these before and WOW!! Life was never so good!! AHHH>...the memories. Unfortunately, the room does need to be dark and that can lead to problems in the room. The class I taught in had no windows so when it was dark, we are talking about PITCH BLACK!!! You always have a few clowns in a dark room!!
     
  18. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    The only thing we really use ours for is to let the kids share their work. Otherwise transparencies are still used. Oh...and a few times a year we do use it to do some shared reading.
     
  19. TulipsGirl

    TulipsGirl Cohort

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    Jul 18, 2007

    Whenever I read about teachers doing this I think: WOW that is super organized! I'd love to do that!
    Then I wonder: being in a first grade class a lot of the planning I do is day to day. Even the lesson plans that I hand in to the principal are really subject to change. I hand in what I HOPE to do that week, and then find myself changing plans a lot during the week, based on how things went (reteaching, or we rescheduled things...) Do you think that this was just because I was a first year teacher? Is there hope that I'll be able plan well enough that I could make such organized M-F folders before the week starts? Any primary teachers feel the same way?
     
  20. TulipsGirl

    TulipsGirl Cohort

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    Does this mean you never have to make transparancies again??
     
  21. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    It depends on what you use transparencies for. We use them a lot to let students fill in their understanding of what the math problem is, for example. The teacher gives a short lesson and then lets each student come up and write an answer to one of the problems and write the answer in themselves (small class). You need transparencies for that.
     
  22. ~Nicole

    ~Nicole Comrade

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    No, I think that makes you a good teacher. I've been teaching for 7 years and I still change plans (even lessons that I teach every year).

    I like to think of it as "flexible structure"-structure being you have something planned-done up, in folders or whatnot and flexible enough to day-scratch that an do something else.
     
  23. TulipsGirl

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    Ah, yeah, thats true. I usually had them write the answer on the actual board, because their little hands couldn't write that small at first. Got complicated when the answer was too high up to reach :)
    The super thin markers could solve that problem, though.
     
  24. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Maybe you could put it in one of those accordian folders and label it M-F. Then write in a planner. Even when you make changes, you can refer to the planner and know which area it is in based on the original target date. Plus it is all in one spot.
     
  25. TulipsGirl

    TulipsGirl Cohort

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    Thanks for the encouragement, Nicole! :)
     
  26. WindyCityGal606

    WindyCityGal606 Enthusiast

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    I worked in a state that had a scripted curriculum...no creativity needed...just deliver it on the correct day and do not reteach!!! The kids had to go to tutoring for that. ANYWAY.....! When I was using that curriculum, I was able to do the M-F folder of handouts. Didn't matter who my students were, what their needs were, or anything else. Monday was planned out for us, as was Tuesda, Wednesday, Thusday, and Friday. Made me wonder why I needed a teaching certificate. My friends could have done it. I only stayed one year then ran away quickly!!
     
  27. paperheart

    paperheart Groupie

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    Jul 18, 2007

    How do you use yours?
     
  28. Madee

    Madee Rookie

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    No more transparencies

    I have a Samsung projector, but I still call it my ELMO. We are fortunate in that every teacher in our building has one. I do not use transparencies at all anymore. Any worksheet or paper that we are working on can be displayed and written on as usual. I also love it because flashcards, manipulatives, etc. can be placed right up there for the whole class to see. :)
     
  29. TulipsGirl

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    I think I'll try this cutNglue, thanx. The worst that can happen is that I'll change things around in the folders as I change my plans.
     
  30. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    I have one for each class period . . . five classes per day. Then I have pockets for team information, department information, parent contacts, administrative stuff, internet usernames/passwords, library work passes, "to do" things for the day, "to do" things for the week, and "to do" things for the month. Another is for my current unit plan. (My yearly plans are in a huge binder, and I always take out my current unit and keep it on hand.) Then there is one for my curriculum map & core content. I usually keep one for outgoing mail and one where I stick mail to read later . . . catalogs and the like. I think I have one for office referrals and detention notices, too . . . don't give those out much. We sent papers home with the kids on Thursdays during sixth period class, and I have a "send home" pocket, too.

    That doesn't seem like 27 things, but I can't remember any others.
     
  31. loves2teach

    loves2teach Enthusiast

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    Mine adjusts to the light- I can use it with 1/2 of the lights on in my room. I didn't know it was that expensive lol.

    I use transparencies on it (old ones) I also use blank ones over sheets to write the answers (have done that in my Teacher editions/student books too).
     
  32. ayotte04

    ayotte04 Comrade

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    That's the coolest thing...OMG I MUST get one. I'm all about maximizing wallspace and minimizing what I put on my desk. Brilliant!

    THanks for the link to lit
     
  33. Calalilys

    Calalilys Comrade

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    The only thing I have on my desk is the Apprentice Organizer I bought from Staples last year and my laptop. Of course papers pile up as the day goes on, but when I leave each day, it's spotloss again. I can't handle having a messy/cluttered desk.
     
  34. hbdb

    hbdb Rookie

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    Wish I had one! in Montessori the teachers often don;t have desks atleast at my school, but I think I deserve one and will set one up next year. Atleast a small one:)
     
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