Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Organize Your Week!

I don't know about you, but I'm always looking for ways to organize my classroom.  I'd like to say I'm an organization queen, but that's really not true.  I do try, but my week usually buries me, and by Friday - you don't want to see the tornado I call my classroom!

I'm pretty bin-happy in my classroom.  I have a bin for everything.  Sounds good, I know.  Who doesn't like a cute bin?!?  Label it, and you're giddy, right?!


Who also has a classroom the size of a postage stamp?  I had so many people comment on my classroom pictures, saying how BIG it looked.  Friends, that was an optical illusion.  Trick of the camera.  Camera adds ten pounds feet?!  Because I gotta tell you...my classroom really IS itty bitty.  Teeny tiny. 

Not only that, but it lacks sorely in storage space.  Zip, zero, nada! 

I love our custodian.  He's a great guy, funny - on top of things.  SO on top of things, he's constantly reminding me to leave my emergency exit "bin free" <gasp>.  He did agree {with some prodding from me} to allow this:

No worries friends, I do keep the safety and well being of my students in mind.  My emergency window is able to slide over the green and blue bins!  {I was tested on this, by the way...}
But I have to tell you, I know in his heart of hearts he'd like for those bins to be G-O-N-E!  Anything I thought of involved another bin.  So the search was on.  Hopping around blogland I saw this cool product on somebody's blog...I can't remember who, but I did remember the name of the product:

Before, I had two bins.  The blue one held what I was doing that day, and the green one held what I was doing for the week.  At the end of each day I'd pull out what I needed for the following day and put it in the blue bin.  Nice system.  It worked for me, but honestly, I was looking to streamline things.  So, when I happened upon Filetastic I just knew that could possibly be my answer.
I was lucky enough to receive a Filetastic from Mardel ~ Christian & Education, Inc.  They have so many fun colors and patterns.  I'm pretty sure you'd be able to find one that matches your classroom theme!  Some hold 12 file folders {which are also ADORABLE - and very sturdy!} and the mini Filetastic holds 6.  I have the one that holds 12.  At first I thought that may be too many, and wasn't sure if I could find a space to accomodate such a long contraption...where there's a will there's a way.  If you're space is limited like mine, you may opt for the 6 pocket Filetastic.  I must say, though, it's nice having extra space.  I organized mine like this...
Included are lots of "tabs" so you can switch things out as your needs change...
The lables I chose:
*Next Week
*To Copy
Do you see those adorable stripes, flowers & polka dot file folders?
And I still have room to grow!!! {4 more pockets!!!}
So I went from those green & blue bins to...
Do you see how CLEAR my emergency window is?!?  Somebody just won themselves some brownie points!!!
Honestly, I don't have a bad thing to say about this product.  I'm not kidding you.  The files themselves are not only cute but they are really sturdy...not flimsy at all.  The actual Filetastic holder works just like those pocket charts us first grade teachers are used to.  There are three holes at the top and I used suction cups to adhere mine to my window {I know ingenius right?  I wanted them right next to my computer/"desk" area which is where I do my planning}, but you could use Command Strips or whatever else a resourceful teacher might come up with. 
Here are a few pictures of other Filetastics that are available for purchase at Mardel, Inc.



There are others too!   You can check them out {here}.

You've gotta know that Mardel, Inc. has sent me this item to ask me to write a review and tell about my experiences with it if I choose.  This review is my honest opinion.  I was not directed to write anything other than my opinion about the product based on my use of and experience with it.



  1. I am the proud owner to 3 filetastic folder systems. I love love love them. They hold my student work behind the door that way they are out of view during class time. I want the zebra ones for other organizational needs!!! Glad you love these!

  2. I think you're on to something!!! I have baskets and what-not everywhere - might be time for something different.

    I think our custodian is afraid to say anything!! I'm pretty sure I have something sort of blocking my fire extinguisher . . . but we have no such thing as an emergency window. Do you have to be a certain age and in certain physical health to sit by it??? :)

  3. Cute and functional, can't beat that! And plus you made the custodian happy, that's a bonus!

    Journey of a Substitute Teacher
    Endless Pinabilities!

  4. Functional, smart, and thrifty. I have a similar product but I like the styles of these Mardel ones better! Did your custodian give you kuddos?? :)

    ❤ -Stephanie
    Falling Into First

  5. Here is my thought on things blocking the emergency exit.. Do they think I'm not smart enough to swipe that stuff onto the floor and get us the heck out of there?

    Really? Oh, excuse me Mr. Fire..wait just a second while I stack my bins somewhere else and then we'll get out... Sheesh.. I have gone a few rounds about this. It pains me to see space unused!

    That product is so cute! I must look into it!
    Strive to Sparkle

  6. Wow! Your Filetastic looks great!! I have one in a cart at Mardel.com... Must hit "purchase" :)

  7. Those look great. I like your system of today's work and next week. I gotta get reorganized....already! I have a couple piles that just keep growing!

  8. Hmmm, I don't have an emergency exit or a fire extinguisher in my room...my 2 windows do not even open.

    I just got some new pretty bin/baskets today. If I had wall space, a Filetastic would be great. But I think a fire should be my main concern because our exit leads to a fenced in area!!!!

    Heather's Heart

  9. Hi Holly!! I loved reading this...I love seeing how other (more organized than me!) teachers manage their room. I think the filetastic is so cool! Thanks for all of the info :)

  10. I am in love! What a great organizer! Last year I used dish pan tubs, this year I have been using 3 drawer carts - but I am so cramped! This is exactly what I need! Thank you for sharing this great idea! :)
    Crayons and Curls

  11. I just found your blog..and absolutely love it! CUTEST blog ever!!

    I use those hanging file folders for my kids "mailboxes" to keep their folders in! If I have homework or notes or whatever, I simply slide it into their "mailbox." Best thing ever!! They really are so helpful no matter what you use them for! :)

    BTW - You might already have one, but I am hosting a giveaway on my blog. You could win a free, personal laminator! Come check it out if you get the chance! :)

    Sensational Seconds

  12. so...I USED to use one of those hanging file folders...well, technically I still have one...or two....but now I use the rolly cart with the colorful drawers :) but I love those hanging file folders.


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