Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A Teacher Binder Makeover!

I have always felt that a key tool to being an organized teacher was to have a Teacher Binder! You know, that one binder that has all of the important information you need to have right at your fingertips on a day-to-day basis. I consider my teacher binder like my 3rd arm. And I pride myself on carrying it with me back and forth to meetings, and back and forth to school. It’s perfect for my over prepared, over structured self who needs to constantly plan for and review what I need to do and will be doing in the coming days and weeks of my classroom.

Yet, when I entered the Blogging community, my Teacher Binder Pride starting crumbling! Not only am I not alone in my Teacher Binder creation/obsession, but I realized my teacher binder was the outdated, over simplified version compared to all of my blogging friends!

(Purposefully not inserted photo of my old binder here!)

Yikes! Time for a makeover!

I like to save time creating resources myself when necessary, and luckily for me, I realized there were already dozens of Teacher Binder Resources on TeachersPayTeachers made by other Teacher Binder Lovers!

So here is a glimpse into my new and improved Teacher Binder for the 2012-2013 school year! A combination of my own, and other teacher’s creations for the MOST efficient Binder for me!

The Binder:

1.     First I picked up a traditional 1 1/2 inch binder like this one at Walmart (in pink!)
2.     I purchased a pretty pack of 8 binder tabs like these (again from Walmart!) The tabs came with an easy to follow instruction guide for how to use an online template to type and print your own labels. No chicken scratch in my binder this year!
3.     I used this pink border that perfectly matched my new binder to create my binder cover. I simply inserted the border in a word document and added my name in the center with some cute fonts, courtesy of KevinandAmanda.com!

The Tabs:

1.     Calendar
I stumbled across a LOT of printable calendars online in my searches, until I finally found the perfect one! Check out this FREE monthly calendar from Terri Thornton! I love that it is a generic template that you can customize, and that there is room to write in each day, as well as along the side for To Do's and Notes. And let's not forget to mention the cute rainbow theme. LOVE! 
2.     To Do's
I found this To Do List Template from Farley at  Oh Boy Fourth Grade. (This blog is a must see!) The
template is for a week's time and includes room for a To Do List, Meetings List, Notes, and Next Week's Notes. Aaa-mazing!
3.     Lesson Plans
This is where my week's lesson plans live. Of course the template I have included in my last post has already been modified. Ahh, the joys of summer planning and adjusting!
4.     Centers
This section includes my Center Schedule as well as my center rotation schedule (TBD!)
5.     Curriculum
Not only will this section house all things standards and objectives for my classroom, but also the FREE Curriculum Map found in this bundle by Colleen Zehr that so wonderfully outlines my year planning at a glance!
6.     Cheat Sheets
Here is where those handy dandy IEP Cheat Sheets I created will be. I love that these are a one page reference tool, and that it eliminates me having to bring home stacks of student paperwork each night!  
7.     Parents
I had been searching for a template to use to record my contact and communication time with parents. If you check out my Classroom Miscellaneous Pinterest Board, you'll see a few examples. But I just couldn't seem to find one that was just right for me, so I created my own template! The border in my file is courtesy of Digital Swirls Creations! Click here to download!
8.     Meetings
Last, but not least, space to record and track my Meeting Notes. Check out this FREE Template I'm using from Chloe Campbell!

A special Thanks and Kudos to the teachers on TPT who offered their FREE Downloadable Teacher Binder Resources to help me start off next year in an organized and much more stylish fashion!  

Good Luck creating your own Teacher Binders!


  1. Wow! This is great! I am starting off soon as a first year SPED teacher and this will be very helpful!! Thank you!!

  2. And I pride myself on carrying it with me back and forth to meetings,

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