Math = Love: Organizing My Colored Paper Obsession

Monday, May 26, 2014

Organizing My Colored Paper Obsession

I have a slight obsession with colored paper and card stock.  My school only provides teachers with white copy paper, and let's be honest.  Foldables are so much prettier and more memorable when they are printed on colored paper.  And, activities are so much more durable when printed on card stock and laminated.  Most of my paper and card stock comes from Amazon .  When a ream of paper splits open before it is sold, they often mark it down to $3-4.  It usually arrives in a gallon sized ziplock bag due to the torn packaging, but the paper is just fine.  And, you can't beat the price.  When I need paper and can't find any marked down due to torn packaging, I usually turn to office supply sites like Zerbee where I can pick up Fireworx brand colored paper for $5-6 per ream.

Colored paper makes me smile, so it's a price I'm happy to pay.

Storage Cabinet in Classroom 

For the past two years, my colored paper obsession has lived on the second shelf of my black storage cabinet.  I stand the reams of paper up in cardboard and plastic magazine holders.  This has worked fine, but I've sort of outgrown my space.  I kept having to split up reams of paper into multiple holders to make it fit.

My students are allowed to get paper out of my cabinet to use for various school projects and origami.  They weren't always the best at putting up the paper that they pulled out that was the wrong color.  And, pieces of paper would often end up crumpled and unusable.  Plus, they had trouble differentiating between copy paper and card stock.  "Why is this paper so thick?"  Well, it's called card stock.  "Oh."

The other day, I saw a picture on Pinterest that suggested storing colored paper in your filing cabinet with hanging file folders.  I decided to give this a try while reorganizing my classroom the other day.

I put all of my card stock in one drawer of my filing cabinet.  Note to self.  Do not buy more yellow card stock this summer!  You have plenty!    

Organizing Card Stock in Filing Cabinet Drawer with Hanging File Folders

And, I put my colored copy paper in a separate drawer.

Organizing Colored Copy Paper in Filing Cabinet Drawer with Hanging File Folders

I like that the paper is organized by color now.  And, if you pull out a piece that is the wrong color, it should be easy to see where it goes back.  The files can easily be re-ordered and rearranged.

A big bonus is that it now clears up shelf space in my storage cabinet that is definitely needed!  The bad thing is that I used the filing cabinet drawers that I allowed students to use this past year to store their interactive notebooks.  Hmm...  Must think up new solution for that.  I guess I have all summer to come up with a new inb storage solution, though.

After moving my paper over to my filing cabinet, I found myself with all kinds of empty magazine holders.  But, they quickly were repurposed to hold extra spiral notebooks, composition notebooks, and pocket folders for next year.


I have so much organizing left to do with my classroom.  Once I get everything put away just like I want it for the summer, I'm going to do a post about everything in my storage cabinet.  Prepare yourself.  I've collected a lot of stuff in two short years of teaching!

Disclosure: This post contains Amazon Affiliate Links.  

12 comments:

  1. Can you post about where and how you store students' INBs? I'm diving in to the INB world next year and need all the advice I can get.

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    1. Added this to my list of posts to write this summer!

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  2. Your school provides white copy paper? Lucky.

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    1. I forget just how lucky I am sometimes. I did my student teaching in Tulsa in two different schools - one of the worst high schools in the city and one of the best middle schools. At the high school, teachers had to provide their own white copy paper. At the middle school, teachers didn't make their own copies. They had a full-time copy room employee who made copies for all of the teachers. You turned in your master copy with a sheet of paper explaining how you wanted your copies made, collated, etc. What was most crazy was that these two schools were in the exact same school district.

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  3. I'm totally blaming you for why I've gotten distracted reorganizing all of my paper (printed, cardstock, and construction) when I still have 2 weeks left of class =P. I think I am reclaiming my drawers for centers/activities and putting the paper in a cabinet like you have.

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    1. Ha ha ha. :) You're reclaiming drawer space, and I'm trying to reclaim cabinet space. Wouldn't it be nice if we had classrooms with unlimited storage space? :)

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    2. Yes, I always say I need a science classroom. Your post did spur me into action and I created a real "office" almost in my classroom (one of my students walked into the space and said "Hey, I like your office!" haha). I just have so much to store. All my computer paper and construction paper is now in hanging files. I'm liking it ok so far.

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    3. I need a science classroom, too! I was complaining about lack of storage space the other day, and the science teacher offered me some extra lab cabinets. I would take her up on the offer, but they're too big to fit through the door of my classroom! :(

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  4. How do you find these deals on paper on amazon? What do you search for?

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    1. I go to the Warehouse Deals section of Amazon and search for "paper" or "ream." Then, I sort from Low to High price. You have to check regularly because they are constantly adding things. http://www.amazon.com/b?node=1267877011 You have to catch it at the right time to get it at a good price. Sometimes you luck out; sometimes you don't. But, I tend to check it every few days.

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  5. great idea for storing colored paper and thanks for the tip for getting paper at a reasonable price!

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    1. Thanks! I'm hoping it works better this year than storing it in my cabinet. We'll see! :)

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