Tuesday, July 16, 2013

How I Organize My Reading Materials

I finally finished unpacking in my new room! Can I get a WOOHOO?!?!?!
The room is far from ready, but I am super excited that there are no more totes or boxes begging for my attention. I spent some time up there finishing them off and organizing my reading materials. I had finally found a system that worked for me wonderfully last year, and I wanted to have it all ready to go for this year.
As you're reading this, I'm probably having a scan of some kind on my gall bladder. I think the threat of surgery has motivated me to get busy... I will say--as I write this--I feel better than I have since the "attack" and am hoping they will still be able to see a problem. The battle between being hungry and the fear of eating is no fun!
Sorry if that was too much information...
Anyway, take a look at what I accomplished today!
First up, my leveled readers. These come from the company divided in levels - below, on, and above. I kept them (at my old school) that way for the first year, but I didn't like having to grab books from three different spots each week. The colors are all the same (within a level) and you can't quickly tell where one week ends and the next begins. Instead I merge the three boxes! That way I can walk over and grab all the books I need each week for my groups. LOVE THIS!

Second, I know many people love organizing their materials in binders, but I LOVE my hanging file folders. They can hold more bulky items...as you will see in the next few pictures I have a lot of premade cards, etc. to store. You can see that I label each folder with the unit number and week number. The big bold writing on manila folders is not mine. The former teacher left those for me. Doesn't she have nice handwriting?

I take the hanging folders for the unit I am currently working on and move them to this crate on my counter. That way I don't have to go digging through my filing cabinet when I need something--or when I find a paper that should be put back in a previous week. I also started this last year and found it worked great for me!
Close up of what you see when you walk up to my crate. I keep the current math unit here too (maybe another post)...

Here's a peek inside my Unit 1 Week 1 reading folder. I have my word wall words, vocabulary word cards, retelling cards, sound spelling cards, I Have...Who Has (for entire Unit 1 - I always start playing the first week so the kids get plenty of practice by Week 5), and the little envelopes have some word cards to make sentences because that is our grammar skill for the week.

I also have my Amazing and Spelling Words posters for my focus wall. If you use 2nd Grade Reading Street, you might want to check these (and much more) out in our store.

This is what the previous teacher left me...fluency passages.

Sometimes I will put a folder within a hanging folder.
Here is Unit 1, Week 5.

Inside I have a "Digraphs" folder because it is our phonics skill for the week and I have a lot of resources to practice (see below).

Kagan Cooperative Learning materials that I have made. I believe these came out of a K-2 Language Arts book. Anyway, on the left is Showdown. On the right in the envelope are the digraphs students can put on the pink sheet to make words.

Our grammar skill for that week is exclamations and questions. This is another Showdown activity I use so it is just loose in the hanging folder.

That is how I organize my reading materials...works for me! I hope it will give you some ideas too. I've linked up with:
Head on over and share your organizational ideas too!
Have a blessed day!

P.S. Stay tuned for something big this week! I'll give you a hint. It starts with "F!" ;-)


  1. Keep us posted on how you're feeling. In the meantime, it must feel good to be so organized!

    ❀ Tammy
    Forever in First

    1. Yes, I definitely let out a huge sigh of relief when I finished!


  2. I was working in my classroom on Tuesday also. I finally got all of my boxes unpacked except my classroom library books. I have 9 of those boxes. I don't have places for everything yet but I am getting closer.

    I like hanging folders too to organize my reading plans for each week. It's amazing how similar a lot of us teachers are with each other. Maybe it's a Kansas thing. :)

    Mrs. Flickinger's Butterfly Oasis

    1. I just love having fellow Kansas bloggers stop by for a visit! Glad you are getting closer in your room as well. :-)


  3. I have organized my things by week before and it really makes things easier to find. Hope your scan was OK and that you are OK, too. Thanks for linking up with us!

    Fun in Room 4B


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