I admit it-I’m the teacher with OCD. No, you can’t just throw assignments on my desk. There is a process, a system, a unique brand of organizational crazy.
This year I relocated schools for the 8th time (a norm in our school district until a teacher accrues around 10 years seniority), and decided that my trusty old homework tower deserved a facelift after surviving numerous moves and years of abuse. I bought these multi-coloured drawers at Michaels, but I have seen similar variations at Costco and other big box retailers. They can be pretty pricey, even when they are discounted at the beginning of the school year, so longevity and DIY fixes are key.
I sold, donated, and gifted the majority of my accumulated classroom decor because I moved into a shared/multiple room scenario this year. I decided to reconceptualize my decor theme (I warned you that I’m quirky) so that it would be neutral enough to work in any shared space. What can be more neutral than black, gold and white?
This is a critical step for optimal paint adherence. Make sure that you give ample time for your priming coat to dry. By the time I sprayed all the drawers, knobs, and frames the drawers I began with were ready to go.
At this point, I learned how important it is to cover your mouth and nose when spraying. I tied a handkerchief around my face to prevent the inhalation of fumes. Make sure you are in a well ventilated space (I had the garage door open).
Initially, I had thought to paint the frames gold as well, but I’m happy I chose to accent with gold. I don’t want my classroom to look like Liberace’s lair.
I found these chalkboard stickers and gold embossed letters at Walmart in the wedding decor section of all places. They add just enough contrast and now each class has a hand-in and hand-out drawer that is still easy to find without the old colour-coded system.
These towers have been a logistical lifesaver. Being split between two buildings and three rooms can seem like a daunting hurdle, but I have found a way to make it work. I have left one tower in a shared classroom in the main building (so thankful for my gracious classroom “landlord”) and the other in my classroom across the parking lot (we are a booming school that has run out of space).
Do you like DIY posts? Let me know if you want to see more organizational/repurposing tips and tricks.