A Teacher Tool Box and an Organized Desktop

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I just did a count and I only have 3 more Mondays until I begin training with my new district, and I only have 5 more Mondays until the first day of school!  This makes me happy that I’ve been pretty consistent with getting things ready for next year.
I’m linking up with Tara from [4th Grade Frolics] for her Monday Made It linky!
I have two creations to share with you today.  Both of them are to help me be more organized!  I feel that classroom organization is so key to my success as an educator, so I’m determined to do a better job at it.
My first creation is my new computer desktop.  I saw this idea last week on [Cheryle’s blog] when I was scouring through Monday Made It posts.  The original idea came from Charity, and you can check that out [here].  Charity has a great tutorial for some sizing issues, so I recommend visiting her site.
This background was made in PowerPoint, then I saved the whole thing as a PNG image and uploaded it as my desktop.  It is so easy to go in and change something and then upload the new picture to the desktop.  (I know because I’ve already done it several times!)  I love how my computer desktop will match the nautical theme that my classroom will have.
Here’s a before and after look at my desktop.  Before there was no rhyme or reason for what files/folders were on my desktop, where they were placed, or anything for that matter!
Now I have specific areas to place folders and files on the desktop to keep me organized.  I also added a sticky note (Mac feature) to each so that I can quickly type notes in.
I also went into the settings and hid the toolbar at the bottom so that it only pops up when I scroll the mouse to the bottom of the screen.

My second creation is my new teacher tool box!  I’m sure we have all seen them all over blogs and Pinterest, and I knew it would make a HUGE impact on organization so I had to make one.
UPDATE 7/29/15 — You can now grab a copy of similar labels on my [TpT Store] by clicking [here]!  These do not require scrapbook paper, so there is less time commitment!
I picked up the plastic organizer at Home Depot for $10!  It was on sale from $17.  How can you beat $10???  Then, I grabbed a few more sheets of scrapbook paper from Hobby Lobby.  The colors and patterns are perfect for matching my nautical themed classroom!
Before I did anything else, I removed the drawers and spray painted the whole box navy blue to match my classroom theme.
I didn’t have any labels at the time and my printer does not like to print in color… So I had to go the long route in making the covers for each drawer.  I made a stencil on PowerPoint for the drawer covers that were 2.12″ x 4.25″ (large drawers) and 1.38″ x 2″ (small drawers).  Then I used the stencil to cut the scrapbook papers out.  In PowerPoint I created simple black and white labels that I printed onto regular paper and cut out.  I used 0.63″ x 1.25″ (small labels) and 1.37″ x 3.5″ (large labels) as sizes for the labels.
Using Mod Podge (love that stuff!  I adhered the labels to the scrapbook paper and gave it all a good coat to help them be more durable.  After they dried, I used double stick tape to stick them into the drawers.  I was initially nervous to use double stick tape because I thought you could see it, but you can’t at all!  I’m also happy I used the Mod Podge first because I was able to peel some of the tape off that had a wrinkle without tearing the paper.
If you want to see more Monday Made It ideas, head over to [Tara’s blog]!


  1. Hi Bryce! Thanks for mentioning me in your blog post this week! It is always great to get an awesome idea, create it for yourself, and then share it with the world. However, the best part is that I inspired someone else! I actually like yours better than mine now! Hahaha – that's how it goes, right!?!?! My next step would be to make something similar for my student computers – a future blog post!

    Cheryle ๐Ÿ™‚
    As the Classroom Turns

  2. I love this! I'm looking to make one this summer and have a question. I noticed you have drawers for sharpies, pens, highlighters. How deep are your drawers? I've only found drawers that are 6.5" deep.

    1. Hi Andrea!
      I don't have my toolbox at home with me (it's at the new school which is closed until the week after July 4th). But the drawers fit highlighters easily fit sharpies & highlighters. Here's an Amazon link to the one I purchased: http://amzn.to/1LyxGNE . You can also find it at Lowe's! I hope this helps.


  3. Love the toolbox labels! Have you considered sharing the labels or making them available on Teachers Pay Teachers?! I would love a set for my toolbox!


  4. august 2016, just purchased one on walmart.com with a bonus 2 little organizers for only $11. incld tax.
    Thanks for the great organizing of the pens, notepads and post its…. As a home schooler I am looking for great space saving techniques!

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