Packing up the classroom is never easy. Whether you’ve got to pack because it’s required at the end of each year to facilitate cleaning, you switching classrooms, or maybe you’re moving to another school site, packing up is a big chore with very little time to do it.
Thanks to the Googles, there are plenty of places to go for advice on how to pack up a classroom. There’s Jodi Durgin’s Clutter-Free Classroom, there’s Mashup Math’s 7 Handy Ideas for Packing Up Your Classroom, and probably a million other choices. All the advice they give is good stuff. They tell you to take a photo of your class before you do it so you remember how to set things up. They advise keeping things organized and starting it early enough so that you have enough time. They’re chalk full of good advice, most of which I’m going to ignore and just throw things in a box.
It’s the starting out fresh that I like. With each pack-up, with each move, you get to recreate your classroom in a better way. I take what worked and build on it, and take out the stuff that didn’t. It’s like lesson planning. But with your classroom being a more structured atmosphere, it’s difficult to mix things up as much as you can period to period or day to day like a lesson given to a class. So, with each move I get to grow, I get to expand my knowledge, and I get to try new things. With each classroom move, I see a chance to set things up even better than last time. I see a chance to clean up behind the shelves and desks, to clean up the endless amount of materials I horde throughout the year like a pack-rat. I get to shed the old ways and try something fresh and clean.