As if teachers don't already have enough on their plates, they are not only responsible for creating and maintaining classroom organization systems but are also expected to keep their classrooms not clean.
Sure most schools have a custodial staff that takes care of the basics such as emptying the trash cans (maybe even taking care of the recycling), vacuuming the carpet and sweeping and mopping the tiles. But, that is typically the extent of it.
Nobody comes in to wipe down the shelves in your classroom library.
There is no little fairy to fly in each night and replace all of the math manipulatives to their proper locations, so you're ready to teach an amazing Guided Math lesson in the morning.
If teachers want the nooks and crannies of their classroom to be neat, tidy and dust-free, then they must take matters into their own hands.
It's important to do so for several reasons:
- Your classroom is your home away from home, and you want it to be a place you enjoy spending time.
- Not cleaning the classroom creates an unhealthy environment which will leave you feeling yucky and needing to use your substitute teacher plans more often than you would like to.
- Today's educational climate has teachers being forced to prove they are doing their job through teacher evaluation evidence binders, formal observations and also simply by what administrators observe when they walk into your classroom.
When it comes to cleaning the classroom, few things are as yucky as the computer keyboards.
The good news is there is an easy way to clean them out. I've blogged about how I use sticky notes to create a useful system for making to-do lists. I have also shared how I use sticky notes during lessons. I have a slight obsession with them. Well here is another useful way to use them.
Just fold a sticky note at the line where the sticky part and the paper meet. Run the sticky part between the keys to clean in between them by holding the non-sticky part. This makes an excellent addition to the classroom jobs you assign to students.
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