Bathing Suits! Already?

This happens every year. I go to Target to buy mittens for our annual snow

trip.  When I arrive at Target this is the scene I see.


That’s right folks. No mittens to be found. It’s time to buy a bathing suit!

In January!!!
That’s Rude… I need mittens.

Now this is less crazy here in Sunny So. California because it can be 40

degrees and rainy one day and 80 degrees for a week afterward.

But is this what you see where you live?

Are you using your snow blower and

buying a bathing suit at the same time???

Seems cuh-ray-zee to me!

You know what else is crazy?

Spending all your prep time remaking

Anchor Charts every year.

Anchor chart

Well, I have a little bright idea for you.

This is what my anchor charts end up looking like…
Perhaps because I hang them on my door….

It’s the only spot in my classroom not covered with

mammals of the woods right now.

I like teaching with Anchor Charts.  I find them powerful revisiting tools,

and it makes the learning concrete.

But look at all that artwork…

…..ripped up by wild first graders….

……RUNNING like wild things walking politely to recess……

I love my cute hermit crab guy… Should I throw him away???

No Way!

I just cut off the awesome art!


Then, I file it with the corresponding story.

It is ready to be taped onto next year’s chart.


I love using plastic sheet protectors as file holders.

I am always worried something will fall out of a traditional file folder.

But you can fling a sheet protector full of papers across the room

{Frisbee style}

and NoThInG will fall out.
Plus my file box stay nice and neat.

This is my Houghton Mifflin drawer.


These are my Trimester 1 and 2 and 3 files in their drawer……

I used plastic folder dividers to dived the trimesters.
You can see a row of them in the very back of the drawer.


I buy these plastic sheet protectors in bulk.

At $10 for 100 that is pretty cheap.

I wait for the sale at Staples and then buy 3 at a time.

This filing system works so well for me.

If a file gets too full, then I staple two together and off I go.

Here is how it works if I have a really big “file” like

my Mammals of the Woods curriculum.
Each mammal has their own stapled file.




It works for me and thank God it does. 

My classroom always has a little bit of a mess in one spot or another,

but if you come in my room and ask me

“ Do you have a copy of the _______________ you gave me last year”

I can have it in your hands in less than 30 seconds….maybe 45.

I lOvE this system!


  1. A girl after my own heart...NO bathing suits in January, & an organizer!!
    LOVE this!

    Amy Howbert
    Little Miss Organized

    1. Oh my blog has gone crazy. Instead of my replies going under each of your comments.... It appears that they are just getting added to then end.... Strange... Guess the new comments code still isn't working :0( it looks great on the iPad... But on my computer ... Not so much!

  2. I love this idea. I have become a huge anchor chart person this year. Don't get me wrong, I used them in the past, but this year they are just lending themselves nicely to EVERYTHING! With this idea, I can save some parts of the charts and not spend so much time recreating them next year. Thank you for making next year a little smoother.


  3. My Target trip is scheduled for Tuesday- If I go and see the wall of swimsuits I am going to just start cracking up!! we'll see.... I love your filling system! I just moved to binders for everything, but I really really love your idea!

    Smiles from 2nd Grade

    1. Katie, the sheet protectors can go right into a binder, which is what I do for my giant science units! Love your name.

  4. I love your filing system! I think I will have to start my own. Thanks!

    Mrs. Bartel’s School Family

  5. SMART!! I love the page projectors and stapling idea.
    Totally stealing this!

    1. There is going to be filing party in your room!

  6. I am torn with seeing the bathing suits this year. Usually I am annoyed just like you but this year I have my honeymoon in October so it just makes me want to buy them all. Haha, not good on my wallet to say the least. Your organizing is amazing! Thanks for sharing. :)


    1. Congrats on getting married! So happy for you! We had an October wedding as well!

  7. Ugh. I can't stand to see bathing suits out this early. RiDICulous!! And you are right- you can't find mittens or hats in case of snow but there's the bikini. I guess we could use a bathing suit as a's a thought...

    Collaboration Cuties

  8. I love all of these ideas. I feel a little sad every time a toss an anchor chart. I never thought of saving the pieces that make it through the school year alive. Love the page protectors too!

    And swimsuits have been out at my Target for a couple of weeks now. I am in Northern California and it is NOT bathing suit weather!! :)

    Lattes and Laughter

  9. I love this idea for anchor charts!! Thanks for sharing! :)

    And yes, I was a bit annoyed at Target, too, when pretty much right after Christmas they had swimsuits out!!!

  10. What a wonderful filing system! So much better than file folders!

    Our Target in VA has had bathing suits out for a couple of weeks, supposedly for cruise season. Ummm...we're not all going on a cruise! Oh well! Our grocery store is about the only place to get gloves right now, and it is cold here. Good luck!

    Reading Toward the Stars

  11. I love your unit organization system. I think I may have found a big summer project for me since my files have runneth over (especially since discovering TPT!)

    1. It is such a great time to get everything organized! I love summer!

  12. Wow! Super organized! We are blessed enough to be able to order from Office Depot online with our Purchase Order money. I get a box of 100 sheet protectors for less than $2! Their prices for teachers online are amazingly low.
    I don't want to even think about a bathing suit yet.

    Adventures in First with Mrs. Key

    1. Dawn you can get them for 2 dollars!!!! That is wonderful!

  13. Ummm mental head slap! Pure genius! That's one thing we dread the most is spending time on a cute lil illustration just so it can go in the trash the following week. Love this idea! Thanks so much for sharing Katie!
    ~Christy & Tammy
    Fluttering Through First Grade

  14. Yowza! What a great files are a mess no matter how many times I try and straighten them out. I am also just salivating at all of your Houghton Mifflin stuff. Do you ever sell or give away units that go along with the stories? Thanks for sharing a peak into your awesome room.

    1. I do have plans to begin putting up theme packs. Thanks for the nudge !

  15. Amazing how quickly they put out bathing suits every year. Definitely helps with those New Year's resolutions ;) Your hermit crab is totally cute, glad you could save it.

  16. In looking at the pictures, am I seeing only 2 pages in each protector? Or is there more in them?

  17. This must happen the world over. Here in Australia where it's hot until about May, they bring out winter gear in February !! It could still be 100F outside but we can't buy a swimsuit, only a cardigan. Crazy.

  18. Don't get me wrong, I hate the thought of getting in a bathing suit right now, but I do understand why target does it. Apparently, the winter months are so dreary that a lot of people and by people I mean rich people with great bodies take cruises or flights to the Caribbean to get away from it all. I guess the rest of us can just use the swimsuit wall as motivation for the summer! haha

  19. I love that filing system! I'm a big fan of binders but some things just work better in a filing cabinet. I love page protectors but I never thought of using them as file folders. Brilliant! Your way looks nicer than file folders too. :) I think I may be buying a bunch of page protectors this weekend...
    Sarah's First Grade Snippets

  20. What am I missing here? It seems like they would slip and slide in the file drawer. No?

  21. Hey! Im happy to be your newest follower! I know this is a way old post of yours, but I just came across your blog while I was looking at some organization ideas...and like this!
    Plus, I am so the girl who bought the bathing suit from Target in January. Hey, you never know when a good hot tub road trip may pop up in your schedule!

  22. How do you keep the page protectors from falling in the filing cabinet drawer? Seems like the wouldn't stand up??

  23. LOVE this idea!! I've been working for the last 5 years to find a method that keeps on working through the year and I think I've found my new one to try!!! Super excited to see if it works for me! Thanks again! Just found your blog via a friend's recommendation. Super cute and great ideas!!

  24. Thanks Katie for a great organizing idea! Sheet protectors are my friends!

  25. How do you keep the page protectors standing up? Do you have file folders in there at all?


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