Monday, June 4, 2012

I'm Keeping the Desk

I just love this pic of a teacher's desk from long ago

At the end of every school year I'm always amazed at how cluttered my room is! It starts out beautiful at the beginning of the year and actually isn't too bad until May. Then suddenly the room seems to be closing in on me with anchor charts, student art work, books and center games.  Ugh. Then if that is not bad enough my desk usually looks as if it's a landfill. I'm always embarrassed if anyone goes to my desk to get a pencil, etc. Well this year I had the luxury of having a student teacher at the very end of the school year. It gave me a chance to really look at my room (good, bad and ugly) and reflect on what I really need to keep or change.  

I know there have been countless blog posts on whether or not to keep "the teacher desk."  I too thought about removing mine. My reasoning was that I never sit at it during the day and I of course could keep my things at a table with shelves nearby instead. I've also had some interesting issues with my teacher desks over the years. At one point when we were building our new school building we had to get rid of EVERYTHING. They wanted everyone to have the same furniture in each room and sold all of our existing furniture in an auction. I loved my first teacher desk and later located it (by accident) in a local antique shop and bought it for me to use at home! The wonderful new desk in my classroom was awful! The legs literally fell off one day in the middle of class! I also had quite a few bruises from trying to get the drawers to stay shut.  I finally pushed it off on  shared it with a new teacher and brought in a different antique desk from home. Now that we are in this building for over ten years we have all accumulated different furniture.  (By the way, the teacher that has my old desk loves it just as much as I did.) So considering my issues with desks I didn't think I would give it a second thought about not having one.    I took time drawing out floor plans of my room without a desk, I looked up blog posts on this topic and I gathered drawers and shelves that I could use. I organized my guided reading materials and was ready to put a table near this shelf and set up shop. I was all set to get rid of the desk!

Then one day after school and it was quiet in my room I sat down at my desk and got busy working on some long overdue paperwork. It was soooo nice having my own little space that was mine and I could keep all of the items that I really don't want the kiddos getting into. Plus I looked at all of my junk teacher materials that I would have to find new homes for. You can see some of this mess in the pic below.  My desk sits along side of my "stage"/reading center. It is right next to my storage closet and filing cabinets. Although I'm known for moving my room around (A LOT) during the school year, I do love having the desk near my teaching materials.

So I've decided that for next year I'm keeping the desk! I do need to make some changes though in order to keep it organized and a place where I can actually get some work done during planning periods and after school.  My desk is hidden for the most part. This would be an issue if I sat at it regularly during the day, but since I'm reserving it as an organized retreat for me to accomplish some work I'm actually happy it's in it's own little area. I also plan to keep some basic supplies at my reading table so that I'm not having to get things from my desk constantly during the day.  When I was blog stalking for organization ideas when not using a desk I did LOVE the  suggestion of using little drawers for basic office supplies! My desk has two big drawers and two little drawers. All four drawers have turned into bottomless pits these past couple of years. I ended up taking EVERYTHING out of the desk. Oh my was a 
mess.   I couldn't believe some of the stuff I had in there! So I decided to use the two large drawers strictly for files.  I then put many of my smaller office supplies that get lost easily in the organization drawers I had previously bought when I thought I was tossing the desk. They sit just fine on the top and make items easy to find in a hurry.
Don't you love my beach wall paper? I think I was really ready for summer vacation the day I took this photo!

My extra supply items actually fit quite nicely into the newly cleaned out smaller drawers!
So there you have desk transformation! I am still working on "decorating" the actual work space but that may require a few trips to Target. Oh well! Now that I've tackled the desk delima I need to start addressing some of my other organization issues in my room. It's a good thing they are using my room for summer school or I would end up spending all of my time there. For now I can sit back and enjoy my time off. I hope you are all getting a chance to do the same!

                                                         Mrs. M


  1. I have a desk too. I love having my own space.


  2. I think having or not having a desk is just a personal choice. I'm glad you figured out what was best for you. I noticed that you have lots of plants in your classroom. I love having plants in my room, too. They are beautiful to look at and you have the added bonus of cleaner air.
    Enjoy your summer break!

  3. My classroom is super small and so I decided to get rid of it for next year. I hope I am making the right decision. I am thinking all about organization too. That is what I posted about today! I like your classroom! Thank you for sharing.

  4. This is an issue that I have struggled with every year at our new building. I also have a 'new' desk that was purchased when we had to replace all of our old things. I love that desk as much as you loved your new desk and I have the bruises to prove it--lol. I am still trying to decide to keep for me or use as a station area. Well, I guess I have lots of time to think about it now that I am not moving too quickly!

    meet me at the zoo...

  5. I found you on Little Warriors and I'm your newest follower!

    Oh, the desk....I need mine, too. My room is very, very long and narrow. This past year, I had a fairly calm class and I was able to keep the desk in a corner near a closet and a bookshelf. I may need to move it back to the center of the room for the fall. I move my room around A LOT--everyone thinks I'm a bit nuts with the room arrangement!

    1. Thanks for following!! I love moving my room around...keeps life interesting!


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