…and everything in it’s place. When I first began teaching preschool, I inherited a classroom that was in the basement lounge of a college dorm. (Really.) The Center was still fairly new, so most of our furniture was donated shelves, & hand-me-downs. We had cars stacked on puzzles shoved on Legos in the corner full of dolls by the books with the dishes and the papers….. it was just chaos. Every few days I would storm around in a silent fury in the afternoon wondering why I was the only one who kept the room presentable. One day I voiced my opinion and a co-worker meekly said, “Well, I’d clean up, but I don’t know where anything goes.”
Life changing moment: A few weeks later I attended a church that had a preschool and I snuck a quick look. It was the Hoy Grail of ‘A-Ha’ moments. Along one entire side of the room, somebody had made a floor-to ceiling wall of cubbies – each about a cubic foot – and inside each cubby was *gasp* ONE item. Plus there was a picture of the item in the cubby to show where it should go!!! (In my memory this was all shining with a light brighter than the sun!)
You don’t need everything you have out all the time! Find someplace to store your excess (we’ll talk about trimming the excess at another time), and only have out some beatuifully displayed, great items that have their own place that is labeled!!