Getting off to a Good Start in September

The art room is full of materials that are easily lost or damaged. If acrylic paint dries on a brush, the brush becomes trash. Scissors that are lost cost lots of money to replace; money that could be better spent on other materials. For that reason, I like my students to each be  an “expert” in one weekly chore. I take the time to show them how to do their jobs correctly and they take pride in taking care of whatever material they have been assigned to. With 425 students in grades K-5, I can’t rely on myself to remember who does what and when.

This chart is created before school even starts, and will hang where all can see it in the art room. What you can’t see on this version of the chart is that each job is assigned a number that reflects their place on the list. Art Cart is #1, Messenger is #2, Drying Rack #3, etc. My students all wear t-shirt smocks, and their numbers are written on the left sleeve. It not only tells everyone what job the child is assigned to, but also what seat he or she sits in. Substitute teachers love me!

I am now busy typing individual, self adhesive name labels. I use Avery, #5160 or Press-a-ply 3″ X 1″address labels.  They come 30 to a sheet and I always set aside one sheet per class, even though my classes all have less than 30 children in them. Each label has typed on it (even before school opens) the child’s name, grade, class and job number. The children are required to put their labels on their papers even before they start to work! These labels, with the bottom job line  job cut off, identify work hanging on bulletin boards and saves me time when I am making displays. We lose far less art now than we did when I started teaching. It took many, many years to work out a fool proof system, so be my guest and benefit from all my years teaching.

I used Excel for my Job Chart. Once created, you just have to delete last year’s names and add the new ones this year and you a good to go!

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