Thursday, October 28, 2010

Classroom Cubbies: One Size Does Not Fit All

Keeping your classroom stocked, clean, and organized is almost as important as choosing the right lesson plans. (Okay...maybe not THAT important but it's a close second!) Purchasing baskets, bins and shelving units are a great start for storing supplies and lesson materials; but it is equally important to help students keep themselves organized and ready to learn. Here are five tips to think about when implementing classroom cubbies to give your class a head start!

1. Choose cubbies that are large enough for everything you want stored off the floor and out of desks. You can find some models that are less expensive, but they are generally smaller in size and not as sturdy for holding things like books and backpacks. They also won't have a lifetime warranty against defects. Penny wise and pound foolish will be hard on your budget in the long run.


2. Let your cubby station show a little personality if the class warrants a little show time! Choose models that come in bright colors or if you prefer wood, plastic bins are easy to find in a rainbow of colors and help kids find their space quickly. This not only adds a little extra fun and flavor to the classroom, but helps kids remember which cubby belongs to whom.

3. If you purchase a larger cubby unit, be sure you find one that will not tip under extreme weight and pressure. Tip proof cubbies won't fall over, no matter how rambunctious your class gets. Parents will also appreciate that you're considering their child's safety. They want to trust that you have their kids best interest when furnishing your surroundings.

4. Buy cubby holders that are suitable for multiple age groups, especially if you buy portable models. This ensures that should classrooms be moved around, you have multiple age groups in one room, or the unit has to be moved: you are prepared for kindergarteners and Pre-teens alike. Believe it or not some cubbies come with casters and are fairly easy to move if built correctly.


5. Don't buy cheap! 

If we've peaked your interest, check out our line of Jonti-Craft classroom cubbies. They feature:

  • KYDZ Safe edges: All edges, front, back and base are fully rounded to create KYDZSafe edges. The recessed backs enhance the strength and appearance
  • KYDZ TUFF finish: Finish is as tough as the coating used on gym floors. Resists stains, won't yellow and is easy to clean.
  • KYDZ Strong: Construction employs the dowel pin technique. This leaves the thickness of the material intact where most of the stress occurs. Increases the already noteworthy strength of the piece by 30% or more.
Let's be very honest. A good cubbie is going to be expensive. You can't run down to the local store and get a 300 pound unit for $99. Intermediate to excellent units are typically made to order and ship by truck factory direct. However the long term value far outweighs buying a discount unit that WILL fall apart. If you only cater to very small children you can get away with a cubbie that has a low profile and not subject to being run into and climbed upon. But as they grow, so grows kids curiosity about high they can climb and lets see if we can tip this thing over. Hey it's in the nature, being curious is good, isn't it?

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