Anyone who has taught school knows that there is no tired like teacher tired, especially at the beginning and end of the school year. Even though the beginning of the year is hard, it's new, fun, and fresh. By the end of the school year, I'm not only physically tired, but I'm emotionally exhausted in every way imaginable. That's why year after year as soon as the school year winds down, I find myself cramming everything I have into cabinets and boxes, without paying any attention to what I'm doing or why I'm doing it. Then at the end of summer, I have no idea where my things are, and it takes me a ridiculous amount of time to get my room ready for the start of a new school year.
While this may have taken a few extra minutes, I'd much rather do it now rather than when I use them for the first time next year. We'll do this with all of our manipulatives (unless they don't need to be in a set). When is gets closer to the end of the year, I'll also make sure all of my books are in the correct baskets and none of my games have missing pieces. I'm always surprised at how helpful my students can be with this process.
Please let me know if you have any other great tips for packing your classroom! I'm always looking for ways to improve!