Let’s talk centers {freebies too}!

Hey there!  I wanted to stop in and share with you how I keep my centers organized.   I won’t go into a lot of detail on how I run centers but you can view THIS detailed post about my literacy centers and THIS post for my math centers!  {Ps.  I will be sharing more updated information about my math centers soon!}. 
Let’s get started!  First off I wanted to share with you how I keep my centers organized on the kids’ end of it!  The picture below shows my math centers tubs 1-8.  Directly below my math center tubs are my  student free choice manipulatives.  I purchased my math tubs a couple of years ago from the Dollar Tree, but I have seen the same tubs there recently as well.  For the most part all materials fit nicely in the tub.  For some reason if the larger papers won’t fit we just put them directly below the tub.

 And another look at my math center tubs.

If you would like to get the numbered tags I used for my math center buckets you can download those for free directly below.

Below is how I organize my literacy centers!  This is kind of my main Daily five “hub” of material.  The top four green baskets are my listen to read baskets.  The blue baskets are our work on writing folders so the green and pink baskets are my word work {literacy center} baskets.  I purchased these baskets from Really Good Stuff {HERE}.  They are perfect to hold my paper protectors and more!  The are rectangle shape so to are deep enough to hold just about anything I need to put in them!

I like to use these small containers for my literacy centers.  I place small pieces or alphabet letters in them.  To hold my bigger literacy center pieces I use the zipper pencil pouches for binders.  I have used Zip-Loc bags too, but the kids seem to be “harder” on them and they get ripped OR they spend lots of precious time closing them 😉

Another look at my literacy centers storage…

For the teacher end of storing centers I LOVE to use binders!  I place each center in a sheet protector and have all the pieces slide right in as well.  I then have my centers organized by the theme and placed in order as I will use them in the year.  That way I can just flip through them quickly to the centers I am needing for that time!  I currently have two literacy center binders and one math {sorry- not labeled yet}.  One binder is for the first part of the year and then the second one is January-May.

Here are some additional snapshots of the inside of my binders.

If you would like to download my freebie binder covers you can get those below!

As for how often I change out my centers it really just depend but it’s usually about every two weeks.  Sometimes sooner, but no more than two weeks.  I also don’t change out ALL centers when I do.  I keep at least one activity per basket {literacy} that the kids have learned prior.  This helps with those that are not able to complete all the tasks and useful for the quicker learners.
I also wanted to share with you my new bundle: Literacy and Math Centers for the YEAR!  Yes, one bundle and that’s it for the year….40 math and 40 literacy centers!  I have the centers mapped out for each month.  You can view more about the bundle and view previews of the activities by clicking on the image below!

Here is a look at the centers for January {math and literacy}

Literacy winter centers….

                                                                 Math winter centers….

 The bundle is on sale for an additional $10.00 off through 12/30/15!  View more by clicking on the image below.
Have a great week! Talk soon…..


  1. Hi Tara!! Could you please take a picture of your Literacy Binder opened so we may see what the inside looks like? I have so many of your centers that I think I could do this it is a great idea. Thank you!! Amy

  2. Brilliant! I love the idea of sheet protectors, I have used ziploc bags and they tend to slide everywhere and I end up having to buy yet another container! Binders are much more user friendly! Thanks

  3. I just wanted to say… I love your blog! I just started reading it and it has so many great tips and resources! I am a first year teacher and I am so happy I found your blog! Thank you! 🙂

  4. I am organizationally impaired. Do you organize your centers by season or skill? I have many that are seasonal and many that can be used at any time. I'm thinking 2 binders to keep them separate. Any thoughts?

    1. Hey there! I have my centers organized by when I will use them…so back to school then to summer. I also have generic centers in them binder as well that I will use throughout the year like CVC words, alphabet, etc. I do use two binders for my entire year! 😀

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