Center Storage On a Budget

Monday, April 11, 2016

If you are like me, you find yourself buying a lot of things for your classroom. Cubbies are not cheap (like 300+ not cheap). Sometimes I feel that teacher stores do not understand that we are an underpaid profession. 

Most of the cubbies at our school were purchased with grant money and those are given out twice a year. Also, TONS of teachers apply and the likelihood of getting one is not very high. So I decided to improvise.

I have turned shoe racks and dollar tree baskets into my math center storage AND rainbow rolling carts (organizers) for my literacy storage.

This is a picture of my library center sitting on top of my math center storage. There are 4 shoe racks there and 24 baskets!

These shoe racks were purchases from Lowe's for 13$ a piece. There are 4 total. They also hold my classroom library center as well on top perfectly! Great way to save space.  13x4= 52$

I couldn't find this exact one on the Lowe's website but target had something similar for only 10.50! That's even cheaper. Yay target!!!

These are stackable and I have them in a Mocha brown. 

The dollar tree baskets were 1$ and it holds 24 of them. I also have colored shoe box size containers that I can use but I liked the baskets because they can hold recording sheets. They only came in 4 colors so I spray painted the purple and the yellow ones. That way I can have center groups go to color coded centers if I want. EVERY students gets their own center this way. GAME CHANGER! 

Total cost: 76$
Total time: 20 mins of assembly 
Total storage capacity: 24 centers

You may able to build something cheaper with PVC pipe but this was definitely the EASIEST DIY and convenience is key for me! 

Literacy center storage cost a little more but still much cheaper than buying cubbies. I found these for 25$ each at Sam's Club. Grand Total 100$. As you can see I put yellow duct tape on the front of 6 of them because I have 6 groups I put my students in for centers. If you don't have that many, you can skip the duct tape.

What is so great about these is that I have 40 individual centers ready that the kids can rotate through. 40 CENTERS!!! You will have to train the kids on how to pull the tubs out and put them back in or you could have a helper do it for you. It really only took a couple of days to get used to it. These will also fit a clipboard and recording sheet. I use baskets on the top for the students to turn in their recording sheets and the jars are my I-Spy jars. That'll be in another post. My kids LOVE those.

You may only need one or the other but each option cost less than 100$!!!

Total cost: 100$
Total time: 1-2hrs of assembly 
Total storage capacity: 40 centers

The great thing about having so many centers is that you do not have to change them out very often. TUBS are only part of my rotation as well as the BASKETS for math. I give my kids a ton of choices and centers run smoothly but I'll save that for another post. ;)

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