Do you have a middle school age student who struggles with a disorganized school binder? This is a common challenge for middle schoolers as they face the new challenge of multiple classes, homework assignments and school projects. Many students need to be taught the skills of planning, time-management and organization, with specific focus on paper organization.
Mary Ellen Baker, who teaches executive function and time management support to students and adults, is hosting a course on binder organization this month, designed especially for middle school students. We thought this would be a great opportunity to chat with Mary Ellen, and ask her a few questions about how she helps students stay organized.
If you asked a Middle School-aged student to establish one single habit every day – without fail – what would it be?
Use a clear “in and out” folder to gather all the daily papers that you get at school. When you get home, empty the folder and use it the next morning to carry completed homework that you need to turn in that day. A clear vinyl folder is best for this, as it allows the student to see what is inside and can act as a visual reminder to hand things in.
What specific products do you recommend using for student binders?
Nine months of school is a long time and can be hard on cheap binders. I recommend ones that are strong and won’t disintegrate. 5 star makes great 3 ring binders. For dividers, use Avery Big Tab Insertable Two-Pocket Plastic Dividers. These are extremely durable and stick out beyond an A4 sheet of paper, making them really easy to see and use.
Is there anything else you would like us to know about the class?
Students are asked to bring sample school papers to practice with so they are familiar with how to process “real” paperwork. Organization can be good in theory but this class is designed to teach students how to manage these papers without ongoing parental guidance. Each student will receive a one-page guide “10 Tips for Binder Organization”.
Details on the Class
If you are in Portland Oregon and interested in joining Mary Ellen’s class, you can find more info below, or check her binder class event page.
When: Available classes will be held on December 9, 16, 29, 30
Where: 12470 SW 1st Street, Suite 201, Beaverton, OR 97005
Cost: $49 per person | Supplies included
For More Info and Registration, Click Here.