Now that we have survived another winter, it is time to tackle all of the dust and cluttered papers that have been hibernating! About this time every year, I feel overwhelmed by all of the spring cleaning that needs to be done. Classrooms are especially demanding because of all the materials, papers, and furniture crammed into one room. However, I have found that tackling the inevitable as soon as possible always becomes worth it, and you will be patting yourself on the back once the end of the year roles around! To help ease my anxieties, I like to follow these tips for spring cleaning in the classroom:

  • Formulate A Plan- Divide the classroom into sections and number them. Tackling these sections one at a time keeps me focused. Running from one area to another becomes a lost cause, which never leaves me feeling accomplished.
  • Declutter First- Throw out all of those broken crayons, floating papers, and knick-knacks that serve you no purpose anymore. In fact, get your students involved! This is a great time to have students practice teamwork by assigning them to a section of the classroom, and rewarding teams who collect the most clutter in a trash bag. Most of that junk was probably theirs to begin with!
  • Creating Piles- This part is crucial to re-establishing organization in the classroom. Create piles for items to donate, items to throw out, items to return, and maybe even garage sale items. I have found that putting these piles in a box or bin will keep the system from becoming mayhem.
  • Clean From Top To Bottom- Now it’s time to pull out the cleaning supplies! I prefer not to have chemically-laden sanitizers and serums hanging around on my stuff, so I opt for natural products. If you choose to use strong products, try opening your windows to dilute the fumes. Start cleaning the walls first, working your way to the floor. This rule particularly applies to dusting—once you finish dusting from top to bottom, you want the vacuum to pick up any last remnants.
  • Redesign- Now that the classroom is essentially clean, I love to rearrange and redesign areas in the room. Bulletin boards are the perfect place to start! For more inspiration, check out our Bulletin Board Ideas, Classroom Arrangement Ideas, and Classroom Library Pinterest boards for ways to restructure areas in your classroom.
  • Maintain- Now it’s time to maintain the cleanliness throughout the rest of the year! The Teacher’s Lounge shares teacher-tested Tips for Keeping the Classroom Clean that would be fun to use.

What are some tips you have found to be effective for spring cleaning the classroom?