One of the first things you’ll notice when you walk into my classroom is how much I adore using organizational tools from The Container Store. I always save up to purchase a couple special items for my classroom each year from their amazing selection. Over the past ten years, I’ve been able to slowly-but-surely design a learning environment that meets my organizational dreams and helps students work as self-directed learners. That organized space is something I’ve been missing dearly since I’ve started working from home.
A few weeks ago, I mustered up the courage to reach out to The Container Store and ask if they might be interested in collaborating to organize the classroom supplies that are now part of my home office. My love for their company multiplied when I quickly received an enthusiastic response from their team and we leapt into a very exciting work-from-home project designed to inspire teachers.
A Little Back Story
Before our baby girl Harper was born we needed to maximize the very minimal amount of closet space in our old home, so I decided to install Elfa shelving from The Container Store. As you know, I am a strong believer in eliminating visual clutter and the thought of all those baby necessities being added to our already very tight space started to make me a little nervous. Our Elfa shelving did not disappoint. The level of organization these shelving systems provides makes it feel like you’re magically creating space you didn’t know you had.
When we moved to our new home and I was planning my office space, I knew without hesitation I wanted to use Elfa shelving in some capacity to store all my most treasured classroom materials and work samples while I continue to work from home this year. As I decided which room would become my workspace and spent a few days dreaming up how to best create flow and calm in that space, I thought of all the teachers who were doing exactly that along with me.
Creating a teaching space in your home is not likely something you ever thought you’d be doing, and if you’re feeling a little frustrated by trying to find space for all the curriculum and supplies you just hauled through your front door, I highly recommend giving Elfa shelving a try. Here’s a peek at how I converted one of our bedroom closets into a space that keeps all my teaching supplies organized so I can maximize my productivity.
Creating A New Workspace
I picked a room in our home that has a rather large closet to set up my workspace because I knew I had a ton of resources that needed to be easily accessible. Before we moved, I had these supplies stored at my mother-in-law’s house in one of her spare bedroom closets where I could pop in and grab supplies as needed. Everything was organized in a sense, but never felt very easy to access because it was tucked away in boxes and bins, which put a massive damper on my productivity.
In our new home, I installed the Elfa shelving one afternoon while Harper was taking her nap. The installation was so smooth, and I only needed help from my husband for about ten minutes as I installed the bracket that holds the entire shelving system in place.
The step-by-step instructions included with my materials made it easy and fun to install each of the pieces, and I was able to finish in less than two hours without waking the baby.
As I started to unpack all the teaching resources that had been squeezed into the similar-sized closet at my in-laws house, I realized the Elfa shelving was going to provide me with a ton of extra space. I’m telling you these shelves have some sort of space-creating super power.
One of my favorite things about Elfa is how you can design and redesign your workspace as many times as you want until it feels just right. The shelves are easily-adjustable so you can pop them in and out, and move them around until all your classroom supplies fit just right. This also makes it easy to reconfigure and repurpose your shelving after you head back into your classroom and no longer need this space for teaching.
Once I had unpacked all my teaching materials and saw the extra white space surrounding my books and bins, I decided to dabble with a more styled look for my materials. The final design was just too beautiful to cover up with the closet doors we had taken off for the installation, so we tucked those away in the rafters of the garage.
Rather than feeling scattered like I did last year, I walk into my workspace and get the same giddy feeling I used to feel every morning I walked into my classroom. I am looking forward to many hours of work in my newly-organized space, and I hope seeing this closet transformation helps you envision how you can use Elfa for your own at-home teacher organization project.
It’s the absolute perfect time to organize your closet with Elfa because all Elfa products are on sale for 25% off at The Container Store through October 11, 2020.
A You Ready to Organize Your Own Home Workspace?
I am so grateful to The Container Store for collaborating with me to create this space and share it with you all. In celebration of their support for teachers who are looking to create a workspace for distance learning, they have also generously offered a $250 gift card for one lucky teacher in the Core Inspiration Community. If you would like to enter in this giveaway, read the Terms and Conditions here, and submit your entry on my Instagram post.
Thanks so much for the article! A very relevant topic at this difficult time.