Archive for February 7th, 2011

Do you need a teacher desk? How can you tell if you do, or if it’s just a place where you collect stuff? Here are some tips to help you decide:

First, ask yourself: “Do I want a teacher desk?”

1. Is my desk a place where I rarely sit but use it for stacking lots of papers?
2. Do I find myself sitting at a clean table to do work after school instead of at my desk?
3. Is my desk taking up lots of space in my room?

If you answered YES to these questions, you might want to get rid of your teacher desk.

4. Does my school require that a teacher desk remain in my classroom?
5. Do I like my teacher desk and keep it organized?
6. Is my desk a lovely space I can call my own?

If you answered YES to questions 4-6, keep your teacher desk.
Here are some ideas for planning for your teacher space:

  • Place your teacher desk area away from the entrance and your flow of traffic.
  • Don’t use the best corner in the room for your teacher space. Share with your students. (It often makes a great library area!)
  • Plan for your teacher desk area to be near cabinets or shelves for storing your stuff.
  • Put a calendar and display board by your teacher area (for posting notes and reminders).
  • Provide a space for everything important that will need to be handled here.

This desk has become a clutter magnet

A traditional teacher desk doesn't have to take up lots of space

The front of this third-grade teacher's desk is turned into a poetry work station with the help of magnetic words from a kit.

Two students use a corner of the teacher's desk as a writing station.

You can find more tips in my book Spaces & Places: Designing Classrooms for Literacy.

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