Introduction: How to Stay Organized for School

Picture of How to Stay Organized for School

Many people do not know how to organize their school supplies well, so they end up losing things, including assignments, pens, and pencils. This instructable will show you several ways to keep all of your supplies for school organized so that you do not lose any assignments or materials

Step 1: The Value of Quality Supplies

Picture of The Value of Quality Supplies

When you are out buying supplies for school, buy quality supplies. Don't get cheap products that you know will not last you the entire year. For example, get glossy plastic folders instead of the paper ones. Even though it may cost a bit more to get quality supplies, it will be worth it.

Step 2: Binders

Picture of Binders

Binders are a very important part of staying organized.

Tip 1: Keep one 1" binder for each subject you have.

Tip 2: Divide each binder into sections using dividers; i.e. make 1 divider for classwork, 1 for completed homework, and 1 for completed tests. You can add more depending on the subject.

Tip 3: Buy a different colored binder for each subject and make sure they have plastic pockets on the front cover. You can slide a piece of paper with the class name and your name on it. 

Step 3: Notebooks

Picture of Notebooks

Taking notes is a very important part of school. There several tips and tricks you can use to keep your notes organized.

Tip 1:  Use the outer margin of your page to put key words and terms from the lesson.

Tip 2: Title each section of notes and put a date next to it. 

Tip 3: Buy 1 notebook for each subject that has the same color as each of your binders.

Step 4: Accordion File

Picture of Accordion File

Accordion files are an easy and simple way to keep papers organized.

Tip 1: Use accordion files to keep all of your homework assignments that you have not yet turned in organized.

Tip 2: Buy an accordion file that is covered in cloth. Do not buy one that is all thin plastic, as these fall apart very easily.

Tip 3: Some accordion files come with pencil cases attached. These are very useful for keeping your pens, pencils and papers in one place.

Step 5: Planner

Picture of Planner

Use a planner so you can keep track of your homework assignments so you don't forget anything.

Tip 1: Get a large planner. My school gives out small planners (4" X 6") and they are very difficult to use because you have to write with very, very small letters. Many large planners also include useful information in the back (formulas, useful websites, etc.)

Tip 2: Actually use your planner. I know this may sound weird, but I know students that buy fancy planners and just let them sit in their lockers all year.

Step 6: Locker

Picture of Locker

Keep your locker organized! If you just throw stuff into your locker, you will have a hard time finding things for your next class and you may forget something.

Tip 1: Use a shelf to organize your supplies. Keep your binders and notebooks on the top of the shelf and keep your textbooks below. If you put your textbooks on top of your shelf it may weaken and / or break the shelf.

Tip 2: Use Magnets to hang things in your locker such as notes about upcoming tests.

Tip 3: You can make a whiteboard for your locker at minimal cost by putting a piece of blank white paper inside of a clear plastic sleeve. If you write on this with a dry-erase marker, it will erase with ease.

Step 7: Backup Supplies

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Just in case someone steals some of your supplies or you lose some, keep some extra pens, pencils, and maybe a notebook in your locker.

Step 8: Personalize

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Have Fun! Decorate your school supplies. You can use stickers, paper, markers, or anything else to decorate your items. Have fun and be creative!

An example shown below is how I personalize my accordion file. 


OmotO1 (author)2017-01-08

you did a good job helping

loook a my locker:)

FreyaS1 (author)2016-09-09

my school doesn't allow shelves in lockers but I wish they did as it really annoying searching through everything ?

JennaHenna (author)2016-07-21

I meant neater fashion- autocorrect :)

JennaHenna (author)2016-07-21

I think it may be best to have a 3 or 5 subject notebook to write all your notes down in- then transfer them in a water fashion into a journal that's meant for that subject... If that makes any sense.

CateJ1 (author)2016-06-19

Where do you buy the binders you have in the picture? What is the brand?

hjean09690 (author)2015-09-13

Where do I fund that accordion folder

Julie2016 (author)hjean096902016-01-15

They might have it in Staples or a Bic store but just go on eBay or Amazon for the easiest findings with no complications.

cjharrison0325 (author)2015-11-02

thank you so much for this..planning on implementing it asap :)

Countrychick-KZIE (author)2015-07-20

Wee do u get an accordaian file like that

wendell.cotton.3 (author)2014-11-12

I substitute teach after 16 years in the classroom. I only remember a handful of students who had organized notebooks and used their personal or school issued planners on a regular basis. Most of the student's information can now be stored on any electronic device that almost every student has at their disposal during the school day. But your seven steps are still what is needed by high school students who are serious in getting a quality high school education. Thanks for putting this together.

Coach C

filesabove (author)2014-09-02

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ashleaf (author)2014-07-16


mpeterson15 (author)2013-12-13

I like the knife in the first pic XD

antrobus (author)2011-07-18

I would rather get poor quality binders as long as it holds my stuff and doesn't break it works

You can reinforce your binders with duct tape. Just put a strip or strip and half on the spine (overlapping on to the front and back) and a half strip on each edge, with half of each strip on each side (inside and outside). It's even better if you get two colors and put a stripe down the spine.

loopyloop75 (author)2013-09-01

My school doesn't use textbooks. And when we rarely do look at textbooks, we don't keep them in our lockers. And my school have given us our own planners which double as hall passes but the worst thing is that how most middle/high schools let you carry your backpack well my school doesn't let us but this 'ible was good(sorry my thing is long)

gabbydawn (author)2013-07-28

We're did u buy the accordian folder ??

Dr. Who (author)2012-09-01

i like your folder, except, you know, its apple.

ilpug (author)2012-07-19

My best bit of advice for organizing is to not get a locker. Lockers allow you to leave stuff behind so much more easily.

jazzybluelovesyou (author)2012-06-14

My school gives out planners too and i thought it was a stupid waste of time but it helps me remember everything from homework to birthdays

mason0190 (author)2011-05-15

My school gives out planners, but they double as detention holders, triple as hall passes, quadruple as formulas and websites, quintouple as address books, and a whole nother word as student handbooks. You can get a detention if you're caught in the hall without one.

applefanatic (author)mason01902011-08-11

me 2 :( its stupid i think!

antrobus (author)2011-07-18

those kinds of locker shelves suck get I had this one that expanded and stuck to the walls of the locker

hintss (author)2010-09-01

you forgot the netbook in case you're permabanned from the computers like I was :), and Linux FTW!

sassy8girl (author)hintss2011-01-07

what did you do to get perma-banned????

hintss (author)sassy8girl2011-01-08

it rhymes with hatch while

mason0190 (author)hintss2011-05-15

Do you mean... *ahem*... Batch file?

BunnyLover (author)2011-02-07

My mothers office had several of the cloth ones so I "borrowed" one and use it for school and I haven't forgotten an assignment for the past month or so.

saxmaster765 (author)2010-09-05

Comment on "Tip 2" . . .  Amen, brother.   Amen.  I have gone through so many plastic ones that rip within two or so day.  I tend to keep everything in them:  homework and all.

My new-ish cloth case has to be the strongest accordion file I've ever owned and has withstood everything I've thrown at it.  I bought it at staples for around $13.

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