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Easy Classroom Management Strategies For No Name Papers

Looking for effective elementary classroom management strategies for organizing the hundreds of papers that are turned in each day?  I know it can be an ordeal, especially if more than one paper is involved. If I had a dime for every minute I spent trying to figure out whose “No Name” paper belonged to, I would be rich! There has to be an easier way!!

For years I have been frustrated by this chronic problem too. First I would hold up the paper and ask “Who’s is this?” Please tell me you did this too. Of course, no one recognized their work. Then I tried having the entire class stand up. I would read the names of papers turned in. The student would sit when they heard their name. Not only did this waste valuable instructional time, I often had more than one student still standing after I read all the papers!

Well, I am going to share my All-Time FAVORITE classroom management strategies that solved this issue and saved tons of time.

I stumbled across this simple, yet time-saving idea from Jamie at 2nd Grade Stuff

Classroom Management Strategies – Clothespins Solution

Homework-with-clothespins1
clothespins-rack-full

How to Use:

Each student has a clothespin with their name on it. When the children have completed their assignment or homework, they clip their clothespin to their assignment before adding it to the assignment basket.

Now here is the genius part of this idea:

Immediately, with a glance, I can tell who didn’t turn in their work yet! I can verify if they need more time, or forgot to add their clothespin.

Missing-Homework-clips

Now, check out this bonus feature! No name? No problem! I know who this belongs to. Even though Ben forgot to write his name, he did remember his clothespin!

No Name paper Solution

All I had to do was simply remind the child to add his / her name to his paper.

Can you hear me singing the Hallelujah chorus?

Of all the classroom management strategies that I’ve incorporated in my career, this by far has simplified my workload.

How to Make Your Own

  • Clothespins – You can get colored ones at Michaels or colored clothespins
  • Acrylic Paint – 2 colors (if you have plain ones)
  • Permanent Marker
  • Basket for Assignment
  • Holder for Clothespins

What to Do:

  1. If you bought colored clothespins, skip to step 3.
  2. Apply acrylic paint to both sides of the clothes pins. Let dry completely. Make a few extras for new students, just in case.

2. Next, write the student names in permanent marker. I did both sides as a time saver later on when using the clothespins.

3. To display the clips, I chose a desk mail organizer (Amazon) but you could use a small bucket or basket just as well. I’ve seen these in Walmart and Target also.

Now some might ask, what do you do with all those clipped papers? After everything has been accounted for, one of my students has the job of removing the clips and placing them back on the rack for the next day. This was the perfect job for a student who has a long wait for their bus, or a student that is a fast finisher.

A teacher’s paperwork load is overwhelming and time-consuming without the headache of no-name papers. No more getting ready to load grades into your grade book only to realize you have two tests with no names and different grades. Of course, asking elementary kids to recognize their own handwriting is almost mission impossible. With this classroom management strategy, you’ll eliminate the guesswork and have more time for the important things.

I’d love to hear some of your fabulous time-saving classroom management strategies or tips! Please share in the comment section below.

If you would like more classroom management strategies, then check out this article titled, “6 Secrets to Calm the Chaos.”

  • Thank you for all you do!

  • Alison Monk

    When I started teaching, I quickly realized that student teaching didn't prepare me for the real challenges of being alone in a classroom full of young children. The learning curve was steep and time was limited. That is why I created the Literacy Garden. My hope is this will be a place for inspiration, mentoring, and connecting.

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    3 Comments

  • […] more classroom organization tips? You’ll find my favorite one at this post about handling no name […]

  • carol September 20, 2014 at 7:28 PM

    Ingenious, I don’t know why they forget to write their names.

  • Leave a Reply

    Hi! I'm Alison

    My #1 passion is all things literacy! I'm a curriculum creator and literacy specialist with over 30 years teaching in elementary classrooms. My goal is to share creative and engaging ways to grow your students and are easy to implement and academically sound. You can expect to find teaching tips to boost your confidence and grow your learners. You don't have to do this alone! I'm the support you've been looking for. I'm so glad you are here!

    About the Literacy Garden

    When I started teaching, I quickly realized that student teaching didn't prepare me for the real challenges of being alone in a classroom full of young children. The learning curve was steep and time was limited. That is why I created the Literacy Garden. My hope is this will be a place for inspiration, mentoring, and connecting.

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