Saturday, May 17, 2014

Bright idea: Never Lose a Puzzle Piece Again!

It's Bright Idea time again, friends!

If you teach lower elementary, chances are you have puzzles in your classroom. 

And...if you have puzzles in your classroom,
you've probably dealt with lost puzzle pieces
or unsuccessfully tried to repair broken boxes.
How DO they get that way???

I feel your pain!

I want to share with you how I FINALLY organized my puzzles.

Super Easy Puzzle Organization Steps

1) Have your students put the puzzles together and check for lost pieces.


2) Once the puzzles are put together, assign each puzzle a number.
Have the students write that number on the backs of all the puzzle pieces
AND THE INSIDE COVER OF THE BOX.

Whenever we find a lost puzzle piece, we know right where it goes!

3) Throw out all the sad looking boxes (perfect way to lose pieces)
and replace them with plastic containers.
Move the pieces to your new puzzle containers.



It even looks cleaner!


4) Cut out the front covers and place in the plastic containers with the puzzles.
Then place the tops on the containers.
 Somehow my camera took a pic of the solar system puzzle instead of the bugs puzzle. Mind of its own...



5) Number the containers to match the puzzle inside, then put those babies on the shelf!
FYI: This year, I plan to put the number AND name of the puzzle on the outside!
Now the puzzles are ready for the kiddos to use!
That's it, friends! Super Easy!
This system has been a life saver in my classroom! 
Give it a try! You'll love it, too!


For more bright ideas from over 130 different bloggers,
 browse through the link-up below
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23 comments:

  1. Missing puzzle piectes drives me batty! I love this idea! Love the containers and matching numbers!

    I always tell my kids, "Check behind your behind to make sure you didn't leave anything behind!" It's good for a giggle, but it doesn't always work!

    Sally from Elementary Matters

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Love that, Sally! Ha! Ha! What we do to get things done! Happy Weekend!!
      Laura

      Delete
  2. Super ideas for organization. Looks so neat and clean too:)

    Tammy from The Resourceful Apple

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tammy, I had no idea it was going to look so much better! Makes me want to put everything in plastic containers!! Thanks for your kind words!!
      Laura

      Delete
  3. Replies
    1. It was super easy, and the kiddos loved being part of the organization! So glad you stopped by!!
      Laura

      Delete
  4. That is a bright idea! I need to invest in some plastic tubs. Thanks!
    Kelly
    I'm Not Your Grandpa, I'm Your Teacher

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kelly, buying plastic containers has been one of my best investments! I love the clean, fresh look AND how easy it is to find the puzzles now!! Happy Weekend!!
      Laura

      Delete
  5. What a great idea! I was wondering what size tub did you use? Thanks!!
    Jennifer

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Jennifer! For the floor puzzles, I used 11" x 14". I used sandwich size containers for the smaller puzzles and shoe boxes for other med-large puzzles. Thanks for stopping by!
      Laura

      Delete
  6. Great idea--I've used Gallon bags but the puzzle pieces never fit! This is pinned and on my to-do list! :)

    Megan
    Mrs. Wheeler's First Grade

    Mrs. Wheeler's TPT

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for pinning, Megan! It's worked well so far! There are always a few OCD students who check to make sure they are in order! Ha! Have a great week!
      Laura

      Delete
  7. Oh my goodness!!! Such a smart, smart, smart idea. Thank you for sharing :)
    Elizabeth
    Fun in Room 4B

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Elizabeth! Thanks so much! One day, my classroom will be organized! One day!!
      I'm glad you stopped by!
      Laura

      Delete
  8. Thanks for sharing this great tip. Where did you get the containers to store your puzzles?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey, there! I actually got the containers at Wal-mart, but they're Sterilite so I think you could find them anywhere. The floor puzzles are 11" x 14". Hope that helps!
      Laura

      Delete
  9. I just organized my puzzles using empty wet wipe containers. They fit perfectly and stack nicely on my shelf, but best of all, they're free!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ooh, that's perfect and easy on the pocket book! Love it! Thanks so much for sharing, Dawn!! Happy Summer to you!
      Laura

      Delete
  10. Replies
    1. Hey, Barb! I wish I had done this sooner!! Hope your summer is coming soon, my friend!
      Laura

      Delete
  11. Love this!

    Linda
    Down the Learning Road

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey, Linda! Thanks so much! It looks so much better and is actually working! Ha! Happy Summer!!
      Laura

      Delete
  12. I saw this years and years ago when my own kiddos were tiny and did it right away. I just used ziplocs because we were at home. When I became a teacher and had my own classroom, I kept some ziplocs and re-purposed some other containers. My girls had some suitcase style plastic cases that came with some kind of art supplies and these were my fave. Thanks for sharing this one!

    ReplyDelete

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