My favorite hack this year was, by far, for water bottle storage. I’ve spent so much time telling my students to put water bottles away when they were supposed to be paying attention, watching spills ruin papers and send me back to the copier for replacements, and listening to the popping of lids as they open and shut. All the shuffling of the water bottles made me crazy and I was ready to outlaw them all together. However, hydrated students are healthy and ready to learn, so when I saw this idea, I had to try it. It was the BEST!
All you need is an over the door shoe bag. Mine holds 24 bottles. In my room kids come in each morning, fill their bottles, close the lid tightly, and find a spot for it on the door. Students are allowed to get up and get a drink from their water bottle during transitions and independent work time without asking permission as long as they don’t disrupt others. They are not allowed to get up for a drink while I am in the middle of a lesson. Kids can refill their water bottles at lunch if needed, and they take them home at the end of each day. It has save tons of time formerly wasted at the water fountain!