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Procedures [Question]

Keeping the art room Clean!

Started on Sep 01, 2012 by Jenncook678
Last post on Apr 07, 2013

I've been spending way too much prep time cleaning up the day to day messes in the classroom. What are some procedures or practices you use to keep up with the art mess that comes with the territory?

3 Keeps, 1 Likes, 9 Comments

  • jfrisco 09/01/2012 at 11:34am
    I have always had the same problem. I put the following procedures Prezi together. I am hoping that it helps. I also have signs all over my classroom for supplies. "A place for everything and everything in it's place." Lastly, I have 1-2 5th grade helpers assigned for each day of the week to come into the Art Room the last 15 minutes of the school day- they each have specific duties assigned to them... paper station manager, yarn management, table bin organizer, floor and counter top manager, glue and scissors manager, student storage manager, craft and recycle station manager, Art books manager, Art game shelf manager, sink manager, pencil sharpener manager, random supply manager, etc...

    It's tough to keep the Art Room clean and organized. I find that if I "share" my responsibilities with students and give up a little bit of control, it actually makes my life easier. :) Good luck! I'm looking forward to more comments on this tread. I always look for new and better ideas to manage this problem!

  • Jenncook678 09/01/2012 at 01:14pm
    My idea for this year was going to have one student per day on sink and clean up duty (I find my sink is the worst mess of them all and it leads to ruined brushes, an art teacher's worst nightmare)! The responsibility would rotate on a daily basis.
    Jfrisco it sounds similar to your idea, I'm reassured to hear that it seems to be working for you! Perhaps if it goes well I'll be able to add more duties like the ones you mentioned :) *fingers crossed*
    Thanks for the extra ideas.

  • AmyHall 09/02/2012 at 10:29am
    I love the idea of having 5th graders help out at the end of the day. I've been able to have a few students do that as part of our Service Learning program, however it only happened 4 or 5 times last year when the kids weren't off campus working on a project.
    Jfrisco - I couldn't view the prezi, it said I didn't have pernmission, but would love to see it.

    As far as Art table bins - i did a 15 minute activity with each class last week where I started each class with empty bins and all of the supplies put away and asked the kids what would be the most helpful to have on there tables... after some guided discussion, all classes came to the same list (pencils, erasers, scissors, glue, sharpie, ruler) each table then then went on a scavenger hunt to find all of the needed materials. We also made a list of what NOT to put in the bins. So far, so good... I think they are all proud of the bins and are working to keep them clean.

  • imagiNATION 09/02/2012 at 09:52pm
    I always have helpers each day in charge of the floor - to pick up scraps and materials that drop. I have early finishers start to clean up paint dishes as time allows, and use baby wipes for the kids to wash their hands and tables which keeps the tables clean and sanitary. I have all of the kid's materials color coded for tables and each table is in charge of their materials. It isn't perfect but for the most part we keep a pretty clean room. I think giving kids ownership is really the key.

  • andreafuentes 09/12/2012 at 05:08pm
    I rotate art helpers as well, 3-4 per class. My art room is very small and packed with students, with only 1 sink; so we have to improvise.

    If there are helpful students who are finished early, I draft them into organizing colored pencils or brushes.

  • AmyHall 09/26/2012 at 03:49pm
    Magic erasers are a Godsend! I try to get a parent to donate them... they clean oil pastel in a heartbeat!!!

  • lhARTz 02/25/2013 at 01:34pm
    Each day, I time each class to clean up. They know where things go and how it should look because I have laminated photos and labels everywhere. I don't stop the timer until everything is back where it belongs, looking just as nice or better than it was when they got there. Then we keep a running total of their time. After each 6 weeks, the class with the lowest time in each grade gets an "Art Party." Usually I have a small treat and art stations around the room. This is pretty good motivation for them to keep the room looking nice.

    I also have a group of 5th graders come every other day the last 15-30 minutes of school. I have a chart with daily duties, they cross off as they get them done. Things on that list include refilling the paper towels, making sure all glue bottles are shut, clearing off the drying rack, washing the tables, and finding anything out of place and returning it home. Those are my priority. I have about 10 student helpers so sometimes this takes them only about 10 minutes. I usually have a few additional tasks for them to help me with, including taking down and sorting the art from the halls! They always LOVE to do that and it's a huge time saver for me.

  • Monlisamama 04/07/2013 at 10:43am
    I have a couple of high school students come to my elementary art room once a week. They come after school and help with my kindergarten class. Then they stay and organize brushes, wash paint cups, etc.
    They get community service hours for helping.
    I also use as much disposable stuff as possible. Egg cartons for paint, old catalogue pages for mixing paint or rolling out ink, yogurt containers and plastic baby food containers, too. If they are too messy to save, I toss them. With very little time to prep and every grade level every day, I have to cut corners on the mess build up.