Don't have an account? To participate in discussions consider signing up or signing in
facebook connect
Sign-up, its free! Close [x]


  • okay Create lasting relationships with other like minded women.
  • okay Blogging, let your voice be heard!
  • okay Interact with other women through blogs,questions and groups.
  • okay Photo Album, upload your most recent vacation pictures.
  • okay Contests, Free weekly prize drawing.
  • okay Weekly Newsletter.

Love it

Any middle school teacher, or frustrated parent of a middle school student, can tell you that there is a strong correlation between a student's work habits, time management and organizational skills and his or her performance in middle school. How many times has a bright student with solid potential received a poor grade on a paper or assignment because it was turned in late, or been marked down a project because he or she didn't follow directions?  

organized binder studentMany students underachieve in middle school because they lack basic organizational skills. It's no surprise. They're young, they're inexperienced and there's a lot coming at them at a fast pace. Without good basic organizational skills, middle school students often become overwhelmed and can begin a downward spiral of underachievement that can last into the high school years and beyond.  

Let's face it - most middle school students have left the comfort of their elementary school having had little, if any, training in work habits, time management and organizational skills.  Being organized for success in middle school requires more than using a planner. It takes a comprehensive set of skills and strategies that are, in fact, easy to learn. So let's get started with one skill a week here at Fabulously40!  

At the top of the list is, of course, a Goof-proof Binder! Think of the binder as sort of a portable filing cabinet. It should be organized so that your student is able to find, file and retrieve papers and information quickly.

Here's how to organize a Goof-proof Binder:

1) Have a separate section (or even a separate binder) for each subject. Encourage your student to keep papers, homework and handouts separated and stored by subject. Never file language arts papers or handouts with science stuff, or math papers in the biology section—you get the idea.    

2) Use sheet protectors to preserve and protect important papers, like study guides,  reading lists/logs,  class rules, rubrics, etc. the kind of papers that your student must refer to frequently or over a long period of time.  Place these papers in sheet protectors in the front part of the subject section(s)  where they can be easily accessed.  Sheet protectors will also prevent them from falling out of  the binder and getting lost or trashed.  

3) Include one (2 pocket) poly-folder at the back of each subject section.  Use the left pocket for handouts used in class and work-in-progress.  The right pocket  is the "to and from" pocket, holding homework, permission slips, and papers that go to and from school and home.  Always put homework in the poly-pocket folder section as soon as it’s finished!  

4) Make sure each subject section has 25-30 sheets of binder paper and,  

5) Clutter-bust every couple of weeks.
Binders are not meant to be used for long term storage of papers.  

For more information about getting your child organized for success in middle school, about The Middle School Student’s Guide to Ruling the World!; or the S.O.S. (Student Organizational Skills) curriculum, go to  [Link Removed]  

Next week: Tool #2 - How is a Planner Like a Radar?

Please invite friends, other parents or teachers to read my blog, comment, ask questions, and visit my website at [Link Removed] and have a nice week!

Smulcaire, Your links have been removed, please consider upgrading to premium membership.

Love it

Member Comments

About this author View Blog »