Join the Club


Do you have students with storage tubs or boxes that are stuffed to overflowing with books, pencils and paper? 
Are some students having difficulty locating their resources?
Are you tired of messy tubs and boxes?

Do you ask your students to tidy their mess but it still looks a mess after they have finished?

Try This:

Tell your students that today they are going to ‘join a club’.  To gain membership they need to organise their belongings. One they think they might be in the club they bring their tub or storage box to you for inspection. You will tell them if they have ‘joined the club’. 

To ‘join the club’ the students must have all their belongings in order.  See the criteria list and the before and after photos below.

  • Be pedantic, make sure every box or tub is organised correctly according to the criteria. 
  • Students will discover by trial and error how you want the resources organised.
  • Do not give any hints.
  • Do not tell the students how they will get in the club.
  • When they bring their tub or box to you either say, ‘Congratulations, you are in the club’  (Provide a hand shake), or ‘Keep thinking, keep going, you have not joined the club yet!’ Note the use of the word ‘yet’. The implication is that no matter how frustrated you may feel you will get it correct and join the club.  

Things you may observe:

  • A huge mess as students empty tubs and begin the process.
  • Students locating items they thought were lost.
  • Lost resources will be found. e.g. scissors, text books, notes, library books, newsletters, etc.
  • Students helping others.
  • Students observing each other to watch what is happening.
  • Shouts of joy when students are told they are in the club.
  • Some students may decide to do a pencil case clean out, that’s ok.

Note: There is no need to say what the club is or how you join the club. After doing it once the students get it!


  • Do Join the Club at the end of the week. Last session Friday is a great time. Once the students ‘join the club’ they can move on to Choosing Time.
  • Encourage students to keep their resources organised and stay in the club. How ?

At Pack Up time include in your message – It’s time to pack up now. Please put all your resources away and make sure you are in the club!

How to Join the Club – Tub Criteria:

    1. Books are stacked in height order.
    2. Books of same height and colour are together.
    3. All spines face out.
    4. Books are pushed to the corner of the tub.
    5. All extra resources are placed neatly in the tub.
Note: Pencil case goes on top.

How to Join the Club – Storage Box Criteria:

  1. All items are arranged in height order from tallest to shortest. 
  2. All books of the same height and colour are together.
  3. All spines face out. 
  4. All other items are placed in the box so you can access them easily. 

Alternative Ideas for ‘Join the Club’:

1. Real Life Reading Instructions Activity

  • Display the criteria list for students to access.
  • Students complete the task then show the results to see if they have joined the club.

2. Real Life Visual Prompts

  • Display the before and after photos. Students use the visual prompt to join the club.




  • Students will feel terrific the next day when they notice how quick and easy it is to locate their resources for a lesson.
  • Students enjoy the challenge of joining the club.
  • The next time you do ‘join the club’ the students will have it all organised very quickly, they know what the expectation is. All you need to say is, It’s join the club time!
  • You will feel great when you see all the students organised.

So why not try it today with your students and get them to feel the satisfaction of a job well done!


Extra Ideas:

  1. Rather than tell your students what they need to do use written instructions on the white board or screen. This will promote curiosity and focus. Point to the instructions then sit and wait for the students to bring their organised tubs or storage boxes to you for evaluation.
  2. Play music as the students start. If you want calm and quiet choose relaxation music.  If you are up for noise and excitement, play some rock and roll!