Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Teacher Tip: Media Cart Modification

Occasionally, teachers no longer want or need a particular piece of furniture or equipment.  I inherited a gray metal book cart in May, first-come-first-serve style.

That's right, I jogged walked safely (yet quickly) up the hallway to retrieve it when the teacher sent out the come-and-get-it email.

Mobile vertical storage comes in handy for kindergarten students.  Materials can be rolled to different parts of the classroom or hallway, and the backside of the cart, with a teeny tiny modification, can become an additional display surface.

This year, I want to hang chart/writing paper tablets on the back of the cart.  Heavy duty magnet clips worked for one chart, but they weren't strong enough to hold two.  Hello Command Hooks!  I chose the style with the metal hook and bead since I figured they'd fit through the holes that are punched through every page of the tablets.

I positioned the chart tablet where I wanted it to hang, and slid a hook into the backside (without removing the clear strip from the adhesive) so I could determine where to anchor the hook.  Once I knew where it needed to be, I marked the bottom of the white plastic against the metal with a pencil, and then removed the clear strip.  Carefully positioning the hook, I pressed it firmly against the cart.

With the first hook attached, it was time to determine where the second would need to be placed so that the chart hung evenly.  I put one side of the tablet onto the already mounted hook, and then the other on to the second, with the clear strip still in place.  The adhesive on Command Hooks is STRONG, so you're not able to reposition them easily once they make contact.  Sure, you can pull the release tab and try again, but then you've wasted an extra adhesive strip when it wasn't necessary.

(The cart still needs some spray paint to cover up the scribbles that someone else added in order to label the cart.  Sigh.)


Now the cart is perfect for mobile display and storage, and can also be an activity divider between learning centers.

~Spray paint, spray paint, spray paint.~


What kinds of modifications do you make to equipment in order to make it more functional for your classroom?  What items have you repurposed to create learning materials for your students?


  1. Another winner! I’ll need to trade in some of my extra hooks for these! Trip to Home Depot coming up!

  2. Nicely done! Materials on wheels is very practical. I give workshops in different corners of the city of Ottawa and also in a museum and I always travel with my little cart on which I place all ma boxes for the workshops!


As always, thank you for your comments, tips, suggestions and questions!