#cotlf #edtech #vitalcpd One of the challenges of a 1:1 learning environment is maintaining the equipment. If you have a netbook or laptop cart in your classroom, you have probably experienced the heartache of cart organization. Students seem to have little difficulty getting their computers, but putting them back is another matter! Cords become rearranged and dislodged, computers go back willy-nilly, and before you know it, the whole cart is in total disarray and computers are going uncharged! If you’ve been looking for a way to streamline this process, check out the tips below:

1. Select 2 students to be responsible for taking out and putting back the computers. You can make this a classroom job if you wish, but be sure to train your chosen students in how you want things done. Keep them on the job for at least a week to increase efficiency – they will become much faster at the task with some practice, and you won’t have to constantly retrain students.

2. Send students in small groups to the cart to get their computers from your new “Cart Masters” (or to return their computers). This will keep your helpers from becoming overwhelmed and will prevent lost work time for students just waiting around for their turn.

3. Label your cart as clearly as possible. Here’s an example that can be seen in Mary Barela’s class at Preston:

Notice that both the computers AND the cords are labeled with matching numbers to help students pair the proper cord and computer, thus preventing “missing” cords. The alternating colors allow you to easily see at a glance if any computers are missing or placed incorrectly.

If you have any additional ideas for maintaining computer carts or student routines for getting and returning computers, please share them in the comments!

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