How do I organize all of the materials?
Organization is crucial. In fact, the more time that you put into organizing the materials, so they are easily found and easily used, will pay off in the long run. Pretty is nice, but if you don't have time to do "pretty" right now, get started on the easy to find and use aspect. Here are some ideas. You can also find more ideas on my wiki.
Making stations easy to use
I store my stations in plastic containers with easy-to use lids. I also put a label on the box, so it is easy to find. All of the materials and a set of directions are kept in the box. If more than one activity is included in the box, I keep each activity in its own ziplock gallon bag. At the beginning of th year, we practice putting the materials away correctly, and we revisit this as needed throughout the year.
Storing stations when they are not in use
I have medium-sized plastic containers that are labeled by domain (e.g. addition and subtraction). All of the activities are kept in the corresponding bin when they are not in use. I use ziplock gallon bags for each activity and, when possible, I also keep the materials in the bag. I label the bags with the name of the activity, the domain name, and the standards that the activity addresses.