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3-Rings vs. Spirals: The Organizer Challenge

3-Rings vs. Spirals: The Organizer Challenge

By Katie_Rolnick

You have to be organized if you want to succeed in school. Neat and orderly class notes can be the difference between an A and, well, something considerably less pleasant than an A. And where you keep those tidy notes is almost as important as the information in them.

When it comes to notepaper receptacles, you basically have two options: loose leaf paper clasped into a 3-ring binder, or the classic spiral-bound notebook.

Before you commit to one or the other, take these factors into consideration:

Sick days
If you miss a day of class and need to borrow a friend's notes, you can easily photocopy them and set them in their proper chronological place in a 3-ring binder.
With a spiral notebook, you have to copy the notes by hand, and even then, Tuesday's notes will be forever out of place because you had already written in Wednesday's.

Durability
Your school supplies take quite a beating after moving from your bag, to your locker, to your bag, to home, to your bag...you get the idea. With its stiff outer covering, a 3-ring binder will stand up to the challenge, keeping the paper inside nice and rumple-free.
A spiral notebook, however, will begin to collapse at the edges midway through the semester. Before you know it, the cover is just barely hanging on and the paper inside is destroyed. You'll be in slightly better shape with one of those fancy notebooks with the plastic covers, which hold up slightly better over the long haul.

Doodle-ability
The cover of your spiral notebook provides a wonderful canvas for your creative renderings. With a little imagination and time, it makes a fantastic personal art easel.
Doodles done on a 3-ring binder are hard to see and tend to rub off by the end of the day. The best you can do to keep yourself occupied during boring lectures is to stab the cover with the tip of your pen.

Compactness
Spiral notebooks
are definitely space-savers and can be smooshed into a backpack that's already stuffed with lots of books and gear.
A 3-ring binder cannot be smooshed into a packed bag. (Though a set of 3-rings does look cool when stacked in an alternating fashion.)

Safety
A set of armor crafted out of 3-ring binders would provide decent protection against the pummeling of most bullies.
A set of armor crafted out of spiral notebooks would provide even more protection, because the flexible shape can conform tightly to your body, softening any blows.

Musicality
A spiral notebook allows for pitch-perfect pencil-drumming, great for annoying your neighbors in study hall.
Not only can you drum on a 3-ring binder, but you can add percussive variety by snapping the ring open and closed repeatedly.

Stickiness
A 3-ring binder provides the perfect surface for displaying your sticker collection, and the vinyl surface allows for easy removal when you want to change things up.
A spiral notebook is also a great place to show off those stickers. But once they're on a notebook, you can't get them off. So you better be sure you want a notebook plastered with Hello Kitty.

Weather
A 3-ring binder makes a fairly successful shield against the rain or snow.
If you use a spiral notebook to take cover during bad weather, you'll end up with soggy bits of paper in your hair.

So which do you prefer, a 3-ring binder or a spiral notebook? Or do you mix it up and use different organizers for different subjects?

Related Post: The World's Hippest Notebook

Topics: School
Tags: notebooks, vs., binders

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