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Monday, June 17, 2013

Organizing School Papers

Like I mentioned in THIS post, while the kids had their free day last Friday, I organized all their school papers.  I threw away most of it being sure to keep any awards, report cards, notes from teachers, written reports and drawings.  I love to keep the drawings (not necessarily all of them) and the stories they write because their personalities really come through.  When I pack away the current year's schoolwork, I weed through their previous years of schoolwork to see what else I can throw away.  It's easier to throw things away the older it is.  This also helps make sure everything will fit into the designated bins.

I got these bins at Walmart for about $5 and hope to be able to fit K-12th grade in there.  As you can see, I have some purging to do if I'm going to fit 10 more years of school work into Sweetie Pie's bin, but that's why I go through it all each year getting rid of a little bit more.  So far it's worked out pretty good.  I have plans to photograph the artwork, and just print out a collage of it for each year.  That way I won't have to store such thick, over sized or 3 dimensional stuff.

I have a hanging file folder for each year and within that I have one manila folder that has the report cards, teacher notes and special awards.  Everything else is pretty much writing and artwork.  I also have a "School Days" type memory album where the kids write in their best friends, favorites and class pictures.

Throughout the school year, I only save things that I think I'll put into these bins.  And even then I purge what I've saved before putting the papers into the bins.  I save the school work throughout the year in a kitchen cabinet where I keep extra pencils and stuff for the kids' homework.  Currently these school bins are stored in my bedroom.  I'd rather store them in the basement but it can get humid down there and I'm worried that the moisture will ruin the papers.

So here's my process for storing and organizing kid's school papers:

1.  Decide what you'll keep and throw away the rest.  Do this throughout the year.

2.  At the end of the school year.  Go through the saved pile and see what else you can purge.

3.  Store the paperwork in a sturdy container divided by year/grade.

4.  Go through it each year to get rid of more and more

5.  Only keep what will fit in the bin.  Take a picture if it's too big and keep the picture, not the original item.

Using this system, I'm able to keep only the things that have meaning and not get overwhelmed.

How do you store and organize your kid's school work?

Thanks for stopping by,