The last day of school will be here soon bringing with it tons of papers, projects and left over school supplies. Quickest strategy? Stuff all of the "stuff" into a closet to be forgotten about until fall. Or you can tackle it now. Whatever you decide, here are some organizational tips to help you muddle through the stacks.
When and How to Sort
There are 2 schools of thought: Option A – do it right away and by yourself. Some of us moms can’t help but tackle the task at hand as soon as the backpacks hit the door. If this is you, follow the tips below to help guide you.
Option B – do it in late July with your kids. Help ease the kids back into the school mode. You can assess what school supplies they can use again next year, review the progress they made from the year before. This is a fun way to spend a really hot afternoon or a rainy day. Plus it's a great opportunity to teach children to make decisions on what they should and should not keep. Some kids want to keep everything, so hopefully the guidelines below will be helpful. Maybe a treat for ice cream cones after the project is done!
Decide What to Keep
1-2 favorite art work pieces
1- 2 achievement tests
5-10 pieces of written work (journals-interesting writings)
Memorable notes from teachers or friends
Final Report Card
Date Everything (Name, Date, Age and Year in School)
Decide What Not to Keep
Classroom specific information
Just be selective!
How to Store Kids' Stuff
1 binder for each child (divider for each year in school)
1 accordian file for each child (divider for each year in school)
1 medium size box memories (if you use a box, you can include school memories, little mementos, etc. – just try to limit items to the size of the box)
Frame the art with inexpensive frames.
Take a photo of all the art work and turn into a collage.
Scan papers/artwork to make into a DVD slide show or upload photos onto Snapfish and make an album for that year.
Left Over School Supplies
I have noticed some of the supplies that come home at the end of the year are practically new! I rescue “like new” folders, notebooks, erasers, water colors etc. and put in the School Supply Area. If you don’t have a “School Supply Area” – you should! Keep your overstock of loose leaf paper, notebooks, markers and all the school supplies in one place. Plus you can stock up in August when they are on sale real cheap.
I have been able to recycle or re-use pencil boxes, rulers, etc. I usually test out the leftover markers to decide if they are worth saving. I put all the mix-matched markers, crayons, pencils, pens into containers to use on a daily basis.
Submitted by Springfield Moms contributor and professional organizer Amy Peterson who is mother of three and co-owner of The Closet Guy, Inc. with husband Brooke Peterson.
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