Wednesday, October 10, 2012

organizing paperwork...

I posed a question on facebook last week asking my friends with kids what they do to control the MASS amounts of paper and art projects that their children bring home from school (and from homeschooling, and just drawings in general). A big consensus was to get rid of the "everyday" papers and only save things that are really special. Lots of my friends and I agree on taking photos of the art work and making a photo book with images of the artwork. I love all the ideas that were posted. 

My friend Jen shared a great link to an app that allows you to photograph, store and organize those art projects and also allows you to make a book right from you phone with the artwork images! It's called Artkive Mobile App and you can read about it here.

I have a storage system in place...but was just wondering what my friends keep and what they throw away. I want to share a few of their answers here with you in case you're wondering what to do with all the paperwork that comes home too...

Tami wrote: Ok..so here's the homeschool mom with 7 children's advice...

...art projects and pictures and maybe when they start writing...a few papers...let's be honest..how many of us sit do
wn and look at our grade school worksheets? If you do please tell me how in the world you have time to do that! Lol....I don't even look at stuff from high school or college! :/ 

I also agree with the taking pictures of special things and keeping it in a binder or scrapbook...it just gets too much and then we end up keeping more 'things' here on earth...

Becky has a great idea:  Take a handful of manilla envelopes - address each one with a different grandparent, uncle, aunt, etc... Then they get to send their artwork to family instead! The boys loved sending the envelopes once they were full.

So, the system I use comes from an INCREDIBLE blog called I heart organizing...with a blog name like that it has to be full of great organizing solutions to lots of problems...and it is!

She has a great post on organizing the school paperwork and I followed her advice to a T! Just have to go get a few more storage boxes for the other kids! But I didn't want to start with all four in case this is not the route I decided to fully go.


I used the printables that Jen provided on her blog! They're great!!

Naomi's pre-school teacher kept a binder with page protectors for them so it is filled with a few things she made throughout the year. Many of the items I did not see until she brought the binder home at the end of the year. I didn't save anything else from pre-school except the certificate and class photo.


 In kindergarten Naomi has LOTS of papers. She did some art projects for some letters of the alphabet but not all of them. So I've saved the ones she has and plan on having her make the other letters at home sometime and making an alphabet photo book for her with her artwork. So far I only saved a few of her everyday papers...one from history class, one from math, one with her writing her name and the like. I'm sure at the end of the year when I go through her folder again I'll throw more things out. And I'll probably throw the letter artwork out too after I photograph it and put it in a book.

 Before the paperwork got to the big file bin it was on my counter making it cluttered and looking HORRIBLE! I'm not great at keeping things organized on a daily basis but I try. I don't have my dads genes in that area! I saw a GREAT blog post on keeping the mail organized and under control so I decided to make my own...now I just need to use it regularly!!
 I can put the kids school work in here for the time being and go through and "weed" out at the end of the week...or let's get serious, the end of the month! Knowing that everything has a place and putting everything in it's place is SO good for my mommy brain! I just have to remember to DO it!!
How do YOU organize the paperwork that comes into your home?

1 comment:

Kari said...

Over the last three years I have been periodically purging the massive amount of papers my mom saved of my stuff. First went the worksheets and tests...seriously?! :) Then I went through and got rid of my papers etc that weren't memorable. I have saved a collected few that I remember working and being quite proud of them--they also were graded well then. :)

For this move, I've taken out all of my artwork, that mom had put in manilla folders labeled with the year/school year, and I'm going to scan the decent pieces and then chuck them all afterwards. They are fading and glue is coming undone. And I just can't justify moving it all over creation.

But I will say, I love that mom saved my stuff. It is totally my call as to what I want to keep now and I love looking at it again, and then I don't mind seeing it in the trash can.

Love the "I Heart Organzing" blog and all of her systems. I read it regularly.

Good job!