Lesson Plan - Get It!
Homeschooling can challenge the organizational skills of even the most organized parents! How can you keep different ages and abilities organized with academic work, field trips, extracurricular activities, and other appointments? If you’re looking for a few quick and simple methods for organizing your homeschooler’s work, then have a look at some of our favorites!
1. Let’s talk storage
We all know that before you can even think about organizing papers and books, you need to have your shelves and cubbies picked out. The best part is that you can have fun picking out different-colored baskets or inserts that all of your kids love! The colored cubes are perfect to store not only books, but also manipulatives, alphabet tiles, color cubes, lacing buttons, blocks and more — keeping the school workspace clutter-free.
And, if you would like to see some inspirational school work spaces that have shelving units set up in different ways, this Kitchen and Dining Room Homeschool Inspiration article from Hip Homeschool Moms shares some fantastic ideas!
2. Don’t forget about binders
Just as there is a wide variety of storage units for all of your homeschooling needs, there is also an endless variety of binders and folders, all of which have the potential for being used in their own neat little system.
The Grateful for Grace How to Use Binders (and Individualize Lesson Plans for BiblioPlan or Preprinted Plans) article has some great images of different ways you can color code your binders, as well as a few helpful hints for how to actually go about the process of placing sheets in the correct folder by week or month.
You don’t have to be an artist to come up with some creative ways to organize school work with binders. Some homeschool moms and dads like to keep all their finished worksheets in annual binders; that makes creating the end-of-year portfolios much easier. Others use folders to organize each child’s work by week or by subject, and these All-Purpose Teacher's Organizer bins from Lakeshore Learning Materials are an amazing way for your family to organize.
3. Take a load off
Now that you have decided on your shelves and binders, it’s time to create some multi-functional items to use in your homeschooling space. Try sitting down on a Storage Crate Seat (Sometimes Crafty) to think of all the work your homeschooler is going to complete in the next week and how exciting it will be to not have loose-leaf papers scattered all around the house. These crates can be used to hold books or binders for the week, and they are comfortable and cute to leave in your homeschool space.
4. Seat sacks are where it’s at
Ever wonder how the table can get so cluttered in a matter of minutes? It seems like every project needs additional papers, colored pencils, scissors, pens, glitter, erasers, etc. By the time the project is completed, the workplace has spun out of control!
Create some Seat Sacks for the Kids (Scissors & Spatulas). Possibly one of the cutest ideas for homeschoolers, this bag gives your child the chance to store all of his or her work in a tidy little bag that fits neatly on the back of your kitchen chair. If you’ve got sewing skills, this could be an easy weekend project. And, it can be a great opportunity for kids to help by choosing some fabrics and colors they want!
5. When in doubt, color code
Color-coding simplifies life, especially in multi-child families. All you need to do is assign each child a color (or have them pick their own color), then organize storage cubes, binders, organizers, file folders, and crates based on their colors. Lots of homeschool families use this system, and it really works wonders on keeping schoolwork organized and neat. It also gives each child a sense of responsibility for the schoolwork assigned to him or her each week.
Want to take color-coding to the next level? Use colored pens for adding entries or planning events in your weekly calendar. This will help you visualize the overlap of which child needs to be where and at what time.
Most of all, when trying to create a better system of organization, remember that every family is a little different, and organizing tips that help one family might not work for your kids. Be willing to try some of these teacher organization tips with the understanding that you may need to tweak them for your family.
If you discover a tip, technique, or tool that works for you, you can share it with other homeschool families!