Organization, Projects

Back to School: Homework Organization

August 13, 2015
Back to School: Homework Organization

Hey there!!  I’m absolutely thrilled for today’s post.  Erin from The Organized Life is here with some GREAT ideas for getting organized for the start of a new school year.  Her blog is all about helpful, practical ideas and I’m just thrilled that she agreed to pop on over and share a couple with you guys!  I love organization, but I’m not so good at it.  It’s an area that I definitely need some improvement in, and that’s why I’m so excited that Erin has agreed to be a monthly contributor to View From The Fridge.  She’s here to offer a little motivation and some great ideas for helping to get your household a bit more organized.  I love that she doesn’t claim to be perfect, and I love that her blog is full of simple, easy-to-implement, and helpful ideas!

I’ll let Erin take it away …

Back to School: Homework Organization

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Hello everyone! I’m Erin from The Organized Life: a little blog about organizing (I know, the title kinda gives it away), cleaning, and my attempts at DIY. I am so excited to be guest posting over here on View From The Fridge! I met Katie during the One Room Challenge this past spring, and Katie’s entryway was so incredible, I started following her everywhere… on social media, not like in the grocery store… that would be weird. I am so honored to have the opportunity to pop over and share some ideas for “Back to School” organization.

There is something extremely special about the first day of school, don’t you think? Each child is up with the sun; their first-day-of-school outfits ready to go. You make an elaborate breakfast; and by elaborate, I mean something other than cereal. Each child brushes their hair until every strand is in place, and if ever there was a day to floss, this would be the day. You take dozens hundreds of pictures: pictures of each child alone, with their siblings, and with friends. Then, the magic hour arrives; you hear the bus rounding the corner, and everyone jumps on board. Kids wave through the window, and you frantically blow kisses until the bus is out of sight. It’s coming; this highly anticipated first day of school.

The second day of school is a snap back to reality: the snooze button is pressed 12 times, kids are dragging themselves out of bed and down the stairs for a quick bowl of cold cereal. With five minutes until the bus arrives, child 1 is only half dressed, child 2 can’t find his toothbrush, and child 3 suddenly decides he no longer wants hot lunch and r-e-a-l-l-y needs you to pack him something. You’re rushing around yelling at everyone to hurry up, and somehow, miraculously, they make it on the bus. You close the door behind them, breathe a sigh of relief, and there, on the counter, is the lunch child 3 wanted, and the dog is chewing on child 2’s toothbrush. While I have no magic cure for reality, I do have some back-to-school ideas for organizing homework.

Back to School: Homework Organization

I am fairly confident each of my children brings home approximately 482 pieces of paper; multiply that by 3 and you get… A LOT of paperwork. Most are permission slips, announcements, and homework assignments, but then there are those gems: The picture your child drew in art class that was chosen for display, the 100% on a test your child studied hard for, the “About Me” posters, and creative writing books… these are the things I treasure and want to preserve.

Back to School: Homework Organization

Last year I created a quick homework station where I could put assignments and permission slips that needed attention, and I will continue to use it this year. However, I’m adding onto the system in order to address these treasured pieces of homework I value so much. I have always kept each child’s “keepsake homework” in a file box in their bedroom closet.

Back to School: Homework Organization

… but, here’s the problem: Child brings home a sentimental piece and I put it on the counter with every intention of bringing it up to their room and placing it in their file box. Two weeks later that “treasure” is still sitting there, now a little crinkled and splattered with a bit of PB & J. I don’t love clutter, so I put it in my inbox, and there it sits. Let’s be honest, I forget about it, and when I do see it, I’m just too lazy to bring it upstairs. It will literally take 5 months to get where it belongs. So, here’s the plan for this year: I found a wall organizer, and I’m going to put each child’s prized pieces in it from the first day of school to the last. I truly believe I can handle one run up the stairs at the end of the year. Fingers crossed.

Back to School: Homework Organization

Sometimes teachers get a little crazy and have my children create outside the confines of my 8 1/2 x 11 filing system. I know! Craziness. I want to keep these things, but I don’t have a storage closet big enough to house it all. So, I am creating yearbooks for my children using Shutterfly.

Back to School: Homework Organization

I made one for Monaya’s 4th grade year, and I love it! I used pictures from events that occurred throughout her school year: choir concerts, the Imagination Fair, Jump Rope for Heart, her birthday party, etc. Not only did I include events from the year, I also took pictures of her keepsakes that were too big to store, or pieces I felt were above-and-beyond. Those were included in her yearbook as well. Even though I can’t physically hold them, I have pictures to keep the memory alive.

Back to School: Homework Organization

I am so excited to create these yearbooks because my kids love looking through photo albums. (Yes, I actually do print off pictures and put them in albums. I may be the only one keeping Target’s photo lab in business.) Now, each child has a photo book dedicated to them, and they can look through the highlights of their year. Even though I pretend my children are going to stay in grade school forever, I know one day they will graduate high school and these yearbooks will be perfect to set out at their open house.

Thanks for letting me share some of my ideas with you, and a big thank you to Katie for letting me share on her blog today!

Happy Back-to-School!

You can follow Erin and her blog, The Organized Life here:

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  • Reply Karen August 13, 2015 at 5:41 am

    Erin, I love how organized you are, I too am a big fan of putting things where they belong :)
    And I love how you used that shutterfly picture book! I ordered one that I used for a birthday but your idea is brillian!

    • Reply Erin Meyer August 14, 2015 at 6:35 am

      Thanks Karen! I am super excited about the picture books, just wish I’d thought of it when my kiddos first started school. I’m going to play catch-up this fall and make one for the grades I’ve missed.
      Erin Meyer recently posted…Back to School: Homework OrganizationMy Profile

  • Reply Cathy August 13, 2015 at 10:36 am

    I can’t believe it’s almost time for school to start and you are so right – what an avalanche of paper we get each day. I love your ideas for corralling them and the book is ingenious. Cathy

    • Reply Erin Meyer August 14, 2015 at 6:37 am

      So. much. paperwork! I’m hoping the additional paperwork corralling ideas help keep it under control. Thanks for stopping over! Have a wonderful day!
      Erin Meyer recently posted…Back to School: Homework OrganizationMy Profile

    • Reply Katie August 14, 2015 at 7:31 am

      Erin’s ideas are so simple, but something I probably wouldn’t have thought to do … especially the yearbook idea! I’m hoping to tackle this preschool year with some organization right from the beginning! Thanks for stopping by! Have a great weekend!

  • Reply Sharon August 13, 2015 at 4:43 pm

    Such great ideas for taming the papers that come home! Our district has switched to an all email format, which is even more stressful than the paper system. Love the book idea for larger projects!
    Sharon recently posted…That’s Awesome! #9My Profile

    • Reply Katie August 14, 2015 at 7:30 am

      Aye … I could totally see why email would be good … and bad! My email inbox is in totally disarray right now. Maybe Erin needs to come back next month with some ideas on how to organize that!! Ha! Thanks for stopping by! Happy Friday!

    • Reply Erin Meyer August 14, 2015 at 8:39 am

      At least with paper, I’m kinda forced to look at the information. With emails… let’s be honest, they might sit there, unread, for quite some time, or I read it and totally forget about it.
      Erin Meyer recently posted…Back to School: Homework OrganizationMy Profile

  • Reply Sydney @ Tastefully Frugal August 13, 2015 at 5:24 pm

    These are all great ideas! My boys aren’t in school yet but they still create “works of art” that get misplaced or used as pot holders. I definitely need to implement an organizations system like this.
    Sydney @ Tastefully Frugal recently posted…Strawberry Banana Protein SmoothieMy Profile

    • Reply Katie August 14, 2015 at 7:29 am

      I’m with you, Sydney! The ‘art’ is so hard to organize, and I feel too guilty to throw it away … so in bags in our closet it sits. And I have a feeling it will stay there (and the bag collection will grow) unless I start implementing a system like Erin has! Great idea!!

    • Reply Erin Meyer August 14, 2015 at 8:46 am

      I actually have a “treasure box” for all the artwork and sentimental items each child had prior to starting school. Once school starts, I switch over to the files. It is so hard to choose what to hang onto and what to let go of though.
      Erin Meyer recently posted…Back to School: Homework OrganizationMy Profile

  • Reply Stephanie @ CasaWatkins August 13, 2015 at 5:29 pm

    Awesome tips! I especially loved the year book idea. I was thinking of one for the entire family, but I love the idea of one for just school.
    Stephanie @ CasaWatkins recently posted…18 Amazing Back to School IdeasMy Profile

    • Reply Katie August 14, 2015 at 7:27 am

      Hi Stephanie! I totally agree about the year book idea! What a great way to neatly keep a record of all those projects! With three boys that will start kindergarten in the near future, I am totally doing this! Thanks for stopping by! Happy Friday!

    • Reply Erin Meyer August 14, 2015 at 8:43 am

      We actually do a yearly “family highlights” photo book as well, but I like the idea that each child can have their own book to look at as well that just feature them. Have a wonderful weekend Stephanie!!!
      Erin Meyer recently posted…Back to School: Homework OrganizationMy Profile

  • Reply Back to School Organization Ideas August 25, 2015 at 9:00 am

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