I love when people post organization ideas and what works for them. The following post and pictures are what is working great for me and the 6 kids I am homeschooling.
This is our school room. The picture is too dark, but it doubles as our dining room. I dream of the day that I can have an actual school room.
Each child has their own notebook. The notebooks have six slots in them. I use one slot for a schedule and the others for each day of the week.
Each child decorated their folder at the beginning of the year. Each Sunday, I insert worksheets that they kids are able to do on their own, or worksheets that I don’t want to have to find later, in the appropriate day of the week.
I tear out pages and insert in the correct day. It saves SO much time. I schedule everything out (using homeschooltrackeronline.com), print out the schedules, and go through textbooks a week in advance to have everything ready each day. There are no missing books, or missing sheets, or forgotten work since it is all in the notebooks, on the specific day, every time.
The kids know which worksheets they can grab and do on their own, and I know that anything that needs to get done is there. If we happen to not get to something, I can just move the work to the next day and make note on my schedule if needed.
All of this may not be necessary for everyone, but attempting to homeschool 6 kids and keep everyone on track could be an organizational nightmare. This structure has been my favorite change for the year.
So what happens when they finish the work?
Each child has their own color file folder. (I do not try to keep and organize my preschoolers work). These cheap file tubs are perfect for keeping everything together. Once the year is over, I can take out bits and pieces of work over the year for a portfolio and evaluation, or I can just bring the whole tub with me and let the evaluation teacher see what she wants. I will mark them with the year, and store in the attic for a couple of years.
Each file is a separate subject. This can serve as my portfolio down the road if necessary, or like I said above, I can just keep random examples from throughout the year. It is easier for me to just file everything away, in order, by subject, and keep the whole bin. After a couple years (which is how long the state of Florida requires you to keep work) I will most likely go through and create a portfolio, or have the kids help me make a fun binder, to keep for memories.
My friend had the brilliant idea of giving my oldest daughter her own space. This is my kitchen, but we carved out a corner for her. The desk is from Ikea and can fold down. She has slowly taken more and more space over. :-)
There is a significant gap between her and the younger kids, so this has worked out nicely.
Another favorite buy for this year were the organization wall hangers from Ikea. In this picture the backpacks are hanging from them. Ikea has cups (you can see them in a couple of the other pictures) that we use for pencils, pens etc., or you can buy hooks.
There were a few other ideas that have worked well for us, but perhaps I will share in another post. I need to give a shout out to my dear friend who is much smarter and more creative than I am and who I regularly steal ideas from. I forget which of these ideas were mine, and which were hers, so I will just say we work well together.