If you haven’t started already, it’s time to look at what needs to be completed before the beginning of the new school year, what’s working, what’s not working, revamping the schedule and curriculum, and organizing the house to make the school year a smooth one. Now’s the time to shop during the sales when all of the dorm and locker organization supplies are out in full force!
Organizing the homeschool usually means organizing books and curriculum, as well as a family schedule that includes school and everyone’s activities. This article addresses organizing space and materials with some suggested resources to help you get there. For ideas in organizing your homeschool day and family schedule, read the article Organizing Your Homeschool Schedule.
Homeschoolers have lots of books. To organize all of these different kinds of books, separating them and placing each kind in its own “home” is the way to defeat confusion and clutter.
Books for mom the teacher and books for everyone’s reference can go on their own shelves. (If you are tight for space, but have extra room in a closet, an inexpensive plastic shelf from Home Depot or Lowe’s works great.) These books are not used as often and are not pulled out every day, or only mom needs to pull out certain ones.
Workbooks, notebooks, and books used by the kids every day should have their own special home. A crate for each child put into a corner of the room, closet floor, or bottom book shelf works well for kids to place their daily activities. Color coding for each child is a terrific idea, and each child will enjoy picking out his favorite color.
If you do not want to use a crate, a specially designated shelf would work as well. Skinny workbooks sit better on a shelf in a plastic magazine holder, the bottom half of a narrow box, or in a cereal box with the top third cut off.
For odds and ends used in science experiments, math manipulatives, and other smaller items, wash bins from a dollar store placed on a shelf in a closet keeps track of these items and provides easy clean up and storage.
Paperbacks that always seem to get lost on the shelf are easy to find when you use a rectangular plastic box or shoe box. Place the books in single file with fronts facing out in the box on a shelf and flipping through the books (like you would with files) makes your book easy to find and children do not have to any off the shelf causing the whole row to slide down. It saves space on your bookshelves too, providing more room for even more of those books!
Besides Home Depot and Lowe’s for shelving and closet organization systems, Bed, Bath, and Beyond, Office Depot, Staples, and Office Max have many different storage and organizing materials. The various dollar stores offer creative solutions on a budget. For ideas and innovative solutions try The Container Store.
If any of you have any organizing space ideas, please share them with us!