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I’m going to give you three items that you can use once a day, once a week and once a month respectively to keep your homeschool organized. At most each thing will take one hour. So one hour per (school) day, an additional hour at the beginning of the week, and one hour a month will streamline your homeschool.
1. Post-it Notes
This is one of the easiest ways to streamline your homeschool day. If your kids can read, you can use post it notes. Lay out assignments that don’t need instruction and tag them with post it notes. This way your child can get started on their own.
What can you tag with post its? Handwriting assignments, math review pages, reading passages and more. Those are a few examples of what I use them for with my 1st grader. The older the student, the more you can “pre-assign” them. This gives you a little time to clean up from breakfast, situate little ones or whatever you need to do while your schoolers are already getting started. I also think it helps make children more independent and self-guided. I work on the post-it note assignments before I go to bed so they are there and ready after breakfast.
2. A Rolling Cart
If you’re like us, schooling can happen in the school room, at the kitchen table or on the porch. A good rolling cart will help keep your organized on the go. I like this one. It has enough drawers for every subject. Keep it stocked with books, assignments and supplies for the week and just roll it to the room you need it in. I know there are mixed feelings about workbooks, but ideally for the rolling cart you would tear all the pages out of workbooks so you can place just the needed pages in the cart each week. Some people don’t like disassembling work books. In which case you would want to post-it note the needed pages with the day they need to be done. One rolling cart per child would be ideal so you can keep each child’s assignments sorted. And would allow and older child to take his assignments to his room or a different area of the house and work independently. A little time on Sunday night to get everything in place and it makes our days smoother.
3. A File Box
Becoming a homeschool mom made me realize that it’s impossible to keep everything. Oh, the mess it would make! I just don’t have that kind of space. So as assignments and tests are done weekly I put them back in the file cart drawer (see #2) until the end of the week. When it’s time to refresh the rolling cart drawers at the end of the week the completed work goes in my “file box stack”. Once a month I take my file box and go through my stack and file only what needs to be kept and trash the rest. Right now I keep tests, notebooking assignments, and examples of language arts/handwriting (for example, since we’re in 1st grade – my son may have an assignment that has him brainstorming a couple sentences a day dinosaurs using certain words. The final assignment asks him to take his sentences and write a story. I would keep just the story and put it in the file box).
I hope these tips help you get your homeschool day in order and eliminate a little clutter. Still trying to get started on your homeschooling journey? These 7 Steps to Start Homeschooling might be helpful! Struggling with curriculum? Here’s a helpful suggestion on how to pick your curriculum.
Tabitha is a homeschooling mom of an only. If there is anything she loves as much as homeschooling, it’s saving money. She blogs about saving money, parenting, homeschooling, essential oils, cooking, gardening and more at Saving Toward a Better Life.
Follow along in my 31 Days to a Better Planned Homeschool series.