At business courses Sydney we offer face to face training experience with dedicated and enthusiastic tutors. Were you born organized, or do you lead a helter– skelter existence? Are you tired of losing your keys and not finding the papers, books, etc. that you need? Are you living underneath a cloud of chaos? If you are a home school parent this can be doubly troublesome. It’s one thing to leave for work each day, being able to leave it all behind, it’s quite another when you have to live it 24/7. And home schooling in and of itself causes clutter and disorganization. What with papers, books, projects…
I believe it is critical to be somewhat organized when you are educating at home. Too much precious time will be lost if you’re not. Too many hours will be spent chasing your tail and nothing will be accomplished. You will feel overwhelmed and out of control. Given the chance your clutter will eat you alive (at least that’s the way it will make you feel)!
So what’s a person to do?
Get rid of the clutter!
You must realize that clutter cannot be organized. Start sorting through the confusion and give away or throw away those things that do not, “sing to your heart.” Do a little bit each day and you will soon see a light at the end of your tunnel.
Okay, what’s next? Being that you are a home schooling family you will have more belongings than your non– home schooling family down the street. The trick is in learning how to store what you do have and how not to have too much! This can be quite the challenge. There is so much neat stuff out there! So many books, art supplies, science kits, manipulatives, maps, and lots of fun supplemental learning tools. It is hard to resist it all. But you must. You really must. When there is too much available it becomes paralyzing and you don’t know what to do first. You’ll find yourself running in circles and not accomplishing anything. It is much better to have a few really good resources that you really want to use, rather than having a house full of things you may or may not get to.
But what to do with those “really good resources?” Some families are fortunate enough to have an extra room that can be devoted to their home learning. This is nice, but not necessary. Many families do just fine seated around the dining room table, although that makes storing the necessary materials a bit trickier.
Speaking of storage…let’s break it down and see what we can come up with.
Books first. How many books do you have? Are you trying to build an at home library? Do you visit the public library regularly? How about magazines, do you have lots or not that many?
A bookcase is a good idea. The number of books you have and how large you want to grow your library will determine the size and amount of the cases you will need. If you have magazines you can invest in some magazine holders and devote a shelf of your bookcase to them. This works well for catalogs too. I would suggest not letting either your catalog or your magazine collection grow too large. They can all too quickly overwhelm you. Replace old catalogs with new ones as soon as they arrive. And I would save no more than a year’s worth of a particular magazine. You can donate your old ones to your local library, thrift store, or Doctor’s office it you don’t want to throw them away.
It’s also a good idea to keep a shelf for those checked out library books. Make it a family rule that all library books will be stored there. When one is used another cannot be taken until the used one has been replaced. This will help you to keep track of those books and avoid fines! Another thing I do is to keep a post it note by the computer to remind me when my books are due. Some people make sure they go to the library on the same day each week so they will not loose track of their due dates.
Okay, how about art supplies, science kits, and manipulatives? Plastic containers are good for these. Sort everything out and store in an appropriately sized labeled container. If you have a spare closet you can buy freestanding plastic shelves to fit inside. Then just fill up the shelves with your labeled containers. If this doesn’t work you can purchase those plastic rolling carts with drawers. They come in various sizes. You can sort your materials into the drawers that you have already labeled. These can be stored up against a free wall.
Now, how about the things you use every day?
Ideally each child will have a desk with drawers. Next best is a table with a freestanding, plastic set of drawers near by. If neither of these is feasible give each child his or her own plastic crate. Books, notebooks, and a fully packed pencil case can be stored in these, then carried to where needed and easily stored away when finished for the day.
All right, what’s next? Record keeping!
You’ll need to find a place to keep all of those important papers. But first, you’ll want to decide what those important papers are? What are you going to keep? Possibly lesson plans, attendance records, work samples, report cards, standardized test scores, and high school transcripts.
A filing cabinet is a great place for these; a two drawer one will probably do the trick. If that is not possible, how about an accordion file folder? Or maybe a large three ring binder with dividers. It all depends on how much space you have and how much money you want to spend.
Well, I think that about covers it. Organization is important for home schoolers. Clutter must be gotten rid of because too much of anything is NOT a good thing. Plus it’s important to find what works for your life when deciding what to keep, what not to keep, and where and how to keep it. Follow this advice and your days will glide by with new ease.
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