Have the books, craft supplies, science kits and flashcards taken over your house? Homeschooling comes with baggage. If you’ve been homeschooling for any length of time, you know it’s almost impossible not to collect lots of ‘stuff’. Let me share 7 tips to help you manage the homeschool clutter chaos.
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Between housework, homeschooling, and kids it’s very easy for the ‘stuff’ to pile, and for those piles to go on forever. Reality is, that most homes don’t look Pinterest perfect, and that’s just real life. When you add homeschooling to an already hectic day, our homes often look more like disaster zones.
After months of frustration, I learned that maintenance is key. I really don’t have a few hours, much less a few days to spare and dedicate to just de-cluttering, so I’ve made getting organized a top priority. Here are some of the items we use to keep the clutter to a minimum, and avoid panic attacks when surprise guests come over.
1. It’s All About Containment
Use plastic bins and baskets to contain the chaos. Both come in all sizes and shapes, with and without lids. We found some semi-clear containers with compartments we use these to store small craft supplies and writing utensils. We also use larger containers to store flashcards, science and art supplies. We have a large basket to hold picture books to entertain the baby visitors.
2. Not Just for Magazines
I use these magazine holders to store curriculum, completed work and anything that needs to be filed or put away. What I love about these is that they are very inexpensive, and they make everything look nice and neat.
3. Cubbies In All Shapes And Sizes
We use large square bins to store fabric, yarn and other sewing supplies, a rolling cart where my daughter can separate her Legos by color, and paper sorters to separate work by subject on a day-to-day basis and of course to sort paper.
4. If They Can See Them, They Will Read Them
Or at least that’s what I tell myself.
Have you seen the ‘three books short of an appearance on hoarders’ meme?
That pretty much sums it up for homeschool moms. We like to collect books and curriculum and our bookshelves can get out of control. You can check out my post on how we organized our homeschool space to see how we manage the book chaos.
5. Color Coding Is A Homeschool Mom’s Best Friend
If you have more that one child, organizing schoolwork and assignments can be tricky. Color coding is something we’ve done from the beginning, and it has helped a great deal. To get more inspiration check our Kristy Clover’s video on organizing curriculum, or read her blog post here. She also has tips on getting an entire year’s lessons ready on simple filing folder.
6. Use Your Walls
If you’re short on desk or drawer space, use the wall! These inexpensive wall pockets can hold a lot, and keep your space organized. One of the many creative things you’ll see when looking up homeschool organization is behind the door shoe organizers. You can store small craft supplies, glue, erasers, etc. We use IKEA wall pockets to store our morning meeting flashcards and books.
7. After You’ve Controlled The Chaos
Talk to your kids and give them a tour of the space; and as my daughter says, give them a ‘tutorial’ on how each component should be used. If you explain how things work and where they go right from the beginning there’s less of a chance for them to leave things lying around simply because they don’t know where things go. Well, there’s a tiny bit of a chance, but we’ll take it.
Getting your space organized before you begin the year will save you time and make everything more efficient. I encourage you to get organized now; it’s one less thing you will have to worry about later on.
For more tips to help you get organized and ready to take on the new school year check out our 10 Day series by clicking on the image below.
If you’re looking for even more motivation to get it together in small weekly steps, check out Melanie Wilson’s guide to organizing your homeschool life.
What are you favorite organizing tools?