The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Sharon at Mom of 6.
Have you seen the Payless Back to School commercial yet? The one that ends with the Mom sinking into her chair and saying “You hear that? That’s the sound of September.”?
It cracks me up every time I see it….. especially because I’m in the middle of back-to-school preparations right now, and my house couldn’t be busier! I am working with my kids to clean out and de-clutter each of their bedrooms, to organize their closets, purchase things they need to start the school year. There’s so much that I would like to accomplish and the days are just flying by!
One of the projects that I did recently with my kids was to create two new homework caddies. One that is better suited for our younger kids whose homework still often requires coloring, cutting, and glue sticks, and one for the older kids whose homework may require them to highlight materials in a text, or to save a document on a flash drive. We created our caddies from utility buckets with built-in handles so that the caddies can easily be carried from room to room. There are times when I am working with one child at the kitchen table, and send another child to work at their desk in their bedroom or at the dining room table to minimize distractions. If they can just pick up and carry their supplies with them, it helps!
Here is what we put inside each of our homework caddies:
Homework Caddy for Elementary-School Students
I like to use plastic cups to corral items in the caddy- and it is fun to use ones that we picked up at amusement parks or other events over the summer, and fill them with sharpened pencils, erasers, crayons, colored pencils, markers, glue sticks, child friendly scissors, and rulers.
Homework Caddy for Middle-School Students
In this caddy we will have containers for sharpened #2 pencils, erasers, pens, highlighters, glue sticks, tape, a stapler, index cards, and flash drives.
In the cabinet where we keep these caddies will keep two 8 1/2 x 11 boxes- one for lined paper and one for blank paper that can be used for drawings or other assignments. I like that my kids have one area to go to where they can gather all of the supplies they need to complete their homework.
Are you feeling organized for back to school? I’d love to hear how it’s going for you (are you waiting for the “sound of September” too?)- so please leave a comment below!
If you get a chance, I hope you’ll stop by to see me at Momof6 – a place where I write about organizing your home, using a family calendar, creating household routines, hosting at-home birthday parties, and holding a DIY summer camp! You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter (@sharonmomof6), and Pinterest!
Yellow Bliss Road
A Bowl Full of Lemons
I absolutely LOVE office supplies. With all these back-to-school sales, I’m like a kid in the candy store, drinkin’ a latte. There’s just something exciting about fresh boxes of crayons and crisp notebooks and planners waiting to be filled… I’m weird. I know. I’m okay with that. Today I’m going to put all these supplies into an organized caddy so my kids are ready when it’s time for school.
Awhile ago, I organized our art and craft supplies. The set-up is in our kitchen, close to the table where homework is done. This creates easy access to needed supplies, like glue sticks and scissors, but some items, like crayons and markers, are in larger jars, so I thought I’d take a few out and put them in a caddy to control the creativity. Other supplies are not included in the art area at all, so instead of running a marathon through the house looking for things like, a protractor,… (Do we even have a protractor? We do. Somewhere. I know I saw it last year)… everything is together in one place.
My hope is for a reduction in the time spent searching for needed items, which in turn will reduce the time needed to complete assignments, which in turn will reduce the amount of whining about needing to do homework in the first place. Wishful thinking on the no whining. I know.
I started by coming up with a list of must-haves for homework assignments. Here’s my list, but yours may be different depending on the ages of your kiddos:
- Scratch paper- Remember all those half-used notebooks from last year? I tore out the unused paper and put it in a file folder
- Protractor… I found not only one, but two during my search…
- Big Erasers
I’m not quite sure what’s up with me and the repurposing of used veggie cans, but I’m at it again. For the writing/coloring utensils, I wrapped tin cans in scrapbook paper.
I looked high and low for something to hold all the other supplies, and finally found an organizer that worked perfectly; love when that happens. (I found mine at Target, but they don’t seem to sell them anymore, but here is one that is very similar on Amazon.) There are six small containers within a larger bin. I labeled each of the containers so we would know what went where.
I had some extra bins, and Stephanie, from Casa Watkins, used this same organizer to hold flashcards. I happened to have 3 empty bins and 3 sets of flashcards… perfect:
The other containers held miscellaneous items:
All my items went into the caddy, and now I have everything ready for the first homework assignments… well, everything except my kids; I don’t think they’re ever ready for homework.
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Filed Under: Back to School, DIY Projects, Organization