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I asked this regarding using Ambleside, but didn't get many responses (only one actually) so I will ask it regarding any program you happen to be using. I just want to get better organized and could use some tips regarding this.


Thank you!



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Hi Luanne,


Do you mean organizing papers done by children etc? If so, what I am doing is giving each child a binder tabbed into different sections so that they can store their work in the correct place. The sections are for copywork, dictation, narrations (either written or picture), LLATL or PLL work (depending on child), art and science. Their history work either goes in a big project book or a separate notebook section. My 7th grader has a separate binder for Apologia General which is tabbed into sections relevant to the sections of the text.


What I'm planning to do is eventually make up binders with all work in one subject area, for eg: Emily's writing K-3, Jess art 4-6 etc, but only give them one binder (or two for 7th grade) to work with on a day-to-day basis because it is easier.

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Not sure what you're asking. I read your previous post, too, and had the same question. Sorry I didn't take the time then to ask what you needed!


Are you asking "How do I organize the kids' schoolwork which they do day to day?"


Are you asking, "How do you organize yourself so you know what to teach when and stay on track?"


Are you asking "how do you organize the schoolroom (or, in my case, the bookshelves and kitchen table:D)"?


Are you asking, "How do you organize your day to get everything done (and not burn-out?)"


Are you asking "How do you organize a scope and sequence over the years to come so the kids are ready for_______"


I hope this doesn't come across in the wrong way. It's just that "organization" is a huge topic! What specifically do you want to know?

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Well I'm not sure how Ambleside works, but with VP, which is also very literature-driven, I keep all the books we're using for that year or semester together, in one special section of shelves. I put them in order of use and put the VP card number (or in your case maybe the ambleside week #?) on a post-it note so I know when to pull the books. I have a chart showing what references and projects I plan for each week, so that even if we get off-schedule, I know where in the master plan for it we are. So when we start a new card or week of material, I go pull everything from the bookshelf labeled with that number. I introduce the topic to her, discuss, do the worksheet, and hand her the pile.


I'm not sure how much of that applies to you, except to say that having an overall plan typed up and getting the books pulled ahead of time and in order makes it easy for me to go to the next topic at a moment's notice.


For everyday, do the next thing type workbooks and whatnot, I keep them in vertical metal dividers on our work table. The dividers are from the office supply and rather pricy but have been a good investment. History for us is the last thing we do. In our planner I write out our plans for each subject, but for history, which I write in the very LAST column, lol, I just put something general, knowing my books are already labeled to pull and my master plan chart can fill in any other details about projects I had planned, etc.

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Hi, I saw your Ambleside question - and actually appreciated it and the response you got because I was never sure how I wanted to organize papers when I was using AO. (I still refer to AO, but haven't followed as closely this year.) I thought the response to your previous question made a lot of sense. I never knew whether I would rather have a "narrations" tab or a history tab, science tab, Other Literature tab, etc. And what about copywork? - a copywork tab? or put history copywork with history, etc.? I don't know why these seem like hard decisions to me, LOL.


So, you see, I am no help - but just wanted to say good luck! and let us know what you like! I have yet to figure out a system that I stick with for longer than one filing session. My other thought was to some day get a comb binder and make booklets of their work - but that still doesn't tell me how to organize it :)

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We have 1 binder per child w/tabs for each subject area. At the end of the term, I take everything out and at the end of the year I will bind it all up (somehow). Previously when we did AO I had to prepare portfolios for evaluation so took just the best examples and made a really nice presentation of those.


I just store the previous term's work in a folder until it's needed and I run a folder for things that I am printing/gathering for next term.


The Yr 7 Binder has tabs for Readings (the ones I am printing out for each week), Math, Geography, Memory, Spelling, Grammar, Writing/Dictation, Narrations, Science/Nature study, Latin, Bible and probably a couple more I can't remember, lol. Some of these only have sheets that she needs to refer to and rarely have new materials added. The front of her binder has her weekly checklist and a copy of the entire term's 12 week schedule for reference.


She does have a separate binder for 4H projects and she is working on two bound "Main Lesson Books", 1 for geography and 1 for her study of government and the Middle Ages. If needed, co-op classes have yet another binder for the 8-10 weeks they last.


My binder has all 3 term's (plus our extra term) schedules for each child, a copy of the weekly checklist for each child and a tab for each subject that each child has. I put the stuff for the following weeks in there plus any reference pages I need to teach. I have a folder for each outside activity we do 4H, swimming, co-op, etc with every sheet of paper we ever get for these things :eek: and so can just just pick it up and go when we run out the door...


not sure if this is what you meant but hth!


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We follow a Charlotte Mason type schedule. We try and do four 12-week (or three month) terms each year. I use a file cabinet system. For Christmas I received a Desk Apprentice from Staples. So now it is even easier as the Desk Apprentice is hollow in the center and designed to be used for hanging files. Now I don't have to run back and forth into my bedroom and the kids can file their own things! I have a large hanging file for each subject and individual folders as needed. I usually have a folder for each book we are reading that requires narrations, drawings, essays, or outlines, etc. I have a folder for each child in each subject to hold works in progress as well. At the end of a term we pull all folders for books we have completed and put them together. We used to put them into three ring binders - but my other Christmas gift was a comb-binder (yes I had to ask for these items and now my entire family thinks I am crazy!) so we will make little books with covers from now on. For some reason we really struggled with getting papers into binders on a daily basis. But, filing them into a folder that sits in the middle of the dining room table during school time seems to be easy enough for all of us to do. We are much more organized using a hanging file system. :)

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I was waiting for you to clarify before I posted.


As far as organizing completed work for the subjects we use binders for each subject so that we will have a nice book when we are finished.


So for science:


My oldest has a binder that is divided up into sections: weekly weather pages, birds, mammals, and botany right now. I put all her papers and observations there.


For Grammar and Composition:


She has a notebook that has tabs each part of speech, phonograms, spelling rules, her compositions and her completed works.


There is a binder for copywork as well and a larger binder has her worksheets from Latin, observations from our math labs and anything else we want to keep.



As far as papers that are waiting to be used:


I have a file system with worksheets seperated by language arts/phonics topics and math topics. We put these worksheets into their review books that they play with in their own time (they don't know that they are learning).


I have binders for copywork master pages, copywork pages to be used, Notebooking pages divided by language arts, science and other topics.


I have two binders of science topics/ideas/notebooking pages, 1 for math, 1 for drawing pages, 1 for art/handcraft ideas, 1 for seasonal poetry, 1 for grammar, 1 for composition, 1 for ideas to use with SWR, 1 for ideas arranged by grade (what we should/could do each year), and then I have sample binders of programs that I have looked at that I share with other homeschoolers.


My sample binders include 1 on just Latin programs, and 2 that have a mix of math, language arts, history and science.


I have my history books organized into 4 boxes according to period. I have a shelf on my bookshelf each for math, language arts, science, arts/handcrafts/music, and foreign language. I have another bookshelf that has all of the readers going from Bob books at the bottom to 4th grade readers on top. And then there is a bookshelf filled with picture books arranged by author.


Does that help any? I probably overloaded but I find that keeping everything organized and easy to access makes it so much easier to find things when you need them.:)

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