Organizing Your Children’s Year End School Papers

 Since it’s that time of year with school ending and children arriving home with an overflowing backpack (and more) of ‘treasures’ from their desk…I thought I would share how I store and save my children’s school papers from year to year.

I came up with this system about 6 years ago. My daughter had just finished Grade 3 and my son was still in pre-school. All of my daughter’s school papers were stored, messily, in an under the bed box. I thought that method was keeping me “organized”. As she was finishing her fourth year of school and I was shoving papers into this overflowing box, I thought that there had to be a better way. Piling stuff into boxes only works for so long. Then it becomes chaos in a box.

I started by creating a file folder for each grade. I used my handy dandy P-touch labeller to label each folder with name, grade and year. Then I organized each folder with papers from each grade. I try to keep these things: report card, special award certificates, leftover school pictures, a few samples of art work and a few samples of handwriting or story writing. I try to the keep the file folder to no more than about 20 pieces of paper at most. If I come across artwork that I know I want to frame, I put it in a special pile for framing later on. {To see the art gallery wall of my children’s artwork, click here.}Here are the file folders for each child for the year that just finished:


The file folders are kept in an easily accessible white wooden file box on my desk. I easily pop things into the folders as they come into the house. This system works great and I am really pleased with myself for keeping “with the program”. That is the ultimate ‘lithmus test’ of an organizational project… if you keep up with it!

When the school year is over and nothing more will be added to the files, I move the file folders to each child’s special “keepsake box”. The boxes are simple, inexpensive plastic totes from the local office supply store. The boxes are letter-sized and cost $11.99 each….which makes them both economical and durable. I keep each school year’s folder in the box with other folders from previous years. Each box looks like this:

I am aiming to make sure that each child will have only 1 full tote at the end of Grade 12. That’s the goal! What they want to do with their ‘keepsake box’ when they leave home is up to them. I hope they will appreciate that Mom has taken the time to save some mementos of their school years. And if you are a scrapbooker, well, hot diggity dog, these file folders make scrapbooking a child’s school years a breeze. Everything you need to create a layout/layouts can be found in the file folders.


Hopefully, when they move from home, the will only need to rent a trailer for their scrapbooks!

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  1. says

    I'm visiting from Somewhat Simple. I read Leanne's blog too. I'd love it if you'd stop by and link up to my Home and Family Friday Linky Party. I host each Friday. Hope you'll come join us!


  2. says

    That's so much more organized than I was – I just put them all in a 'memory box' – which the kids finally decided was the garbage since they had never seen it. So we dragged out the memory box and showed them, but I will have to go through one day and sort it. We did put a name and date on everything.

  3. says

    Great organization method! My daughter just started kindergarten and I've been trying to figure out my plan of attack on all the papers that will come flowing in!

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