13 answers

Spring Cleaning; Weeding Through Child's School/art Work

Our house is small and already overflowing with kid stuff. I have been going through and trying to get rid of outgrown toys and clothes but still have papers EVERYWHERE. I have a kindergartener and preschooler with tons of cute projects. How have you selected what artwork/school work to save for keepsakes and what to pitch in the recycling can? I currently have a file for each child and a large box. How do you store and organize your child's keepsakes? I would love some organizational ideas!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Much like everyone else here - I keep some, send some to grandparents and other relatives, and toss the really bad ones. :) Good luck!

More Answers

I take pictures of the artwork with my digital camera before tossing them. Still need to burn them on a CD, but they are saved on my computer now.

1 mom found this helpful

Do you have a digital camera?? I read a nice article in Parenting about taking pictures of the kids' artwork to put on your screensaver (slideshow). I liked this idea, because even if you don't have room for the actual artwork, you can capture an image of it to keep. It might take a few tries to find the right light/setting to photograph drawings, or whatever artworks they've made, but I think it'd be worth it. (I'm going to try it, but my son is only 22 months, so we just have a very few drawings so far, my screensaver slideshow is full of pictures of him so far!)

At the beginning of each year I buy a 3 ring binder and a box of those clear page holders. When treasures and awards come home from school I just put them in the binder. That way everything is in order and I can see the progress made as the school year progresses. I tend to only keep the best examples of things, the best pictures, writing etc. If I end up with several things that are similar I just pick my favorite and pitch the rest. At the end of the year I have a basic scrapbook with all the projects put away.

I have two children (1st & 5th) and I have started manila envelopes for them. We put all of their school papers in there for the whole school year. At the end of the year we go thru them together and they can choose which ones to keep for their scrapbook, which ones to send to grandparents and which ones to toss. If they do big art projects that won't fit I take digital photos of them and print out a picture of it for them. This has helped to eliminate some of the clutter and it gives the kids a feeling of acomplishment when you save all of their papers for the school year and then have them look thru them. They can see how far they have come in a year.
Good luck.


How about picking up some inexpensive picture frames, and framing 2 or 3 pieces per child to hang up in their rooms or somewhere around the house? You can also send some to grandparents. My kids aren't doing a lot of art yet - they are all 2 & under - unless you count the beautiful orange sharpie on the hallway walls & doors my 2 y.o. did yesterday! But once they start bringing home artwork, I think I'll do some framing and giving away.

Congrats on seeing the need to weed! My mom saved everything and I mean everything! I had about 10 boxes of school paperwork to go through myself as an adult. This was not only artwork, but spelling tests! Seriously!?! My family members are packrats though. I have been in recovery for about 10 years and I am making progress, but it has not been easy and I am still actively purging stuff. I even went back this fall to begin helping mom & dad purge some of there stuff. Magazines that were 25 years old and bug-eaten. UGH! I told her, don't you dare both die and make me go through all of your boxes of garbage! I think that motivated them.

My husband does take pics of the kids art work and also scans stuff in aswell. I take the "most" important stuff and put it in those large zipploc bags will hold a 8x10 papers and I put them in there per each kid. This is my 3rd year doing it so they are compressed air tight. It is overwhelming the amount of stuff they bring home. During the year though I just keep a plastic container in a cupboard and toss the "omg that is amazing" things in there. Ha ha ha ha. Good luck!!!

Much like everyone else here - I keep some, send some to grandparents and other relatives, and toss the really bad ones. :) Good luck!

I would keep special ones for scrapbooking and keepsakes. The rest of them I would take to a retirement home and hand out the elders. They love it when they can have something colorful to hang in their room.

We ran into the same problem. I tried scanning a lot of the documents but that was really cumbersome, so I have been trying to take digital pics of the important ones and save them on the computer. I figure one day they can have a slide show without me having my storage taken up for the next 30 years.

Hi! I have a 3 year old with tons of art projects from 2 years of nursery school. I really wanted to save his work, so I bought a 12x12 leather scrapbook from Costco. I trim the larger ones so they will fit. I made a little front page from scrapbook paper identifying whose work it is and the years. I put some little quotes about kids and art on it too. It is cute on the coffee table, and he is so proud of showing it off and looking at it. I have also heard of people scanning their kids pictures into the computer to save as digital images, then getting rid of all of the paper. You can use them as a slideshow for your screensaver. My son loves loves to look at pictures on the computer as well. Hope these ideas are helpful! I love to organize and cut clutter.

I have 3 kids in school this year - so I'm going to make a binder....1 for the year & put the kids's stuff in there. :-)

i have an almost 3 year old in daycare and he brings home atleast 2 new paintings a week. i have found what works for me is to save them based on the feeling they gave me when i first saw them. if it was another "oh how cute", then i was okay to let go. if it was a "wow, that's nice", or a "oh my god, how sweet" (like the painting he made me for mothers day) then I'd keep it. I also picked up a large cardboard box with a lid and i keep all of his art in there at the top of the closet, and from time to time i go through the box and switch out pics to tack up on his bedroom wall. that's how i decorate his room. obviously you will need more than one big box, but its a great way to keep that stuff organized. and you could let each kid decorate there own box, that would be a fun project to hold the fun projects. good luck.

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