Friday, August 12, 2011

Back to School- Organizational Plan

Here is what I like to do:
1.  Come up with a great organizational plan.
2.  Buy supplies to execute that plan.
3.  Get the plan 85% put together. 
4. Execute the plan for approximately 3 weeks.
5.  Fall off the wagon and tackle a new project somewhere else instead.

I discovered a few years ago after taking some diagnostic career-associated tests and questionnaires, that this tendency makes me a “big picture” person and not a “detail oriented person”.  Good thing I married a detail guy!  Anyway, apparently this breaks down in the following way.  Big picture people get really excited and pumped by a new idea and seeing it all come together in their mind.  And basically, just the rush from the idea is enough.  The details sort of weigh us down and burst the creative bubble.  So, sometimes we don’t really get around to doing the big idea, and because the idea itself is the exciting part, we’re okay with that.
In my case, this means I often have several projects going at once, and few get completely finished off.  In my two weeks off, I am attempting to get some things completed.  BUT, true to form, before I do that, I wanted to get just one last project started.

This is my “Back to School” project.  With two kids in school now, I need to get my act in gear, especially since I will have a full load of classes as well.  We are lucky enough to have a mudroom.  I put this room to work.  I painted the door in the chalkboard paint a few months ago.  What I wanted to prevent is me forgetting to fill out a form, or getting annoyed with the kids just laying everything out on my desk and then asking me if I read it every 3.5 seconds.

I bought a wall file folder for each child and one for myself.  All papers that I need to see are to be put in my Inbox by my desk in the kitchen.  Then, when I am finished looking at them, or filling them out, anything that needs to go back to school goes into their inbox.  These file holders or in-boxes are right next to the door, so they can see them as they walk out to the bus.  They know to check their boxes before they leave for school and put any papers back in their folders for school.  So far, this new plan has worked like a charm!  It has been absolutely flawless for one day! :)

I let the kids pick out decorative paper at Michael's to spruce up their boxes. I laminated the paper to keep it from ripping or fraying. FYI-these same clear file folders were almost $11 at Office Maxx and only $2.99 at Target!

My goal this year is to say "YES" more often. In this case I said "yes" to 100% finished.  I almost skipped laminating the papers since it was "pretty much done".  But I hauled my butt back out and finished it up.  Wha-who!  Little victories people, little victories.
I did let them pick out their own paper, but I asked them to stay in the same color scheme.  It worked!
The teacher in me has to have "procedures" for transition times.  This is what we came up with for our after school procedures.  I love the chalkboard door for this type of stuff!  

Plastic wall file folders hold papers or anything that should be placed in the backpack for the following day.
They each also have their own hooks for coats later on that are hung at their height.

This is my "Inbox" to hold papers from the kids.  After I fill out the forms, I place them in their boxes to be loaded into their backpacks.

1 comment:

no way said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE!!! I might need to steal this from you. PS-I am a big picture person married to a detail guy as well. I am learning so much from Dan's way of's pretty interesting, really.