SC Johnson Family Economics Blog
Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Four Tips for Organizing Your Child's Artwork | Family Economics

By Tanna Clark

One of the most common requests from moms who want to get organized is, “What do I do with all of my child’s artwork?” It is a common problem we all have to deal with. The more kids you have the more stuff they bring home! Don’t feel guilty for not hanging on to it all. Allow yourself to let it go by using these simple ideas.

Creatively keep a writing sample. If you want to track how your child’s handwriting changes over the years create a fun little survey. Have your child write out their name and a favorite memory from the year. Add things like their favorite color or best friend’s name. This is a creative way to take a writing sample and remember the little details at the same time. You can let go of the school papers that you were holding onto just to remember what their handwriting looked like.

Keep the best and throw out the rest. If you are having a hard time deciphering which pieces of art to keep and which to let go, look for the original pieces of art. I personally love those finger paintings and hand prints. Reconsider keeping those precut glued together types of art. Your children didn’t create the whole piece they simply followed directions and glued things together. Keep the items they were able to create on their own.

Take a picture or scan the art. Instead of keeping all of the physical pieces of paper try taking a photo of your favorites. Enlist the help of your child and lay out all of their art from the year. Let them go through and choose five of their favorites, or a number they feel comfortable with. Let them know you will take a picture of the artwork and then you will throw the actual paper out. Before doing so, show them what the art looks like on the computer to ease their worries. Most times they will find it “pretty cool” to see their art in a digital format and be willing to part with the work.

Create a memory book or site. Now that you have thought about what pieces of art you may want to keep, you still have to decide how to store them in a way your children can enjoy them. There are websites available today that will let you turn your photos into scrapbooks. You can take the photos you made of your child’s art and create a book they can enjoy for years to cook. If you want to share the art with the whole family, try creating a blog!

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