Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Organizing Schoolwork with Workboxes

It has been a while since I have written an organizational post but I think that I have now used workboxes long enough to write a post on using them to organize schoolwork. There are many ways to use workboxes and many methods. It is probably one of the most versatile systems to be popularized since the bookshelf when it comes to homeschooling.

Why workboxes?

With workboxes, I am able to have all my materials ready to go for each subject each week. Every subject (some people do tasks) has its own box with the materials we are currently using. Since we use a lot of manipulatives, extras and make quite a few lapbooks, it keeps things organized well.

Also, with workboxes, I set things up once a week in the box and just pull out the boxes as needed. In the past I had to pull out books from the shelf, papers from the file and find special ways of keeping lapbook pieces organized and separated from worksheets.

What are the methods that people use?

plastic boxes:
you can fit a variety of stuff in them, books lay flat, you can see inside them
they take up quite a bit of room, games and such with small pieces may fall out in the box

towers of drawers:
books lay flat, you can fit a variety of stuff in them
they take up space, draws may stick, things can get caught

magazine boxes:
stand upright, little pieces would stay together better
they take up a lot of shelf space, large manipulatives may not fit well

file folder systems:
take up less room, portable
you can't see what is in there, manipulatives don't fit, workbooks can get bent

How do I use workboxes to organize schoolwork?

units:
I am able to put everything that we need for a unit into a box. There may be small discovery boxes, maps, lapbook pieces, folders for finished work, books, videos, music, pictures, stickers, baggies with project pieces, etc. Everything is all together and ready to use.

skill subjects:
For these, I can include, texts, workbooks, worksheets, manipulatives, games, etc. I usually have whatever manipulatives we are currently using in our lessons and games that review skills that the child is working on.

I have found that workboxes are a great way to keep the things we use for schoolwork together and organized. The system helps our days to flow smoothly especially when the boxes are well-planned and prepped for the coming week or unit.

Are workboxes keeping your school organized?

1 comment:

Fiddler said...

We use workboxes, as well, and I found your site by googling "Waldorf workboxes." One of my children thrives with more of a Waldorf approach, and I'm struggling a bit to figure out how to put things in boxes for her (8 y.o. DD). I like your idea of putting what you need for each subject per week in the boxes instead of filling them up each day with individual tasks. Will have to ponder some more on that. Please let me know if you have any other insights for me!

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