24 January 2010

How Organized Are Your Homeschool Books???

Vicki asked me if I would make a post on how I organize our homeschool books. Well, I'm happy to say that I do have a few tricks up my sleeve and I would love to share with you all as well as hear some of your ideas!! It's not too often I actually come up with a nifty trick to get things to run more smoothly around here but this one works well. (I have to say though that getting a second clothes washer was a nifty trick as well but that was daddy's idea) Now if anyone comes up with ideas of how the washer and dryer can stop eating socks I need desperately to hear them!!

First I would like to discuss the "problem" that brought me to the "solution" that has helped me stay on top of our many books and curriculum. As a mom to lots of kids, a mom who has been homeschooling a long time, a mom who is a self-inflicted curriculum junkie, and a mom who simply loves books-as most of you do; I leave it to your imagination as to what my shelves may look like. That was the "problem!!" Not too many books, but not enough organization. A new school year would be upon me, or it may simply be a child finishing a study and needing new material that sent me to my unorganized shelves of books!! I would go through them and see 'new' things that hadn't been touched even though they had been there forever. SHUCKS, another great book that my 10 year old missed, or SHUCKS, another book that I wanted for my 12 year old!! It's true, children grow UP, and OUT of certain things. And that includes great books. The wonderful books, curriculum, etc. simply got lost amongst other books and then I would have children who didn't use them or are now too old for them. THAT problem is what me to my "solution" of not missing out on anything wonderful AND ensuring that my children got a thorough education.

The solution!! So simple it scares me!!
Area number ONE-All materials needed for the educating of our children ages 4-7. Including books, curriculum materials, book lists, teacher and lesson plans, etc.
Area number TWO-same as above except for ages 8-11.
Area number THREE-same as above for ages 12-15
Area number FOUR-same as above for ages 16-graduation.

We use the public library extensively here, they are a wonderful addition to our homeschool and the book lists that are shelved in the age/areas are the ones we get from the library. Our book lists are mainly literature titles that we don't own and are readily available from the library.

Resource type books have their own shelf as all children use them. We are very eclectic homeschoolers around here. A little of this and a little of that. All choices of materials which we have decided was the best for our children. Since our school is 'simple' in it's methodology then this system works well for us. In this way, no longer does a 'great' resource go unnoticed!! When the child has finished the academic requirements for that age/book area then they move on the next. Whether they are younger than the age I've listed, or older, doesn't matter. It only matters that they complete what's in their area/shelves!!

There it is!! I hope it makes sense and I would love to hear other ideas along this line. Please feel free to share as we can all learn from one another.


Cinnamon said...

I love your organizing ideas. I bet it looks so nice too :-)


Tristan said...

Neat idea!

Ours are organized similar to the library's. The nonfiction shelves have books on like topics together. Literature/fiction has it's own shelves, again arranged by topic/time period.

It has made it easy to find lots of books on a child's interests. Even the 4 year old can find the plants books, or the space books, or the egypt books. I love it!

Vicki said...

Thanks for answering my question! :) What a great idea... at this point our "stuff" is well, stuffed. :) I especially like the book list idea.

Beth said...

Hi! I just wanted to finally say THANK YOU for my blog award...I don't know how to "claim" it. I'm not very good at this blogging stuff......
You have inspired me to start being more organized. Right now, my 16 year old daughter can't find her Biology tests and quizzes booklets...EErrrgggg!!! I hope that I will organize and find them soon!!