Thursday, July 16, 2009

My File Crates

The file crates are ready so we must be ready for school! This is one of Dawn's excellent ideas. If you've been reading this blog for very long you know how much I adore Dawn's organizational style. We're trying out her file crate system this year and I'm really excited about making this work for us. 


My modifications to the system:



The most obvious change is that I have two file crates. The first crate is the one that looks like Dawn's - weekly files divide into hanging files marked for every 2 months starting with July. This is the file crate that structures our week. I put any papers or crafts that we'd like to do in the appropriate week and then we get to them whenever we're able during the week. I also file papers regarding our schedules in there- upcoming events, doctor's appointment reminders and all that go into the file crate.


The second crate has 1 hanging folder for each month, and it stores all my seasonal ideas that don't belong to any particular week. I have this crate partly because my mother was an early childhood educator for several years and I have all of her papers and printables that she gave me after she retired. I also have all of MY papers and printables from the years I spent teaching early childhood also- I have more than enough material to do at least 5 years of preschool and kindergarten units! There is no way I can do everything that is in here in one year, but I don't want to lose track of the materials. Organizing this material seasonally allows me to assign it to certain weeks more easily, so it's one of my first stops when I'm planning.


I have a page like Dawn's for my menus our weekly agenda and all that, but I also add two more planning pages. One is for the Montessori work each boy will be doing in the next several weeks, and the other is for book orders from our library. I tuck those pages into the front of my folders. It works better for me to sit down and plan out about 8 weeks worth of Montessori work for the boys (what to put out on the shelves each day, which presentations to do, materials needed, etc.). There are things that change on this plan since new interests come up along the way, but it helps me to be organized about having the necessary materials on hand.


In the back of the planning file I keep the catalogues I have from places like Lakeshore Learning and Montessori Services. I keep our Parks and Rec activity book in there too since they offer a lot of classes and activities for families. My other planning books are on the shelf right above the one where my crates reside.


Thank you for the brilliant idea, Dawn!

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