Inspired last summer by the crazy long filing thread and in past years by By Sun and Candlelight's File Crate System, I decided to set up files for our homeschool.
At first, I thought I'd put everything in weekly folders. In other words, pages for everything into a folder marked "Week 1" and so on. I even started that way. And then we got behind and more behind. And I just wasn't using the folders for September through November. Well, that just isn't going to work long term.
So, the first week of January, I tore apart the files and refiled by subject and by pupil. And, I must say, it is working beautifully (after, you know, two weeks of lessons). I set up five crates and a "work box."
Many of my children's things are color coordinated. M-girl has red things, N-boy has blue, and R-girl green. The three children each have a crate in their color.
Their crates are divided into 3 sections: 1) Directed Work, 2) Independent Work, 3) Other miscellaneous stuff. Their Directed Work is items such as their MEP binders, McGuffey Readers, WWE pages, Penmanship pages, etc. Independent Work is assigned books, Explode the Code Pages (for the olders, R-girl is directed with ETC), Math Mammoth Pages, Kumon Cutting pages, coloring pages for R-girl, etc. The Other things are coloring books, coloring calendars, and such. Mostly these crates are for me to get in and out of. The kids each have a white board and colored pencils they can get in and out, but generally, this is for me to utilize.
The other two crates are for me and their divided by "Skills" and "Content" as described here.
Most of the "Skill" work is of the "do the next lesson" variety. So I can pull out the folders and the books when we get to that lesson or pupil and move on without a lot of breaks. The content crate allows me to do some planning and prepare ahead of time because I have the main manuals, teacher texts, and requirements lists all in one easy to carry place.
The final piece to the "system" is the box of assigned work. There are three dividers (in the children's colors) with folders marked Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Done. They also have a notebook pencil holder with scissors, pens, pencils, and such. At the end of the week it takes moments to select Independent work for the next week and put it in a folder for each day. The children have been doing a nice job helping one another read and follow directions and work through this work.