At the end of every year I take time to do some housekeeping. Kids grow and change so quickly that we will forget how they are at this age. I try to make a snapshot or time capsule of who they are at this age and file it away in a memory book or box. It is important not to save everything or throw everything, but find a happy medium that works for you. What would I do?
1. Save the last report card and file it in my child’s School Memory Book. You could make your own, but I’ve found it is really convenient to just have the pre-made, store bought one!
2. Look through the school work I have saved over the year and choose 2-3 samples of writing and 2-3 artwork from the year to save. This is really the hardest part for me. Make sure your child’s name is on it (have them write it if it isn’t) and date is visible and legible.
3. Take digital pictures of them all (not just your absolute favorites) and put them with your digital photo albums. I wasn’t sure I wanted to save this art piece my daughter did this year in 1st grade at school, but it has got such great color. I made a digital image of it and may turn it into a card to send “snail mail” to her Grandparents!
4. Go through your digital pictures from the year and print off 5-10 photos that represent their learning, growth, major accomplishments, and friends from the year. These go into the memory book folders. If you have time and haven’t already, make sure to send your kids Grandparents a copy too!
5. Give your child a blank piece of paper and ask them to draw a self portrait of themselves and write about it too.
6. While they are drawing, you (the parent) take a minute to write down all the wonderful things about your child – the things that they do or say that make your heart melt. You can make a list or write a paragraph, just do it. Date your writing and file that too!
6. Have them complete an informal survey about their likes and dislikes. (My daughter’s teacher had the kids write a little book of some of their school favorites. If you know the original blog source for the above fishbowl template – please leave me a comment and I will credit the source!) The book was really bulky, so I just took a digital image of it because it was cute and a good representation of who my kid is right now! I like my informal surveys to all fit on one page =) File this in the school memory folder too.
Some ideas you may want to include are:
My best friends:
My favorite snack after school:
The best lunch ever:
My favorite school subject:
The best book I read this year was:
I like to write about:
The best thing that happened this year at school was:
My favorite thing to do at recess is:
My last piece of advice is:
The most important thing is that you just do something now. So if you are reading this and haven’t taken 15 minutes to organize your child’s school year growth and memorabilia, go do it! (Don’t just put this in your PINTEREST to do board!) If you are reading this at work or on the go, schedule 15 minutes when you get home to tackle this task.
This post contains an affiliate link to amazon for the memory book to save you time