Every year for the last several years I have gathered the children’s work together at the end of the year and bound it together. These binders have become treasured keepsakes of the children, they hover around whilst I am compiling it all together, anxiously waiting to see their book.
I have just finished doing last years, this is a job that takes a good day or so to do six binders. It is my way of validating to the children that their work is important, it is worth keeping and yet at the same time taming the paper tiger. They make a wonderful memory to look back on and from my viewpoint gives me a visual reminder of the progress the children are making.
The title page simply consists of the child’s name and the year. The second page is a collection of photos of the child showing various highlights of the year. Then I have a progress checklist appropriate to the child’s age, this is a wonderful way to check the skills achieved and areas still needing work. The next pages are various certificates from the year, soccer, sports certificates etc. Then on to the academics, we have a Language Arts section with a list of many of the books each child has read throughout the year and sub-sections of copywork, dictation, spelling, grammar and creative/report writing. Some of these pages I will glue on to coloured paper to relieve the white pages. I tear pages out of their exercise books to go in so everything is together. Also the work from their notebooks-history, geography, science and their liturgical year notebooks go in. Plus various artwork from the year. Basically anything the children do throughout the year I gather and store for the binder.
Therefore for every child at the end of the year I have one binder and maths exercise books and for the younger ones an ongoing copywork book. This I feel is mastering paper clutter.
These are indeed precious.