We are beginning our 8th year of official homeschooling on August 4th. Actually, real life is education, so we really "homeschool" around the clock, all year long. But, the "school stuff" begins again here at our house on August 4th. The four older children are at my parents' house for a 5 day visit, leaving Sam and me here at home, alone, to prepare for school. I remember when Sam was a little baby, I carried him in the Snugli while cleaning out my schoolroom. I am still holding him while cleaning....I wish he could still fit in that Snugli! Yesterday we cleaned out the entire schoolroom educational supply closet (games, puzzles, art and craft items, etc.), the paper closet (this holds our crayons, markers, all kinds and colors of paper, scissors, pencils, notebooks, folders, etc.), and the other closet (Little People sets, stationery, mailing supplies, Bible class resources, etc.). I already have 3 large bags of trash! Today I plan to finish the cleaning. I will clean out each child's "work bucket" and put their schoolbooks for next year inside. The work bucket is actually a dish pan with their name on the outside--just like the ones I use for their folded laundry. They keep all of schoolbooks and any personal school supplies inside their bucket. When it is time to "do school", they can grab their bucket and sit wherever they would like. It makes it easier to school in the car when necessary also.
I keep almost all items in the educational supply closet in plastic containers of various sizes--some are clear, some are not. Each year I put more items in plastic boxes as the orginal packing becomes worn. The plastic boxes stack neatly on the shelves. In the past I have used a sharpie marker to label each box, but yesterday I made labels on the computer. It really looks good! I even made labels for the items I store in large plastic cups--pencils. colored pencils, scissors, rulers, etc. I plan to post pictures later today when I am completely finished. The cleaning and organizing take longer than normal because Sam's siblings are not here to help entertain him, I am holding him or playing with him while doing most of the work, and he slept only 25 minutes yesterday without me and my hair.