Friday, February 26, 2010

Boys and Organizing AHHHHHHH! Frustrations

I heard today that the greatest thing about social media is authenticity. That if you are your authentic self then you have no worries in the blogging world because there is only one you. Hear the interview at the 5 minutes for mom blog site here.

So there is only one me and I am going to authentic with you all today.

So, gave the boys a light day of school and asked them to catch up on anything they did not finish this week while I was out of commission with my sore tooth/extraction. They were also supposed to organize their papers. Because, in spite of the fact that I said I was not going to let paperwork get out of hand this year, it is! I know boys are not typically as organized as girls are but mine are driving me crazy.

I need chocolate!!! Lots of chocolate!!! Something soft and easy on my gums where my tooth was pulled... like chocolate ice cream... oooh I have some hot chocolate out in the kitchen. I think I will make some after I finish this post.

Back to the boys. So my 13 year old son, Christopher, hands me his notebook saying he is finished. He has his papers shoved in the front and back pockets of the notebooks. I give it back to him telling him that was not sufficient organizing and that I wanted him to hole punch his pages and put them in his notebook and put all lapbook pieces in a ziplock bag. He put the lapbook pieces in a ziplock and punched holes in the ziplock and put it in his notebook. The notebook pages he put in the punch, punched wholes in them and put them in his notebook. So he did what I said, right? Right... and wrong. He did not even make sure all the pages were right side up and one of them was folded over on the corner and so it did not get punched on that corner, he also did not put them in any kind of order. He just jammed them in the whole punch and put them in his notebook. Why does he think this is acceptable? I guess it is my fault because I did not spell out to him what I wanted done with enough detail. I thought he understood.
I do not now if Nathan has organized any of his yet. He is not done school and it is 4 pm. He says he cannot concentrate.

The boys have workboxes. We have been using them since late September or early October of '09. The workboxes were a review we did for the TOS crew. They have kept me more organized and prepared for school each week. We still have trouble with paper organization though. I could take over and keep the finished work myself but the boys need to learn to manage their own stuff.

First we had a box for papers that needed to be put away. I told the boys to put the papers in that box away each day. That did not work. We tried doing it once a week. That did not work. Why? because I did not enforce it. I did not check those boxes at the end of the day or week and make sure they did what they were supposed to before they went on to playing. My boys will not do anything that I do not check on and enforce.

Then I had them put their notebooks in their workboxes and told them to put the pages in as we went. I had them leave the page out of their notebook to make it easier for me to check them, then when I gave the workboxes back to them they were to put the pages in their notebooks. They still did not do it. I thought they were doing it. They were taking the pages and just adding them to a pile.

So this is what I am going to do. This weekend we will organize their notebooks... again. Then I am going to have the boys put their pages in their notebooks each day as they do them and I will check not only that the pages are done but that they are in the notebooks.

Mini books for lapbooks will have to be put in the workboxes separately and then added to their ziplock bags before they can be considered finished. I guess I will have to look at those workboxes twice, once to check the mini books and once to make sure they put them away.

Well, that is my new plan. What tips do you have for keeping your kids work organized. Maybe you have a great tip that would help me out. If you do leave me a comment with your idea or if you have a blog post about it leave the url of that post so I can read up.

How was your week?



Anonymous said...

Today I just went out with the two older kids to look for something that would help us organize our school supplies. We just had a plastic bin type box on the school table with a few different bags/containers which were supposed to hold pencils in one, crayons in another, etc. Never happened during the day. I just assigned it as a chore to one of the kids to reorganize the box each day.

So today the only thing I saw that might work was tooth brush holders. We have two now on our school table with pencils, scissors, rulers, glue stick and paint brushes sticking out of them.

The colored pencils and markers are in a jar type thing :) and the crayons are in a mini plastic box. We'll see if it can last. It made it through one day in tact which is impressive enough.

Papers? Um...I have to remind them everyday it seems to put away their school stuff. I have a standing file holder that they are supposed to put all their work in, papers and spiral notebooks, for me to check. I put things away from there. But mine are elementary...or maybe that's just an excuse :)

Annette W. said...

Yea for hot chocolate! It's my "I need a sweet snack and some sugar" all in one!

I think using the weekend to organize is a great idea when they won't do it during the week. Maybe doing it on a couple of Saturdays will motivate them, and if not, at least it will get done!


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