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  • Writer's picturejondab

End of School Organization



The last day of school is almost here! In my local school district, the last day is May 20. The children are sooooo ready for this final day and the beginning of summer break. On the last day you just know they are going to rush home, dump their school stuff in a corner, and run off to play.


OK, so give them one day. But, that pile in the corner must be handled. Those stacks of old school papers, that whiffy backpack, and the end of year mementos have got to be dealt with before summer can really begin.


Schedule a time with your student or students.


Start with the backpack. Clear a space – maybe put down newspaper and keep dogs and cats clear for their own safety. Then turn the backpack upside down and dump the contents on the floor. Shake it a few times so that what is stuck to the bottom with old gum and candy also falls out.


Now have your student do a sort.

· Any smelly clothes and sneakers go to the laundry.

· Tattered papers and candy wrappers go to the trash.

· End of the year awards can be salvaged and filed or put into memorabilia boxes.

· Check out old crayons, pencils, and other school supplies and see if they are usable for summer art or are in such bad shape they need to be trashed.

· If anything in the pile tries to crawl away – step on it.

· Decide if the bag is going to be used again or is now also ready for the trash (broken zippers, tears, straps broken).



Do not let this clutter stay beyond one week. Have everything that is saved put away and everything that is no longer usable, trashed or recycled.


If your student has a study station and a place where they store schoolwork, also schedule a time to reorder this area.

· Sort through papers and artwork and file ones that are memorable. Have a portfolio divided into years to keep the very best. Label all work with the date.

· Trash all old notices and reminders that are no longer needed

· Update the bulletin board and calendar for summer activities

· Declutter supplies and get rid of any that are no longer used


Now, enjoy the summer!



If you want help or just some accountability in setting up projects or working your organizational plan join Diane Quintana and me on our Clear Space For You clutter support group.


Jonda S. Beattie, Professional Organizer owner of Time Space Organization, and co-owner of Release, Repurpose, Reorganize. She is based in the Metro-Atlanta area. As presenter, award-winning author, as well as a retired special education teacher she uses her listening skills, problem solving skills, knowledge of different learning techniques, ADHD specialty, and paper management skills to help clients tackle the toughest organizational issues. Jonda does hands on organizing and virtual organizing. For more of Jonda’s tips connect with her on Facebook.


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Julie Bestry
Julie Bestry
May 30, 2022

This was funny and informative, and reminded me of the fact that when I was in elementary school, before anyone used backpacks, we had bookbags — usually canvas ones. I've no idea what happened to anything, but I'm pretty sure that except for awards, my mom just threw anything out without worry that I'd ever need any of it. By middle school, my mom left me to be in charge of everything related to school, so I did all of this stuff myself. I don't think anything was "whiffy" but I was already obsessive about purging and organizing. ;-) Thanks for the memories.

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Sara Skillen
Sara Skillen
May 23, 2022

I read this one with a mixture of laughter and remorse - this will be my last year to have a "last day of school," as my youngest graduates this Friday. 😔 Odd to think that I will miss the "whiffy backpacks"! But humor aside, there's such great advice for parents here.

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jondab
jondab
May 23, 2022
Replying to

My baby boy is in his 50's but I still remember!

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Linda Samuels
Linda Samuels
May 23, 2022

You brought me back to those end of school days and the decluttering of the backpacks and items that the kids came home with. Having a process to reset at the end of the year like the one you so beautifully described is essential. Of course it doesn't have to be done THAT last day, as you mentioned, but doing it sooner than later helps not just the parents, but also your kids, make the transition from one time period to the next. And that is an essential life skill. Plus it will make the transition back to school go more smoothly too.

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jondab
jondab
May 23, 2022
Replying to

Thanks for your response. It has been a long time since I have had to deal with this myself, but I do remember.

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smqorgadm
May 23, 2022

Preach! It's even worse when they come back from college. Thanks for sharing your tips to tackle this process.

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dnqsolutions
May 18, 2022

Great advice!

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