Parents: You’ve come to anticipate the flood of artwork your children tote home in their backpacks each day, not to mention the masterpieces they create at home. But the fact is, you just can’t save it all. So how do you go about displaying, and honoring, your child’s artwork?
Try these simple, creative solutions for sorting and storing your kids’ masterpieces. Not only will you cut down on clutter, but also address the emotional principle of living with things you treasure and letting go of the rest.
- First-place pieces deserve prime real estate. Mat and frame their best work and position alongside purchased art in a central place. They’ll know what they created was special.
- A rotating art installation in your child’s room is as easy as installing a clothesline, bungee cord, or wire and clip set. It’s temporary, and clothespins and similar fasteners won’t damage artwork.
- Coffee table books and calendars are creative permanent display options and make great gifts. Some solid options include Mixbook, Shutterfly, Blurb, and Walgreens.
- Bulletin boards and poster-board collages are easy low-tech options as well.
- Binders with page-protecting sleeves can be labeled by year, grade level, or child and simplify the task of protecting and archiving masterpieces for the long haul. Have kids title each piece, then record that information on every page along with their age and the year. Children love flipping through their binders and looking at their own art, and can show them off to visiting family and friends.
- Additional storage ideas include mailing tubes (good for odd-shaped paper) and acid-free “memory” boxes.
- Let your kids choose sweet specimens to mail off to grandparents and far-flung family members. Older children can include a hand-written note.
- Cut honorable-mention artwork up into birthday, holiday, thank-you cards, or even gift tags.
- Sit down with your children and routinely go through their stacks. Recycle anything that’s just a scribble or doesn’t mean anything to them. You’re teaching a valuable lesson in reducing clutter and living with boundaries.
For creating imaginative art projects at home, check out these recommended posts:
For more organizational household tips, read “6 Ways to Revamp Your Workspace for 2013”