The definition for organizing is “the action of organizing something”. What a sweet and simple definition, right?
They make it sound so easy but I know many of us mommas find organizing a REAL struggle.
The definition for intentional is “done with a purpose”.
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So what if we combined the word intentional to the beginning of that simple word, organization.
It changes that simple action of organizing to a driven purpose. Right? When we make something intentional, like intentional organization, then it becomes a part of what we do out of habit.
I find so much joy in cleaning out that and reorganizing this in our homeschool house. Am I weird? Yep! But I praise God for this gifting.
This being our 6th year of homeschooling, I’ve had to learn how to organize along the way. And guess what…I have a few simple secrets to share with you!
Intentional Organization Secrets
- Less is More – When it comes to intentional organization, if you happen to have A LOT to organize, you’ll have A LOT to clean up. Be intentional about what books, supplies, and materials you really need to make your homeschooling work. Because I am a teacher turned homeschooler, I found this challenging in the beginning years of our homeschool. I had come from the classroom setting where we had 25 of EVERYTHING! I was used to having a plethora of materials and supplies as a classroom teacher. And I found myself, as a homeschool mom, collecting (possibly hoarding) these for our homeschool. It created clutter and chaos! My solution, about 2 years ago, was just to simplify. My children never noticed the difference between having 1 set of crayons versus a whole canister of them.
- Define your Learning Spaces – You wouldn’t put the mixing spoons out in the garage or your hair brush in the kitchen. (Well if you have a toddler in the house, that might be your case. Been there, done that) Take some time to really observe where your learning happens and intentionally about defining your space. If most of your reading happens in the living room, provide a space (I love baskets) for books by your couch. Math for us usually happens at the kitchen table, so I make sure that our manipulatives are handy and stored close by. If you have nature journals that are being used, tuck them away in a cool basket by the door or window for easy access. And add a tin can of colored pencils inside the basket as well. Intentionally defining and organizing your children’s learning spaces will simply organizing supplies…I promise!
- Rethink, Repurpose and Reuse – I spend very little money on plastic storage bins. After I’ve defined my learning spaces, I can really begin with intentional organization. I start looking for buckets, bins, and boxes that I can reuse. I’ve used plastic bins that are missing lids for book baskets. I’ve used laundry tab containers for math manipulatives. (extra tip: using the containers that have childproof lids are perfect when you have little learners that like to dump everything out!) Instead of using our coat closet in our entryway for coats, we use it for school supplies! Why? Because we use these items every day and this closet is closest to our schooling area. I reused a purposeful space for an intentional use that will benefit our homeschool.
Give yourself some time and grace to get organized. Take off a day(s) from teaching to clear out the clutter, reorganize or repurpose a space that just isn’t being utilized. And don’t give up on becoming an intentional organizer. You’ve got this!
Share with us some of your intentional organization secrets in the comments below.
Read all of our Intentional In Life Series Posts.
Ashley is a public teacher/reading coach turned homeschooling mother to 3 fun boys! Her passion is to inspire parents with adaptable educational ideas for their children. If she’s not teaching her boys, she’s teaching others. She enjoys sharing her knowledge with others through interactive workshops that parents can attend with their children.