Thursday, November 20, 2008

HOW can a homeschooled child lose a pencil?

What do you mean you don't have a pencil? Didn't I give you a pencil box and tell you to put your things away after each time you use them? HOW can you lose your pencil when you are homeschooled?!?!

Who knows? I just know that this was a regular occurrence at our home and, as I understand it, in many of your homes, too! I thought I was nice and organized because each child in our family had a plastic pencil box with their name labeled on the outside of the box. Taped to the inside lid was a list of the contents that should be inside: pencil, pen (for older children), highlighter, eraser, ruler, gluestick, etc. Anyway, it didn't work. For years and years, I kept using this system, but it kept not working. Their things were always getting lost and little ones were always getting into the pencil boxes.

So, I came up with something new. The supplies basket!

TA DA! Now, THIS works. First of all, we have two jars. One houses pencils and pens. The other jar holds erasers and pencil sharpeners. In the bottom of the basket, you will also find small rulers, a small stapler, a highlighter, a gluestick and a pair of scissors. While the children are doing seatwork, the basket sits on the dining room table. When they are not, the basket is put into a cupboard with a childproof lock on it. This way, when we find a pencil somewhere, we always know where to put it. No more trying to determine who is missing their pencil or who didn't put away their eraser. I'm telling you, for weeks now, I have had not one complaint of someone not having a school supply.

The other benefit is that the basket is attractive, unlike the plastic pencil boxes. I have learned that surrounding ourselves with as much beauty as we can adds to the soothing atmosphere I am trying to establish in our home.

See you tomorrow as we continue to examine Charlotte Mason Basics in the real life homeschool!


  1. I may have to try this idea. I did away with the individual boxes a while ago, and went to a small drawer in the closet, but the problem is getting everything back into the closet after schoolwork is finished (why?!!!). If the basket is sitting right there where they are working we might actually keep everything together. Thanks for the tip!

    I have really enjoyed reading through your blog. You have great tips and ideas.

  2. Thanks so much, Sue! It makes my day to hear that you have enjoyed my blog. I find the blogs of other moms so often encourage and inspire me and that is just what I hope to do here. :)

  3. Christine! i often ask myself the same question! how does a homeschooled child loose a pencil, love you tip, thanks!