A couple of weeks ago, an innocent little FaceBook discussion got me thinking…..
…… how on earth am I going to keep a record of all the wonderful things the kids make and create? I mean, I don’t know about you but it is a daily occurrence now that the children are making things, Elodie is obsessed with tracing everything and anything in sight and she is writing her life story, complete with illustrations. She is only on chapter five and is predicting that it will run to at least 25 chapters! Where on earth am in going to store that beauty!? Chapter Five, incidentally, is when she remarks on how she has to sit next to the naughty boy for several months to help him behave at school (!) Finlay is regularly raiding the recycling bin to create epic machines, my favourite being the seed sorting machine which was about 30cm long and consisted of 12 different recycling bin items. I’m sorry to say, it met a sorry end when I accidentally on purpose trod on it whilst hoovering and it made its final goodbye to its recycling bin end. Orla is obsessed with glue and makes glue based ‘sticky picky’ pictures for me and then often attempts to glue them to the fridge because she wants them ‘on display’ and that’s the thing….. They all want all of their creations on display all-the-time! And, why shouldn’t they? I’m sure there’s someone with hours of time on their hands, who has proven the correlation between the parents who display art work an the healthy self esteem of their children.
At the moment, we operate a one-in, one-out policy on our kid’s art work for our kitchen gallery wall and we keep large files of their best pieces and school certificates in age expandable files – see my previous post on this here. Let’s be honest, this blog is a fairly good collation of all of the things they’ve made although I don’t always take photos of each child’s creation, normally just whomever’s is the best end product! Oops!
So when Children’s Art Galleries I jumped at the chance, particularly as their slogan is: ‘Today the Kitchen Wall, Tomorrow the World!’ It does seem a shame to constantly hide the kid’s artwork away in a file or the loft and no-one can possibly have a fridge big enough to accommodate all of our kiddo’s making sessions!
Children’s Art Galleries kindly sent us a ‘Get Busy Box’ to make our first creations for our galleries with the prompt ‘how I feel today’. Well, the kids did not need much prompting with this one. They were firstly very taken with their very own Art Box, so much so that I realised I must continue to add to this one as they use it up. Once they knew that their picture was going to be uploaded onto their own art gallery, they were thrilled and Finlay went to town by acting out his emotion for his photo as well as exploring the emotion through his collage! He’s such a show off. In case you hadn’t guessed, his emotion was ‘worried’ (I’ve absolutely no idea what he was worried about!)
Once you’ve uploaded your pictures and they’ve been moderated and approved as safe for little eyes, you can share them on social media or by email, either a specific picture or even the whole gallery, which is brilliant if you have family that live far away.
My children LOVE looking through their files of their childhood’s so far and regularly ask for their baby books out to browse through, so to them, their own online gallery was just so exciting! The main gallery on the home page shows what art works other children have been creating and Elodie particularly liked this feature as she could browse for inspiration. Children can earn awards for how many pieces of artwork they have uploaded, which means they’re excited to get creative and ensure that you snap their pieces!
I think the loveliest thing about Children’s Art Galleries is that you have a visual recollection of how much they’ve changed, what they’re interested in and how their creativity is developing and that you can view their whole gallery all in one place, at a click of a button without having to undertake operation loft search! (This is a regular problem in this house!)
Children’s art galleries have kindly gifted us our subscription, but to pay for an individual gallery for four children is only £10 a year, which I think is really reasonable. My kids are super excited to get creating and uploading!
So, now I have their art-work sorted, what of all the other bits of kid’s paper, the certificates and the school books and the special birthday cards? Right now, we use expandable box files with a folder for each year.
But they are becoming full and a little too unwieldy so I’m thinking of upgrading them to these fab boxes – this looks like it would last a childhood/ lifetime!
And here is another fab post from Megan Zheni with tips about how to organise all the artwork, letters and school paper!
How do you organise all your kiddos school papers? Do you have any fab ideas for displaying or storing artwork? I’d love to hear them!