I just got back from my wonderful vacation and have been busy running errands, going to appointments, and getting settled back into my everyday life. It was an amazing two weeks full of relaxation and visiting with family and friends. Since it's summer, I'll continue to relax and move at a slower pace, but I can't help myself and must work on school stuff along the way.
Among my long school to-do list is figuring out what I plan to use for communication between home and school. I've tried a variety of things in the past, but haven't fallen in love with anything. My first year I used regular folders that went home and back everyday. News flash... those folders don't hold up all year! (Hey, it was my first year. lol) My second year I used hard binders (BEE Books) that had a pouch for money, notebook paper for notes, and a few important papers in page protectors. Again, these binders were destroyed! Last year was the best option thus far... plastic folders. I put notebook paper in the prongs for notes and a few important papers in page protectors. For the most part, these folders held up going back and forth daily. What I found with all of these methods was that the notebook paper wasn't used for communication (it was torn out or scribbled on by siblings) and the page protectors went missing.
One factor that will play into my decision of what to use for communication is how I do my homework. I think this year I am going to do a monthly homework calendar and have the kids turn it in every Friday and return it to them on Monday. For this, I will use a regular folder with prongs and replace it quarterly so it's always fresh and neat. (I found a great site with monthly homework calendars: here.)
So, what do I do about daily communication needs? What if a student needs to bring lunch money or has a note from home? What do I use to send home corrected work or other papers? This is where I'm stuck. I can't figure out what to do. I need them to have something to put their stuff in, but don't think it's necessary for them to take something home and back everyday. I suppose I could use regular folders for this, too, and replace them quarterly like the homework folders. I just hate having to waste my time looking through mostly empty folders everyday.
I would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your thoughts and ideas on this topic. Please share!