So many treasured memories. So little time! And as one who has finished up this homeschool adventure — I can assure you — it does go very fast!
You can call it a homeschool portfolio or a simple homeschool scrapbook. It can be more than one notebook used to hold yearly memories and accomplishments for each child, or one big binder full of yearly family progress.
Yes, there will likely be overlap between this homeschool scrapbook and other notebooks a student keeps. But this one is special! It contains those special accomplishments, keepsakes, and memories.
Capture each moment!
- Include a reading list. I think our biggest memories are those books we have read — whether together or shared separately — and have discussed or those that have elements that spontaneously come to mind and provide a chuckle, or observation, or comparison, or thought. Include books that have been read aloud as well as those books each child has read.
- Include handwriting samples. This is one area where — no matter how lightly you treated the subject — you can definitely see progress! Choose samples that touch the heart.
- Include writing samples. Another area where progress is so evident as we look back through the years. Writing samples can come from any subject area; but again, choose those samples that have special meaning to the student or family.
- Include photos. One of my favorite mottoes is “show; don’t tell.” What better way to “show” those accomplishments than to document them with digital pictures? Field trips, science experiments (typically gone awry), recitals, special projects, crafts, historical plays, or just pictures of the family on the couch sharing a read-aloud.
- Include audio. OK, so you need to make this a digital scrapbook for this to work well. Have your child read aloud and record the reading once each year. I absolutely treasure an audio of my new reader reading a passage from that favorite book!
- Include artwork. Again, what progress! From stick figures to beautifully detailed illustrations. Wow.
- Include end-of-year interviews. Another way to really see growth. From “I didn’t like…” to more thoughtful responses as our children grow.
- Include your own thoughts. If you have kept a journal or diary during this time of life, select a few quotations to include in your homeschool scrapbook. Want to see growth? Look in the mirror!
10 Evaluation Interview Questions
Ideas for capturing our students’ thoughts after a year.
Summer Fun Activity: Photographic Wrap-Up
Not just for summer!
Helps for New Homeschoolers: Make Memories
You’ll appreciate having done this when you look back!
Printables & Notebooking Pages
Variety of resources at MarthaStewart.com.
Powerful, free open-source software for beautiful photo page layouts. Results can be exported to PDF or other formats. Like most powerful software applications, there is a learning curve. Free video tutorials are available online.
Enjoy the entire series: