Monday, September 7, 2009

Homework Helpers

The kids started back to school last Monday, and then promptly had a four day weekend. So now summer is officially, unofficially over!

In preparation for the first day of school we did our normal school supply shopping. Sprout is quite the connoisseur of school supplies, and is in possession of the world's largest collection of novelty erasers. I am thinking about submitting her to the Guinness Book of World Records. But regardless of how many pencils, pens and erasers (shaped like ice cream, and lipstick, and small animals, and hearts, and...) she has, there is always a thrill when "the list" arrives and we have to hit the Target to stock up for the year.

I have to say, I share in the thrill of the hunt for just the right notebook. And of course, an excuse to hit the Target is always welcome!

This year, we added some extras to our shopping list. I saw these homework cubbies in Family Fun Magazine and thought they might help the kids focus on getting through the dreaded homework hour (hopefully keeping it from becoming the homework four-hour-nightmare...)

We started with a cardboard presentation board and cut it in half height-wise (I did the cutting - utility knives + children + neurotic mother = too much for me to handle.)

After we had two half-height boards, I scored an additional line down each seam (described in the directions from FF Magazine, so that the cubby can be folded up with "stuff" inside.)

This picture shows Sprout holding the (closed) utility knife and ruler. Just to show you how...I did the cutting, but couldn't figure out how to take a picture of my own hands...

The lines are just scored through the top layer of cardboard so that the board can fold.

Like this...

After the cutting, we covered the inside of the cubby/board with contact paper.

Sprout was so traumatized by my inability to line things up correctly that she decided not to cover the outside of hers. Tater went along with covering both sides. We had to re-score the folds on his from the outside so it would fold with the covering on.

Then we used mounting tape to hang up hooks and supplies inside the cubbies. Each kid has a little white board to write down assignments or reminders, one side is covered with cork squares so they can pin up things, and they each have a pencil box mounted with Velcro so that they can take it down to get the pencils out.

Here is Tater's finished cubby:

And here is Sprout's. She is very excited about her protractor.

They were so excited when they finished these that they immediately went and got some workbooks to do a trial run. They were both sitting on the porch with their cubbies up, working on crossword puzzles or something...

Then they realized school hadn't started yet and they went to watch some Phineas & Ferb.

I hope these will be fun for them to use when they are doing real homework.

Maybe I need one, too. And some fun pencils - and an eraser that looks like a hamburger - and a protractor...


WackyMummy said...

That looks like fun. With the added bonus of getting them used to working in cubicles for a future white-collar job. ;-)

Fun Mommy K said...

Just what every child dreams of...their own spot in the cube farm!