Documenting School

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A few years ago, I started collecting my daughters’ homework and other school-related memorabilia (school portraits, artwork, certificates, etc.) in a 8.5×11 binder – a separate one for each of them. Everything was placed in chronological order but that’s about the only semblance of order it had. Photos were added in randomly. Most of the photos were just floating in the pocket pages because that’s what happens when you’re using plain 8.5×11 page protectors and don’t use tape to stick things down because you’re not fully committed to the format.

You know those instances when you’re stuck on a project because something is missing, but you don’t quite know what that it is? In the case of the school binder project, the missing pieces were these 8.5×11 Pocket Pages by We R Memory Keepers: the baseball card sized pockets and my personal fave, this one with the 2 4×6 pockets and a wide panoramic pocket (perfect for including lots of photos). An easy and aesthetically pleasing way to include photos? Yes please! I don’t know why I didn’t think to apply the pocket-page scrapbooking approach to this project earlier!

The baseball card sized pockets are ideal for storing wallet sized formal school portraits. This page is currently the “working” title page for Madeline’s school album. I might change things up as the pockets get filled, maybe add a journaling card for each year. For now, it’s just the photos. I think it will be neat to see all of her school photos side by side. She already looks like a baby in her pre-school photo!

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This is the intro page for Madeline’s Kindergarten Year. The 4×6 photo slots will be the same for every school year – a close up of her taken on the first day of school and a photo of her and Audrey together. The top slot is a collage of events from the first half of her school year. (Both the collage template and the 4×6 templates will be available in the shop tomorrow).

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The back side is dedicated to a school field trip. I was a parent chaperone at that event so I had more than enough photos to fill the entire page. The right side includes photos of her teachers and a few random shots taken throughout the year. Couldn’t resist including a few Halloween photos. Elsa was definitely the most popular costume of the year, I think almost everyone in her Kinder class dressed up as Elsa!

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My overall goal with this school binder project is to have a few inserts documenting each school year.  So ideally, by the time they graduate from high school, their school memories will all fit in one (ok, maybe two) binder(s). On that note,  in the interest of saving space, I opted to scan in some of her school and art work and printed them to fit in the baseball card sized pockets (the template I used for this will be available in the shop tomorrow!).

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The first half of Madeline’s Kindergarten year is documented with 3 page inserts. I suspect that I will only need one or two more inserts to complete the latter half, including her spring field trip and the big event – her Kindergarten Graduation. Now that I have a formula down, I’m excited to go back and tackle their earlier school years!

PRODUCTS USED IN THIS PROJECT

Photo Templates

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Blog Comments

Perfection! I am so glad you shared this!!! I was just about to start putting my girls school albums together but felt the 12×12 wasn’t quite right. Thank you!!! Can’t wait for tomorrow!!!

I felt the same way about the 12×12 format Elizabeth! The templates are going live for presslist subscribers in a few hours and the newsletter includes an extra savings coupon so be on the lookout for it! Thanks for stopping by and for your kind comments!

Totally feel the same. I’ve been considering 12×12 but haven’t been able to jump in. Maybe 8.5 x 11 is the answer. Is that what you’re going with, Elizabeth? I’ve never done an 8.5 x 11 album, but the size is appealing.

Amazing,Liz. You are really my hero.I buy up everything you make..I don’t even think about it,because I know it will be perfect. I will be picking these up tomorrow. I just love what you’ve done with this school album.I am so inspired.

Thank you so much!!

Lovely as usual. My oldest is in kindergarten this year too, so the release of these templates is perfect! I should be able to have this school year done by the time she starts again in the fall.

Thank you for sharing this Liz. I’m at that point where I’m unsure how to move forward with my boys’ school albums. I recently bought a two basic 4 ring binders and standard A4 (bigger than US letter) page protectors and popping their report cards and drawings in just so that I’m doing something. i will eventually do a photo book with your Mini Masterpieces template but I’m still struggling with their baby albums and our family albums. It’s the decision making and formula that’s hindering my progress. But I love seeing what you do, as always, so lovely and inspiring.

I have had exactly the same problem! This is such a great idea.

Liz, this is brilliant! I have put off down anything about our kids albums (we homeschool, so school and life are very integrated) because I couldn’t figure out how I wanted to do it. 12×12 is just too big, but I love the ease of pockets. This solves it! I love seeing how you put your girls’ pages together. Your formula is so much easy to follow, and I love your new collection which gives it all a cohesive look. Thank you!

This isn’t the first time we’re on the same page, but I had to tell you – we’re on the same page with this one, completely! I’ve been saving the “stuff” Ben’s brought home this year (his first year of preschool) and I told my sister a couple months ago that I plan to do exactly this with it. Photograph some, scan some, mix in pics of him in school and from throughout the year to create a couple of layouts for the school year so we end up with a couple of albums documenting his school years. I was going to do 12×12 but haven’t been able to pull the trigger. Maybe I’ll try the 8.5 x 11. Does it feel big enough for you? I like the idea of Project Life because I could do a couple of 12x12s and some fun inserts. Hm…

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