Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Kid's Art

****I'm on VACATION!!!! While I'm away, I have some art and non-art posts scheduled. I'm so glad you are stopping by to visit, and as always, I appreciate your comments, but I'll be a little slower to respond than normal.*****

With a 4 1/2 and 1 1/2 year old in preschool/daycare, there is a steady stream (onslaught) of art projects that come home. Usually at least 2-3 items from the older one daily, and Carina's teacher batch processes, so about every other week, we get a big stack of art projects to bring home.

It's overwhelming to say the least.

We could wallpaper our whole home with this stuff, but frankly, most of it isn't worth saving.

So this is how we are currently tackling the art problem:

Step 1) Sort through and pick out the official art items (the ones that are actually made with construction paper/glue, you can tell they were part of a class art project) as well as particularly good drawings--the ones that have recognizable people/items. (A lot of what comes home are things Ellie traced and then colored in - all good for fine motor skills, but it can be rather repetitive.)

Step 2) Photograph all the pieces that weren't pitched. The plan is that one day I will burn a CD/DVD for each of the girls of all their art.

Step 3) Sort again to pick out the pieces I actually want to save. The bar for these is pretty high. Usually it involves handprints, family drawings, pieces where she was asked a question and drew the answer (for example when asked if she could have 100 of one thing, what would she choose, she said "dresses" -- things that showed her state of mind/things that are important to her at this age). I store these pieces in an Alex kids portfolio, and I have one for each of the girls.

You might notice that nowhere here does it say display pieces of art. This will likely change soon, but I'm reluctant to display the pieces that I actually want to preserve....reason being is that Ellie often wants to go back and improve her or Carina's projects, or play with them, and then they are altered, get torn, etc. I'll put up things that I don't plan to keep, but I try not to do that with the good stuff.

So then we have this problem: Ellie really does want to hang up and show off her pictures. Unfortunately, we don't like to have a ton of stuff on the walls in the house. Andrew is minimal when it comes to wall decor, we don't want a ton of nail holes in the walls, and it's not like our house is huge, so we just don't hang much up.

Here's our solution

Those rings are just some curtain rings/clips that I bought from Target. Ellie got them in her Easter Basket this year. They are in her room on the window rod and when she brings something home, or draws something she really loves, we can hang it up there. It doesn't clutter up the walls in the rest of the house, create holes or pull off paint, and she is totally in charge of what goes up there.

This system has worked out really well for us so far, but I'm curious (for those of your in the same situation), what are your solutions for the unending supply of art your kids produce? How do you deal with and document the volume? I'm always looking for good ideas, so I hope you'll share. Thanks for stopping by today!


  1. I loveeeeeee how you hung them up and loving your ideas!!! I have old Staples (the office store) copy paper boxes that I store them in -- one for Adam's old art and one for Brookie's!!!

  2. I love your idea! It's terribly cute to have them hanging on the rings like that. For my daughter's "current" major projects, we set the in the windows of our dining room and then they go into a box. It's definitely not the best system, though, since it always feels like we are inundated with artwork. Have a great vacation!

  3. I notice lightning didn't strike you when you wrote, "most of it isn't worth saving," so that means I can probably admit the same thing about my kids artwork! Our solution to the artwork display problem is a bulletin board. We have one in my office and anything the kids want to display goes on there. When it's full, they have to pull something off in order to put new stuff up.