How To Organize School Supplies For Home Use

Here are tips for how to organize school supplies that your kids will use at home for homework and school projects, including real life examples, with pictures, of these ways to get the supplies organized.

How to organize school supplies in your home for use by your kids when doing school projects and homework {on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

This organization topic is designed to be done while we work on the Back To School Organization Challenge here on the site, which is part of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge. of course, you can always organize your kids' school supplies whenever you want or need to though.

Declutter Unusable School Supplies

The first step in any organizing task is to declutter what you don't want or need, since there is no point in organizing clutter, and that includes school supply clutter.

Get rid of pens and markers that have dried up or no longer work (you can check out the declutter pens and pencils mission for more details about this one), as well as empty bottles of glue, broken scissors, overly crumpled up paper that can't be salvaged, etc.

Overall, this will be a pretty similar Declutter 365 mission as the one we did when we decluttered home office supplies earlier in the year.

Of course, a lot of school supplies can be used from year to year, until they're used up, so don't get rid of anything that is still useful just because it's old. The older school supplies from the end of the school year are the perfect types of things to use in your home during the next school year to allow your kids to have the appropriate supplies at home for homework and projects without breaking the bank, because we all know how expensive these supplies can be!

How to declutter kids' school supplies and then organize the ones left for use in your home for homework and school projects {on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Get The Necessary School Supplies For Your Home

Back to school supplies list, including free printable checklist of items to keep at home for homework and school projects

Once you've decluttered any unusable supplies it's time to make sure your child is ready to tackle their homework and school projects each night by getting the necessary school supplies.

The school almost always provides a list of the supplies you need to take to the school, for your child's classroom, but you also need to have some of these same types of items at home.

Homework time can be hard enough without also searching for a pencil with an eraser, or a glue stick to paste a piece of paper onto a worksheet.

To help you know what school supplies you should have at home I've created a free printable back to school supplies list for your home. You can get it at the link.


General Organizing Principles For School Supplies

Once you've got all the supplies it can seem like a lot of stuff, and it can easily become a jumbled mess if you're not careful. That's where organization comes in.

Here are some general guiding principles you should keep in mind when organizing and storing school supplies at home.

Gather Your School Supplies Into One Area

Keeping all of the school supplies together in one area is helpful for both you and your kids. They'll know where to find what they need without needing to ask you where this or that item is, or go on a hunt in several places around the house to gather things before they can begin. It also makes clean up easier, since they can just put everything back in the same place when the homework is completed.

The only caution I have for this organizational principle is to make sure you're not overwhelmed with supplies in one location. If you like or need to stock up on a lot of school supplies, in bulk, you don't have to keep every single pencil, for example, at the ready for your child at all times. Instead, keep a good selection of supplies together that they'll need, like a couple of pencils and pens, as well as the markers, scissors and glue, and the excess of each type of supply can get stored in a more out of the way location. Then, just replenish the smaller selection as your child uses up the supplies from the storage area.

Choose A Storage Location For The Supplies That Is Close Or Convenient To Where Your Kids Do Their Homework

Think about where your child normally does their homework or school projects, and if at all possible keep the supplies close to that location. Again, this helps your child to more easily access the supplies and put them away when finished.

Separate The Supplies Into Categories To Keep Things Neat & Easy To Find

If you just put all the different types of supplies together, in a big pile, it would get jumbled and disorganized quickly. That's why with whatever organizational method you choose, make sure there is a way to keep the different categories and types of supplies divided and separated, such as in small separate containers, with drawer dividers, or in different organizer drawers. You'll see several examples below.

With those organizing principles in mind, here are three different ideas you can use in your home for organizing and storing your school supplies. These are all real life examples sent in by readers who've already done this task, so you know they work in the real world. Choose the one that will work best for your space and your preferences.

Organizing Idea 1: Keep Inside Cabinet Using Organizer Drawers

How to create a school supplies cabinet for your kids to use when doing homework and school projects {on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

The first organizing idea is to put your school supplies inside a cabinet. One of the big advantages of this method is that you can then hide the supplies from sight, and only open the cabinet doors and access them when needed.

Creating a school supplies cabinet is simple, just clear out space in a cabinet hopefully close to where your kids do homework and then place the items inside. To keep them organized inside the cabinet the simplest way is to use organizer drawers, and have enough drawers to categorize and separate out the different types of supplies. Labeling the drawers is quite helpful as well.

The photos above showing examples of this organizational method in action were both sent in by readers. The top image is from a reader, Tamara, who said, "When I cleaned out the junk drawer I found many many pens and pencils, so I took them to my supply closet. I started this 7 years ago after I realized that the best time to buy supplies are at back to school time. So I started buying school supplies for the year and placed them here for the kids to go to when needed. I took the time to put the pens away and straighten the supplies today."

The bottom photo from this collage is from another reader, Rhonda, who said, "Office/school/craft supplies sorted, labeled, and behind doors. Light colored wood drawers are from IKEA. Drawer unit on right from Lowe's Home Improvement. And my label maker keeps me sane."

As I mentioned, it's important to have a drawer organizer or some other school supplies organizer inside the cabinet to keep all the different types of supplies sorted and categorized. Here's an example from a reader, Chris, who used such a set of drawers for organizing her pencils, markers and pens.

How to organize kids' pens, markers and pencils for both arts and crafts as well as for homework and school projects {on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Organizing Idea 2: Keep In Drawers Using Dividers Or Small Boxes

How to organize a school supplies drawer for your kids to use when doing homework and school projects {on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

A similar organizational idea is to keep your school supplies inside a drawer. Just like with a cabinet, if you place the supplies in a drawer then they are hidden from view, but again, you don't want to just throw the supplies in loose into the drawer because it's typically too large of a space and will make everything jumbled.

Instead, use low open containers to hold various supplies and keep them separate and categorized. Similarly, you could also use drawer dividers for this same purpose.

The collage of photos with examples of this organizational method also came from readers. The top photo is from Karla, who said, "This is how I organized them a while back. I know that there are more scattered around the house to add to these bins." The bottom photo is from Christine.

Organizing Idea 3: Keep In Caddy Using Cups Or Other Small Containers

How to create and organize a school supplies cart for your kids to use when doing homework and school projects {on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Finally, if you don't have a drawer or cabinet available, or close to where your kids work on their homework, you might want to consider making a homework caddy, where you can bring the school supplies to them.

That's exactly what a reader, Mel, did using a rolling organizer cart. She also used the sides of the cart as a place to hold her kids' backpacks, so it did double duty.

More Home Storage Solutions

{A-Z} Storage Solutions & Ideas

I hope you enjoyed these ideas for organizing and storing school supplies for use in your home.

There are even more ideas for storage and organizing on the site in the {A-Z} Storage Solutions & Ideas round up page. Go check it out if you'd like to see even more ideas.

Further, there are more decluttering missions here that you can also do, to slowly declutter your home, 15 minutes at a time, over the course of the year.

In addition, if these ideas have inspired you to organize even more stuff around your home as your kids go back to school make sure to read the Back To School Organization Challenge, which is part of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge I run on the site!


How to organize school supplies in your home for use by your kids when doing school projects and homework {on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

School supplies photo for the declutter mission courtesy of Morgan

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