Thanks to the good folks at Ziploc® brand for making this post possible. As always comments, opinions and these organization tips for extracurricular activities are my own.
As each year passes it seems back-to-school season just gets busier and busier. And the busier we get, the more organized we need to be if we have any hope of keeping our lives in order. That means we need to find new ways to help our kids stay organized as well.
To our credit, we installed a stack of these large blue bins near the door last year so my boys could keep their equipment and other materials handy for extra-curricular activities.
The bins do help them zero in on the general area they need to begin their search, but as you can see by the wreckage, we haven't made it to organizational bliss…yet.
Organization Tips for Extracurricular Activities
So to reorganize, the first thing we did was empty out the bins. We got rid of everything that wasn't needed for their current activities. Some stuff was thrown out, some was stored elsewhere, and some was given away.
Now, here's a sampling of some of the things my younger son needs for his activities. He has both practice and game day gear for soccer and different items for scouts.
And here is a sample from our older son.
We have a total of four bins.
Soccer shoes and shin guards go into the bottom bin, so my boys can easily take their shoes off and kick them in there when they get home.
They each get a bin for their scout stuff, and there's a third bin where we store both their practice and game day soccer uniforms.
Now here is the simple and extremely effective new bit.
Both of my boys have two practices and one game per week, so instead of having all the soccer practice and game clothes folded inside the bin where they would get mixed up, we organized the outfits by practice and by child and stored each outfit in new Ziploc® brand bags with Easy Open Tabs.
My older son has bags with red tabs and my younger with blue tabs, so they won't get confused. It works beautifully.
We stack the bags in order, so they can just grab the top bag when it's time to get ready.
The tabs really are easy opening, so my seven-year-old can handle them with no problem.
The last tip I want to share with you is what we now call “go boxes.” Since we have soccer practice first, followed immediately by a scout meeting, we put together everything we need in these great little containers.
New stackable and nestable Ziploc® Containers are perfect for keeping things you don't want to lose between activities, but are easy to misplace, such as handbooks, neckerchief slides, crayons, and beads.
All I have to do now is tell my younger boy to grab his scout “go box,” and we are out the door and ready to go.
The boxes nest well inside each other, too. As you can see, I like to throw a couple of empty snack bags inside the box, in case the boys receive small awards, or beads or pins. They can keep these things together and put them in their boxes.
Probably one of the greatest benefits of these rectangles, besides keeping everything together, is my boys have no problem opening or closing them. They just require a one-finger push.
That's good so we don't have stuff strewn all over the front porch or the seat of the car as we head out. Check out this short 6 second video to see how easy it is:
Now check out my younger boy's scout bin! What a difference, right?
And here's my older son's scout bin.
I'm so pleased with our new organizing system. It helps keep our lives going so much more smoothly.