Creating a Kid Art Book

I've never actually counted how much art my kids produce in a single year - but I'm guessing it's about, oh, a gazillion pieces. Obviously, no matter how much my kids might want me to do so, I can't keep every single thing they make. So here's how I reduce what's kept and ensure it doesn't eat up a ton of space: 

1. When a piece of art is completed, it gets displayed for a week - maybe two. Definitely no longer. Flat artwork goes on the fridge. Anything three-dimensional goes on the mantel. 

 2. After this time, I determine which pieces we will keep. Anything I don't keep either gets composted or thrown away or is given to another family member. 

3. For all the flat art we keep, I write my child's name, age, and approximate date (i.e.: June 2011) on the back. If there's an important story that goes along with the piece, I write it on a piece of paper and attach it to the artwork itself. Then I place the art in a box in a closet. 

 4. For three-dimensional items I'd like to remember, I take a photograph. Once the photo is developed, I put notes on the back, just as if it were flat art, and it goes in the children's art box in the closet. 

 5. Every 6 months to a year, I go through the saved art box. I reconsider whether I should toss any items in the box. This sometimes happens because one of the kids produces a similar piece of art that I prefer, for example. Or maybe I discover I've just kept too much. I compost, throw away, or give away any items I decide not to keep. 

 6. The remaining art goes into a binder. I have one for each child, filled them with plastic sheet protectors. Each child only has one larger binder; I want to try to keep it this way, since many smaller binders will ultimately take up more room and make it more difficult to see the art we've kept. 

 I also include a small amount of school work in these binders - choosing only the best of the best: About 5 pages a year. The end result is an attractive, practical way to view and preserve my children's art - something we bring out as often as we do our photo albums.


  1. We scan our kids' artwork that fits on the scanner and have made online photo books out of the artwork. Just another idea for these precious keepsakes!

  2. I never thought to make a photo book out of my scans of the kids art. Great idea!