School is just around the corner, and we can’t wait!  We will start our homeschool the first week of August…that’s NEXT Monday!  I can hardly believe it!  With all the chaos and instability the kids (and I) have had over the last few months with the move, the changes in plans, the house-hunting trip and cross-country vacation, settling into the new house, etc., we have greatly anticipated the start of our school year.  With it comes structure, schedules, stability, routine, and we all thrive on that! 

To help prepare, much like last year we have set up our “Operation Center”–for lack of a better name.  Interestingly, a year after I posted about this (which wound up being featured on an organizing tips website ), it is still my #1 post to be pulled up and viewed in random searches! 

Our "Operation Center" condensed to a standard-sized bulletin board.

On this board, I have posted the following items:

  • Our daily schedule in the top left corner
  • My personal daily chore list in the top right corner
  • Under that is a small monthly calendar.  I have all my chores divided into individual days and weeks to help ensure most items around the house get done at least once each month.  The calendar helps me keep track, at a glance, as to which week of the month we are on. 
  • Under the calendar is the older kids’ Chorepacks, within easy reach.
  • Under the Chorepacks is our “If-Then” chart to aid with disciplinary issues that may arise during the day.
  • In the bottom left corner is our new “Extra Chore” chart which I will post about another day.  Essentially, this is extra, out-of-the-ordinary chores the kids can do to earn money.

This bulletin board is located in an area that is convenient, easy to see and remember, and easily accessible to everyone.  The items that are more for my use are on the top, while items the children need are located on the bottom. 

We have been weaning ourselves into using it, as it is more detailed than the way we had it set up last year.  For someone like me, though, who is not naturally self-disciplined and is easily side-tracked and distracted, this center is a tremendous help for keeping me on track and organized!