Currently I have a checklist in each child’s bedroom to help with the morning routine. It’s just an 8 1/2 x 11 piece of white paper, slipped inside a sheet protector, with their daily routines typed on each side (“School Today” on one side and “No School Today” on the other). The sheet protector also works as a dry erase surface.
TIP: You don’t have to purchase a dry erase board in order to create a dry erase surface. Most smooth, non-porous surfaces will work with dry or wet erase markers (test a small area first if you’re not sure). I like to use sheet protectors for informal use; a glass front picture frame with white or light colored paper inside is more attractive and can double as home décor.
This system is working well for us, but I’d like to step up a bit. I’d especially like to add a shared family calendar so that the kids can start to understand how their schedules affect the whole family, not just themselves. And so that they can better understand the concept of time (our 8 year old has Down Syndrome and is a very visual learner, so I think this is going to be especially helpful for him).
I’d also like to have a place to write notes and hang important school papers without making it too cluttered or complicated.
So… I’ve been hunting for ideas to create the perfect “command center” to fit our family’s lifestyle. I plan to make my own so that it can be customized to our family’s needs (and of course it will hopefully be less expensive than buying one pre-made).
Below are some of the most inspiring ideas that I’ve found.
I like components from each of the following Children’s Homework Message Center, Family Bulletin Board, Strategic Organization and Storage, Kids Organizing Bulletin Board, Magnetic Command Center, and New Year, New Organization:
I can always count on Pottery Barn for beautiful DIY inspiration, even if most of their products are a bit out of my price range. Check out the Pottery Barn Daily System:
And I really like the masculine look of this Woodgrain Magnetic Memo Board:
When I finally decide on the layout for our board, I also plan to make custom magnets (or pushpins if we use a cork board). Here’s a great tutorial for DIY Fridge Magnets and Pushpins:
If that’s too complicated, here’s one that will take 10 minutes or less: glue a magnet or thumbtack to the back of just about any small object like buttons, stones, game pieces, dice, hooks, legos or other small toys. Check out these Sticks and Stones Magnets, Button Tacks, Lego Magnets, and Flair Magnets:
Do you have a system that is working well for your family? PLEASE SHARE!
While I’m a master at brainstorming ideas, I’m not always great at executing them to completion… I am hoping to have our family’s board completed before the end of September, so I’ll be sure to share photos when it’s ready (yikes, Monday is already October 1 – better give me another week to finish this)!