Where is information your family needs to access on a regular basis? Here are tips on how to organize family information into a 3-ring Family Binder. Make important information easy to access by all family members, caregivers or household members. Don’t keep all of this information to yourself or allow it to clutter up your household! Make sure others know where to find important information about your family.
Here are the steps to organize family information and create your Family Binder:
Figure out what information is useful for your family to easily access. This information may be found on the front of your refrigerator, the bulletin board in your kitchen, the counter, or wherever papers end up. Sort them out into categories such as:
- Important contact information: Cell phone numbers for family members, doctors, dentist, orthodontist, pharmacy, and emergency contacts such as grandparents or neighbors. Other useful family information can be school names, addresses, phone numbers, attendance procedures, and bus pick-up and drop-off times and locations.
- School information: Procedures, teacher and class information, lunch menus, class and concert schedules, field trip information. Separate by child and by school.
- Sports information: Schedules for practices and games, team rosters, class schedules. Separate by sport and by child.
- Extra-curricular activities
- Community information such as city or village contact numbers, and library and park district information
- Religious organization information
Use a good-quality 3-hole punch. This one is my favorite: Swingline 3-Hole Punch. Use a sturdy 3-ring binder and dividers with tabs for each section.
Find a binder that fits with your décor, or decorate the front with a photo of your family. Label the binder so everyone can find it.
Label each divider tab with a category. Put the family information accessed most often in front. Have a tab for each school for general information, and a separate tab for each child’s school information.
Compile all important contact information into one document and place in a sheet protector. Use this as the first page of the binder before the dividers.
As new papers come in, add them to the binder. Periodically, check for outdated or obsolete information and pull it out and discard.
Keep the binder in a designated place. Make sure your family and other caregivers know where to find it and what it contains.
Modify the binder as your family changes by adding or changing the labels on the dividers. Keep it up to date. This can be crucial if one of the heads of household is unexpectedly away from home.
Creating a Family Binder to organize family information helps decrease the clutter in your home and makes your family information easy to access by anyone your household!