How to manage a toddler’s art gallery

Riley brings home projects and activities from preschool almost daily. We’ve seen it all: coloring, painting, penguins, and cotton poofs. Some of it is good. Some of it, let’s be honest, isn’t. But she did it, so that makes it special. Special enough to display for a time? Yes, definitely. Special enough to take a picture of. Sure. Special enough to keep for all eternity in an ever-growing artwork archive? Certain items, yes. The vast majority, no.

So I tackle the accumulation of projects and papers with a process that involves three main steps: display, capture, and keep/toss. Here’s how it works:

Display –

As Riley brings home projects, up they go on the two corkboards we have up on a wall in her room. Over a month or two months, the corkboards fill up with penguins, bears, drawings, and hand-drawn reindeer.

Capture –

Once the boards are full, I take a picture of the collage. I also zoom in on a few really cool pieces. Then down they come.

Keep/Toss –

Then it is decision time. Most of the projects get tossed at this point, but a few (like a certain hand-drawn reindeer) get put in her bin. The boards are cleared off again, ready for more artwork.

Down the road, I want to put together a photo album of all her project collages. I also want to put the saved projects in sheet protectors and put them together in a binder. Those might be summer projects…or projects for two summers from now… 🙂

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