As I near the end of our "official" school year, I find myself buried under piles of completed work. And that's not just work from this year. There is also work that's accumulated from the previous two years.
I am not normally a keeper of stuff. However, during the first year of homeschooling, I kept mostly everything. Just in case the neighbors or the authorities came knocking. Then I would be able to say "Look at all we accomplished!" and actually have proof.
Now, as I finish up our third year, I'm more confident in what we are doing. I'm more aware of my rights as a homeschooler and the appropriate action to take if someone does show up at my door. And I know what papers I really need to keep.
So what am I going to keep?
Each kiddo already has a cumulative file that includes, in Blake's and Laina's cases, their public school records, health records and up-to-date immunization records, report cards and attendance sheets that I print from Homeschool Tracker, and their id cards from our homeschool group. A current "school" photo and summary of curriculum for the current year is written on the front of the file.
I think as I go through my boxes I will hang onto a couple of the best samplings of their beginning, middle and end of year work for each subject, tests, and special projects or papers. These I will put in a portfolio, along with field trip reports and book lists for the year. My lesson plans are all input into Homeschool Tracker and are easily accessible if needed.
I think that's it.
As we make our full transition to Charlotte Mason, I will have even less stuff to hang on to. No worksheets, few tests, some projects, and lots of memories. That's the best stuff to have hanging around.