Tuesday, April 12, 2016

How to Put Together a Homeschool Portfolio - Supplies

This is the first part in a series on how I am putting together our homeschool portfolio for evaluation this year.  This is our first year completing one, and I haven't found a lot of information out there, so I am hoping this is useful to others out there!

While we have been homeschooling for a while, this will be the first year that I will put together a homeschool portfolio. 

I am happy that Maine offers this option when it comes to evaluating the progress of homeschool students.  In Maine we have a few different options, but the main ones are a standardized test or to put together a homeschool portfolio to be reviewed by a Maine licensed teacher.


The scrapbooker in me immediately wanted to do the homeschool portfolio.

As the time gets closer for me to actually put the portfolio together, I am getting a bit more nervous.  Trying to figure out what I should include in a portfolio is slightly overwhelming.  In all honesty, I would like to give someone the box that holds everything we have done this year so far and say go at it!  Of course that isn’t how it works.

What is the first step when creating a homeschool portfolio?

For me the first step is to gather supplies.  There are many ways that you can put together a homeschool portfolio, so if you don’t like my ideas, no big deal, do what works for you!  However, I have been spending a lot of time online trying to find examples of homeschool portfolios, and I have come up empty.  I hope that my ideas help spark some for you!

What supplies will I need?

·       3 Ring Binder
·       Dividers
·       Sheet protectors
·       4x4 picture inserts

Not a very long list!  Obviously this list does not include what I plan to put in the binder as far as school work goes, but these are the basic supplies I will need to put the portfolio together.

I wanted to use a pretty yet durable binder, because I know that we will be keeping this for the length of Emma’s school career.  I love the greenroom binders from Target.  They are pretty, yet functional.  The one I have is 1.5 inches, and I think that will be plenty of space for what I want to include.  As the years go on I will probably have to increase the binder size, but considering Emma is just 7, this one should suffice.

The dividers I picked up also at Target in the dollar spot.  I need the dividers for each of the subject areas required by my state, as well as a few extra sections that I plan to include.


My purpose in getting 4”x4” picture holders is because I tend to take pictures of the kids “doing school” on Instagram.  Often when we are out and about it is easier to snap a picture of something rather than take out a notebook and jot down a bunch of notes.  I love to have these pictures for my own personal albums anyways, so why not include some of them for school.  I tend to tag all of my pictures of the kids homeschool activities with #homeschooling which makes finding the pictures I want relatively easy.  I can upload them right to snapfish from my phone using their app, order and done.  Super easy!

After I gather up all of my supplies, the next step is to figure out how I want to lay everything out, and of course what I plan to include in the portfolio.  I will share those things as I put the portfolio together!  This is just the first step in, what I see as, a longish process.


Do you put together a portfolio of your child’s work from the school year as a keepsake, or as a homeschool portfolio for review?  I would love to see what your supplies are!

18 comments:

  1. My mom shoulda done this, instead of trying to keep every paper I brought home from school and gave to her xD A few years after I was out of highschool and my dad moved out of the house we lived in for that time, and I went to visit him he handed me a plastic grocery bag full of school work he had randomly found that had been forgotten about. Full of stuff from 4th grade. No idea why it was saved or where it was hiding! So, I gave it to my mom, since she was the one holding on to it anyway, ha. No idea what she's done with it (but hopefully tossed it...though I doubt that somehow!).
    And, really, anything to avoid the stupid standardized testing that the states love to use. Nothing like spending a month or two reviewing things just for a test that for some reason dictates what you know or don't know! ;) I mean, uh, I didn't mind them personally (and it's practice for the SAT or whatever the heck test they're using now), but they were still stupid :P

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  2. Our state doesn't require portfolio but reading your post I decided that I want to make one. Scrapbooking is my passion and every year I put a book for each kid with the projects they did that year, but I haven't considered making one to record other aspects of schooling (besides projects). I am really excited about putting it together. I know it would be a bit overwhelming to decide what I want to include....

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  3. My SIL was just telling me she wanted to start homeschooling her daughter, but had no idea where to start. I will be sending this her way.

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  4. I honestly don't know how you keep on top of everything, maybe your fab organizational skills. My kids go to main stream and I can't keep up.

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  5. A portfolio is a great organizing tool regardless if you are required to provide one or not. Great post for a useful tool.

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  6. This is such a good way to stay on top of homeschooling. I love using some of these elements in out house.

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  7. Your doing a fantastic job, especially since you are able to keep on top of everything with ease. Great portfolio the pictures are a nice touch!

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  8. Such a great idea. You make it look so easy.

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  9. I love doing scrapbook type stuff like this. It's always so unique and cute. I really love the fox & hedgehog images ! Great post xx felinebykatsaris.com

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  10. I've really been looking into homeschooling lately for my youngest. With this common core stuff, I'm not so sure I can handle public schools any longer. This is a great resource for those wanting help to start.

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  11. This is amazing. Love your DIY project. I might do something like this too!

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  12. I'm not a mom but bravo on this project. the pictures of your kiddos are adorable.

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  13. I'd love to consider homeschooling in the future, just not sure about my time-commitments yet. Thanks for the info!

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  14. Oooo this is definitely fab for all the home schooling parents out there! Being organized in anything in life always leads to success

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  15. These are some great tips for putting together a homeschool portfolio. It's a great way to celebrate the work that kids do on a daily basis.

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  16. I've just begun to create a travel portfolio to refer back to the happy memories. I'm definetely one for organisation and at home crafts to. Love your design and ideas!

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  17. This is great information for anyone who is thinking of homeschooling or struggling to get it together

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  18. Love the paper design, and I think its a great idea. My kids are grwon but I try to find ways for the to create, even if its helping me paint.

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