Monday, June 8, 2020

Daily Take Home Folders

At the beginning of the school year I make each student their own daily folder, also known as their "Take Home Folder."
Take Home Folder
Daily Take Home Folders
This folder is a communication devise between home and school.  The folder is brought home every night and is returned to school the very next day.  It houses important information such as school notes, homework, graded work, and monthly classroom newsletters.
Parent Teacher Communication Folder
My student's daily behavior is also noted in their take home folder on the monthly behavior calendar.
Behavior Calendars
At the end of each school day my students mark either a green, yellow, or red dot on the appropriate date on the calendar.  This dot communicates to their parents the behavior color card they earned that day.  If the color yellow or red is marked on their calendar I write a brief description of the negative behavior they displayed.  The purpose of this is to encourage a discussion between parents and their child over the misbehavior.
Monthly Behavior Calendar
Parents are asked to sign or initial each night on the appropriate date on the behavior calendar.  This communicates to me that each student's parents saw their take home folder and the information inside of it.
Take Home Folder Basket
The take home folders are brought home every day and are returned to school the very next day.  Any notes from home, money, homework, etc. is to be placed in the take home folder so I will receive it - because we all know how sometimes things get lost in a child's backpack. LOL
Take Home Folders
I have my students turn in their take home folders into the tub each morning.  When they turn them in they place them in numerical order.  This makes it easy for me to flip through and see who is at school, who forgot to turn their folder in, etc.
Take Home Folder Labels
Here's a peek inside my take home folders!

Here's the steps on how I put together my folders at the beginning of each school year:

Step 1:
I always use plastic brad folders to make the take home folders.  The plastic ones hold up much better than the paper ones.
Making a Take Home Folder
Step 2:
I pick a cover with a different clipart character for each of my students.  I add their name, their student number, and my class information to the cover.  I print each cover and laminate it.
Take Home Folder Assembly
Step 3:
I attach the covers to the front of my folders.  You can use staples, tape, Velco dots, etc. to attach the covers.
Take Home Folder Covers
Step 4:
I add additional pockets to my folders.  I use these plastic pocket sleeves I purchased at Wal-Mart.  I add them to the brads of the folder.
Daily Folder Labels
Step 5:
I use the 1" x 2 5/8" labels to label the behavior calendars and homework pockets.
Take Home Folder Labels
Step 6:
I use the 2" x 4" labels for the graded work pocket.
Graded Work Labels
I go over the labels with clear tape to ensure the labels stay on and do not get damaged.
Step 7:
I place additional important handouts (like our school calendar) in a clear plastic sleeve and add it to the brads of the folder.
School Calendar
Step 8:
I pick out different left and right pocket labels for my folders.  I print, laminate, and cut out the labels.
Left and Right Hand Labels
Take Home Folder Left and Right Hand Labels
Step 9:
I attach the labels to the left and right pockets of the folder by stapling them on.
Daily Folder Labels
Step 10: 
I also add a pencil pouch to the brads of my take home folders for money, small notes, etc.
Inside a Take Home Folder
I take the pencil pouches and plastic sleeves out of each student's folder at the end of the school year so I can reuse them year after year.
Step 11:
 I add the behavior calendar to each student's folder.  The monthly behavior calendar also has school events, classroom events, due dates, test dates, etc. on it as well.  This helps parents easily see what's going on at our school and in our classroom.
Behavior Calendar
Step 12:
I send home these introduction notes the first time I send home the take home folders.  The notes explain what a take home folder is, what is inside the folder, and the guidelines to take care of it.
Take Home Folder Parent Notes
Daily Folder Parent Notes
The folders are then complete and ready to use all year long!
Take Home Folder
You can grab everything you need to make your own Take Home Folder by clicking HERE!
Take Home Folder Covers

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