I'm a sentimentalist and a pack rat. My son's first scribbles on a piece of paper with a marker? Saved. My daughter's first barely-decipherable scrawl of her name? Saved. Pretty much every card my husband has ever sent me in almost 14 years together? Saved.
However, now I have a school age kid. And holy deforestation, the amount of paper that comes home with her over the course of a school year probably weighs more than she does. Awards for this, a worksheet on that, "books" she colored and stapled. I have had to become seriously hard-hearted about what to save and where to put it.
As the school year draws to a close, most of us are dealing with that avalanche of paper. Scrapbookers probably have cute ways to memorialize their child's work over the year; I'm not, but I still like the idea of having her kindergarten and first grade accomplishments for her when she's an adult.
My method for what to save is as follows: Keep whatever represents creative work or original thinking, which means worksheets and art projects where everyone is expected to do the same things in the same way go straight into recycling. Those gems I have saved go in one of those expandable files (you can find pretty snazzy ones). If I'm feeling especially on top of things, I'll give each month its own pocket. More often than not, I'm just shoving things in there willy-nilly.
I'm finding that the older my kids get, the more I treasure these little artifacts. What do you keep of your kid's school stuff and what do you pitch...and what do you DO with it all?