Creating a portfolio

Creating portfolios to store student artwork might a difficult job but it’s necessary to have your classroom to run smoothly. First, you have to determine if you’re going to create individual student portfolios or for an entire class. You might ask yourself, how do you organize your classes by table number or colors? Also, do you see the same students multiple times per week or just once? Keeping all these issues in mind one of the easiest ways to organize artwork would be by grouping portfolios by the day of the week. This way, it can help you to keep projects and classes straight.

There are many routes to go to create portfolios as a whole group or for individual students. One way that works best for me is to organize portfolios is by student color-coded tables, red, orange, yellow, green, blue and violet. I decided to purchase six different colored pieces of  22″ x 28″ 6-Ply Railroad Board. This makes it quick and easy for you or students to pass out in progress.

Then, take the 22″ x 28″ piece of Railroad board and folded it in half, this will create the beginning pocket of the portfolio. Once folded in half, create and apply a label on how you plan to organize artwork, individually or my table. I used a 3-1/3″ x 4″ inch label that has six labels per sheet, the perfect amount for six tables.

If planning on keeping your portfolios for a while, go the extra step and laminate them to ensure they will hold up.

One folded in half, either tape or staples the sides together. I prefer clear packing tape it’s strong and durable. After the sides are taped, it can easily hold 9”x12” and 12”x18” projects that make up a majority of the lesson that I teach.

Passing out portfolios

Every morning, I take out the portfolios for my classes that I have and place them in a large big book storage box. I found this is the perfect size since its used for oversized picture and activity books.

Then, I labeled the compartments by each grade making it easy for students to pass out artwork.

Then, I attached the labels for grades K-5 to the storage container. This makes it extremely fast and easy for me to get portfolios out and ready for each class for that day.

Storing the portfolios

Storing portfolios full of student art can be tricky too if you don’t have anywhere to put them. Not every art room has a spot available to place them and it can get tricky when trying to stack them on top of one another. One way I store them is on a stacked shelf. I put each teacher’s name on the self and students place their colored portfolio in the correct spot.