Top view of binders.

Top view of binders.

How often do you find awesome projects on Pintrest and think, “who has time for that?” Or, “I would never think of that!” That’s what inspired me to create these super simple busy binders! I used items I found at dollar stores. No need to use up my ink to print off a ton of pages. No need to laminate. These are re-usable, inexpensive and require very little time to make.

Materials for busy binder.

Materials for busy binder.

I found activity books at the Dollar Tree. (Target  has similar books in their dollar section). I picked up some colorful 3 ring binders at Big Lots for .90 cents each along with matching zipper pouches for $1.00 each. I reused some plastic page protectors and dry erase markers I found at home. So, each binder cost around $2.90. (I made 4).

Zipper pouch to always have pens on hand.

Zipper pouch to always have pens on hand.

The zipper pouch in the front of each binder holds dry erase markers for easy storage. I especially like the dry erase markers with the felt tipped eraser caps. This way the girls can erase their marks on their own if necessary.

Be sure to use dry erase markers.

Be sure to use dry erase markers.

Use book cover as first page in binder.

Use book cover as first page in binder.

The first page of the binder holds the cover of the activity book. If you want to get fancy, buy a binder that includes a front and back clear view pocket. Place the front cover of the activity book in the front clear view pocket and the back cover of the activity book in the back clear view pocket. The clear view binders run about $3-$4 each. The plastic page protector is my cheater version.

Insert individual pages in pockets.

Insert individual pages in pockets.

The following pages include activity sheets I detached from the book. I inserted one page per plastic sleeve.

Page protectors make it easy to erase use again.

Page protectors make it easy to erase use again.

Now the girls can re-use the pages as many times as they’d like. I simply erase when they are finished, or encourage them to clean with a paper towel before putting the binder away. If you forget to erase and the ink dries, a baby wipe cleans the page super quick!

Inside binder.

Inside binder.

I keep the binders on a shelf for easy toddler access.

Binders on shelf.

Binders on shelf.

I have an open shelf area at the end of our counter that I keep busy activities for the girls to grab and play with any time they like. This has saved me during phone calls, while chatting with other adults and that rat race called dinner hour.

Open access to activity shelf.

Open access to activity shelf.

I assembled all 4 binders in less than 20 minutes! The materials are easy to find, inexpensive and assemble quickly.No printing! No coloring! No laminating!

 

What are some busy projects you use to occupy little ones?

 

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