Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Organize Your Homeschool Room

Throughout all the years of homeschooling our learning space or homeschool room has taken many different sizes and shapes! Back when all three girls were homeschooling, we dedicated our entire basement to our learning space.  For a time when we had two homeschoolers, we dedicated our dining room to our homeschool room.  Now that we have just one fourth grader learning at home, our needs have changed considerably.  Last year, we had simplified down to just using the one or two shelves, and a big comfy chair or the dining table to do our work.  I loved the simplicity of that.  Half way through the year we ended up getting our current homeschool desk, but still were in the dining room.   I'm a huge advocate of having an "atmosphere" conducive to learning.  What that means to me has changed over the years however.  You can read about my recent thoughts on that by clicking here.  This year, we have what would be considered our formal living room as our dedicated homeschool space.   It's given us room to spread out a bit compared to last year, yet still lets the room function well for the entire family. 

 These great bookshelves from Ikea hold not only our school books, but most of our entire family library as well.  My camera equipment, along with photo albums, and other books are stored in the cabinets below. 
 This cozy little corner of our homeschool room is where I can be found during most morning hours.  This is where our favorite part of the day happens - morning basket time.   Oh homeschool mommas, if you haven't discovered the wonderful, tender, rich together learning time that is the morning basket please do a quick google search!  Morning time, morning basket, circle time - it has many names, but oh how it can change the tone and atmosphere of your homeschool day.  Our morning basket has actually turned into a morning shelf.  That lower shelf right by my chair is where we keep all our morning basket activities.  

The brown filing cabinet beside my chair serves as my desk and charging station for the laptops.  I keep all of my supplies organized in the drawers, and the handy organizer sitting on top of the cabinet contains my planner, our favorite memory work book, our scripture memory cards, schedules and more. 
 One of my favorite decorative pieces in our learning room is this vintage desk that belonged to my husband when he was in first grade.  Those books on the desk were from his childhood too, with his old Bible right on top. 
 This desk from Ikea has worked GREAT for our needs.  We bought the two base pieces separately and then bought a separate table top and simply used velcro command adhesives to attach the table top to the bases.  The side with the cabinet door is like a locker for Boo where she keeps all her daily school books, the other side with the drawers is great for organizing all her school supplies. 
 Daily school books inside the locker side of the desk cabinet base.  You can read all about our curriculum here. 

 Boo's desk drawers with organized school supplies...
 Our most used learning manipulatives are handy right in these drawers too. 

Can you believe those cute cursive letters on the wall came from the Dollar Tree?  Right in the middle of Boo's desk is an organizer that holds her history cards, bible cards, latin vocabulary cards, and our map stickers. 
Hanging a map right above the school desk has been just perfect for Boo.  We use removable markable opaque stickers (each subject a different color) for marking the spot on the map as we come across them in our different readings.  This is a great living way to naturally learn geography throughout any subject.  You would be surprised how many times you might encounter a "place" in your studies.  We always stop and find it on the maps above her desk. 
 That dark blank looking cubby just above our morning basket shelf is our charging station.  There is a power strip hidden under the felted mold that lets us lay our phones right on that shelf at night to charge.  It's also a great way to make sure all kiddos leave their devices out of their rooms overnight. 

 One of my favorite homeschool resources is this My Book House book collection.  My mother-in-law owns this set from when she was a child, my husband grew up reading them, and now her grandchildren are using them.  I found this set on Ebay for a steal! I'm so excited to have our very own set now.  You can read about how to incorporate them into your homeschool with this great post by my friend Pam at Ed Snapshots.  

 A super fantastic way to organize your homeschool day is with the simple use of a spiral notebook.  This easy trick has made my little type A student super happy as she giddily checks off her little boxes as she goes through her day. She knows exactly what needs to happen each day, she can use her own time management skills, and I can see at a glance what has been done and what may need to be transferred over to the next day.  It's a GREAT way to keep track of exactly what gets done and our reviewer loves being able to see EXACTLY what happens each day.  If something happens that wasn't scheduled, we can just jot it down and we suddenly have a great record keeping system.  Super easy, super effective, super organized! I just write this up each evening or (usually) each morning right before our school day begins. 

  Up above Boo's desk in the dark cabinets is where we keep our extra school supplies, paper and notebooks.  In the cabinet on the other side is our household office supplies.

I hope you enjoyed a peek at our homeschool room and were inspired with some ideas on how to get your own homeschool supplies organized! 

Hip Homeschool Moms


Pam Barnhill said...

I LOVE your room. So neat and tidy (sigh). Thanks for linking to my My Bookhouse Post.