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I've been browsing Pinterest looking for ideas to organize and set up our homeschool room and I just have to ask. Do all of your homeschool rooms really look like those rooms on Pinterest?? Like a design magazine would want to interview you? Seriously, I just want some realistic, down to earth organizational advice. And I wouldn't mind some practical "decorating" advice either, like what do you have hanging on your walls? (Besides buntings, decorative twinkle lights, large typography letters, color coordinated everything...) 😜 I am converting my small dining room, but we still have to eat in there. I have a closet with 4 shelves and MAYBE room for a small bookshelf.

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Well, I don't look at Pinterest, but my homeschooling room is my dining room, and yes, we eat in here, too. But it does look like we do school. No getting around that.

On the walls I have posters and help charts. I've got all the parts of speech and I've had Latin grammar charts up as well. They are down right now for repairs and additions. Currently I have weather posters and mineral posters up. And a volcano cut-away chart. One wall has my whiteboard, two small bookshelves for the encyclopedias and reference books and library books. All the homeschooling materials (papers, books, notebooks, art stuff, maps, etc are stored in this giant white pantry. I hauled it out of the kitchen about two years ago and it has been in the dining room ever since. Best thing I ever had for storing stuff out of the way. I'd have another one just like it in the corner if I could. Great storage space!

 

And no, nothing matches. :laugh: Basically, you use the space you have. I do really like having all the curriculum and materials hidden away at the end of the day, though.

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Our dining room is our school room too.  We have the dining room table (60"x 36") and also a smaller kid size table (48"x30") with a couple of kid-sized chairs.  On the walls we have a medium sized white board (36"x24"), a huge map of the world, a smaller map of the US, a cork board where random things get pegged up, a weekly schedule, a monthly calendar, and a small white board with the day's to-do list.  Way up by the ceiling I have a strip with the lower case alphabet and the numbers 1 through 12.  Opening into the dining room is a small under-stairs closet, which is where I keep most of our school stuff: manipulatives, pencil sharpener, text books, etc. 

 

I want to be better organized though, and the closet under the stairs is getting really full, so I plan to redo the room this summer.  I'm thinking some wall shelves, a bigger white board, and maybe a cabinet or something.  There's an Ikea near me and they have some amazing ways of fitting a lot into small spaces while somehow making it look good.  I went there this weekend and just drooled all through their showrooms, lol.

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We have a school room for the first time this year and it has made a huge difference in our productivity. We have a mish-mash of furniture so it's not the perfectly coordinated rooms you see on Pinterest. An old kitchen table and chairs, school desks from a private school that shut down, one white bookshelf and one natural wood bookshelf, etc. I'd love for it to be prettier, but it is very functional and we love having it! 

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My house was built in '49 and had a bunch of additions put on it. It was pretty tiny before a couple of rooms were added. You have to walk through a bathroom to get to our "school room" which I think someone intended to be a big bedroom. It's 13x20 and is the biggest room we have.

 

One side of it has bins of toys, a computer desk, a tv, a couch, a lazy boy chair, and a treadmill all jammed in there.

 

The other side has three desks and a bunch of bookcases. We school on the desk/bookcase side. The walls are filled with a few decorations I've collected over the years that don't really match and a map and a whiteboard.

 

The desks are; 1 antique school desk I've had since I was 5 and 2 school desks that I got for $5 each a number of years ago. My desk is wood and opens at the top. Their desks are that hard plastic-y material that school desks are and they have cubby holes in the front. The desks are arranged in a sort of cube shape so we're all looking at each other.

 

Desks work for us. That way the boys aren't complaining that he's "on my siiiiide!" Or getting the other boy's stuff "in my waaaay!" There is a clear line of whose space is whose so there are no arguments.

 

They can write at the desk or use clipboards if they want to write somewhere else. If we're all working together, we're usually at the desks so we can easily communicate.

 

There are two closets in the room that I converted into tiny little offices for each boy. There's enough room for a chair and a drop down table top that a boy can use as a desk. Each boy can close the door behind him so he has complete privacy if he wants. (I adore the little offices.)

 

Each boy has a shelf on the big bookcase to stuff all their books/binders. I have a shelf for my books/binders.

 

Sometimes we sit at the desks, sometimes we flop on the couch, sometimes they're playing with Legos or action figures on the floor while I'm somewhere else reading to them.

 

It's almost always a bit of a mess in there. I'm trying to clean it up slowly, but we're in there so often that things get messed up very quickly. Very quickly.

 

No magazine would be coming to our house, unless they're looking for Before pictures.

 

It works really, really well for us.

Edited by Garga
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No, it doesn't. We moved the desks out to the kitchen this year (because that's where I usually am and heaven forbid I not be paying attention at all times).

 

The kids' classroom only toys are in there...."organized" and their Legos. And most of my teaching material. It's set up just like a classroom, wall maps and all. But we only used it like that for two months, lol.

 

Oh and the boy's snake is in there.

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We have just (And by just I mean, I hung the clock on Sunday LOL) finished redoing our office/front room into a school room. I think it looks pretty nice. Probably not pinterest worthy but nice :)

 

My kids are older (rising 6th and 10th graders) so we have less little 'stuff' (no math manipulatives, art supplies live where they've always lived -- in a kitchen cabinet, etc) so it's more office-y. It's also the room you walk into our house through so it needed to be tidy and inviting.

 

It looks like this:

https://www.flickr.com/gp/21340327@N02/3Y8991

 

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I can't figure out how to post pictures on the WTM, so I posted a few pictures of my school room on my blog.  Here it is.

 

The school room is good and messy.  I did that on purpose so you guys would feel really good about your clean (or not so clean) houses.  Ha!  Just kidding.  I hate cleaning and tidying.  Honestly though, this room is only a good 1/2 hour from being tidy and a good 3 hours from being completely decluttered.  But who has 3 hours??  Not until summer vacation.

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I love our "homeschool room". When we were looking for a house, my DH and I agreed that the best/largest room in the house will be our living room, as in the room where we spend the most of our time. The house is 1921 Mediterranean, and the living room is lovely, albeit a little dark. It has two huge desks (one for DH, one for me and 2 kids), plus a "library wall" with three built-in "library desk" one for each of us. It also has a huge fireplace and two loveseats for when we have guests or just want to cuddle and read something together. The loveseats and the fireplace between them is the only thing you see from the entrance, so it is good, too :) Is it a pinterest material? Not sure.  If I spend those 3 hours Garga mentioned, I would be proud to show it, but I am not sure it would be everyone's cup of tea, As I said, it is pretty dark, with black/darkbrown furniture and not child-friendly looking at all. But we love it :)

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I can't figure out how to post pictures on the WTM, so I posted a few pictures of my school room on my blog.  Here it is.

 

The school room is good and messy.  I did that on purpose so you guys would feel really good about your clean (or not so clean) houses.  Ha!  Just kidding.  I hate cleaning and tidying.  Honestly though, this room is only a good 1/2 hour from being tidy and a good 3 hours from being completely decluttered.  But who has 3 hours??  Not until summer vacation.

 

That looks like my house.   :thumbup1:

 

 

My school space looks nothing like Pinterest, aka Modern Ladies Home and Garden.

 

I have 2 desks.  Both were freebies.  One of them is a cast off office desk that is in bad shape, but works very well for us.  Then I have the old kitchen table in use as a desk.  We have lots of shelving filled with books.  We have random bins filled with stacks of papers and workbooks and other books and rulers and protractors and baby doll clothes.

 

One half of the room is school, they other is a play area for the 3yo.  And the laundry room is right off.  It's work space, and it reflects as much.

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We do school in the living room. We have a bulletin board with the day's schedule (a pocket chart) and a calendar on which we put a sticker when we've completed school, along with a couple of curriculum-related items. Our school table is a public-school surplus purchase, one of those little trapezoid ones with adjustable legs, and DS and I sit side by side in non-matching castoff chairs. A couple of lamps on nearby surfaces are helpful, and there's a built-in bookcase, part of which I use as a standing desk. We have a Melissa and Doug easel tucked in a corner.

All this is behind the couch, and then we also have some baskets/library bags/piles of books in front of the couch, which is where we sit to read. DS's electric keyboard is nearby, along with my ProClick, an inflatable globe with no proper home, and some wall timelines. The top of a bookcase features balance bears (and their balance, in lovely primary-colored plastic) and some graduated cylinders.

 

Definitely not Pinnable here. :)

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We have a playroom that also stores our current school stuff and we do school at the kitchen table so I can do things while kids work.

 

I like to keep things as minimal as I can, so our house is generally uncluttered. My mind goes loopy in too much disorder. Only current-use school stuff is out in each child's work bin, etc, the rest is stored in Expedit cubes in the basement. And I like to decorate, but no one has ever suggested Pinterest when they've seen our space. :-P

 

It helps that I love a schoolhouse-industrial look, so that's the 'decor'. A wall map and globe in the playroom, jars of art supplies on the dining room side table, a wall painted with chalkboard paint in the kitchen. And bookshelves in every room... but it was like that before homeschooling. Now I just need to build more bookshelves.

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Our schoolroom/playroom is the centrally located formal dining room in a house that was built in 1910. We've built a whole wall of bookshelves, have toy bins along another wall, and along the others we have our piano and play kitchen - the rest of the wall space is taken up with doorways leading to the rest of the house. We have one swing rocker (my reading aloud chair), and alot of school is done at the kitchen table (through a walkway arch) or on the playroom rug (roads map). As the kiddos get older, the toy bins will be replaced with kitchen cabinets with a countertop for the ginea pig cage. Most of the room is wide open for playing, board games, pogo sticking, inside picnics, crab walking races, and whatever else they come up with. Since it's the room we walk through to get anywhere else in the house, they know to not block the walking path, but there is usually quiye a lots of books and toys to put away before bed. It's definitely not Pinterest-worthy, but neither is the rest of my house. It's lived in and comfortable though.

Edited by greenbeanmama
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Schoolroom

Every solid inch of wall space in our schoolroom (it would be considered a den in real estate speak) is covered in 7 ft. tall wooden book shelves, a wooden file drawer (3 drawers) with a globe on top of it, and a piano.  The room is filled with a glider rocker and wooden side table, a couch, a recliner, a wooden coffee table and an area rug in the middle of it all.  The windows are tall and narrow and flood the vaulted ceiling room with light.  It's on the east side of the house. There's a whiteboard tucked in the corner behind the recliner when not in use.

 

Physical Organization

 

The homeschool book shelves are organized by era and subject. 

The eras are for history are broken into Ancients, Medieval, Early Modern and Late Modern.  Two book shelves have matched adjustable shelves and are assigned an era.  All the related books (history spines, non-fiction, literature and science related to the era) are grouped by region in each era in the Ancients and Medieval.  Early Modern and Late Modern are more strictly chronological with fewer regional groupings.

The rest are grouped by subject: Logic, Language Arts and Latin/Greek Roots, Spelling, Math and manipulatives, Science that isn't era related, etc. Then we have a several thousand books that would fall into various categories including some living books, great books, personal interest books, children's literature, professional development, etc. in our schoolroom, the loft/gameroom and each of the 5 bedrooms.

Assignment Organization

 

We do the 36 week file folder system in our file drawers so back before my older two graduated they each had a file drawer and were each assigned 36 filed folders labeled 1-36 in a different color. Oldest had yellow, middle had red, youngest had purple. All summer I plan and prep all of their school and put all of their assignments for each week each file.  I have a master chart of what each kid was doing in each subject each week because life happens. That's in my planner along with answer keys, our annual schedule, allowance charts and such. 

All the assignments are either copied or the workbooks/study guides are disassembled and in the appropriate file by the first day of school. Staples cuts the spines off books and 3 hole punches entire books for cheap. An assigned reading list is printed out and out in each file.  Subjects in the file folders include history, language arts, logic, geography, art and science.
 

Math, phonics, Latin/Greek Roots, and spelling are do the next thing once the current thing is mastered.  

3 ring binders with each subject are labeled and placed on a shelf.  Finished work goes in those. I'm not one to answer a child's question immediately. I expect them to look back in that subject's file folder to answer some of their question on their own before I go spoon feeding them answers. Keeping the finished work on hand does that and also makes a nice handy way to show someone who is genuinely interested what a child is learning.
 

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I can't figure out how to post pictures on the WTM, so I posted a few pictures of my school room on my blog.  Here it is.

 

The school room is good and messy.  I did that on purpose so you guys would feel really good about your clean (or not so clean) houses.  Ha!  Just kidding.  I hate cleaning and tidying.  Honestly though, this room is only a good 1/2 hour from being tidy and a good 3 hours from being completely decluttered.  But who has 3 hours??  Not until summer vacation.

 

 

I think I love you.  ;)

 

At the very least, I love your pictures. 

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Mine is nice, but not a totally coordinated Pinteresty room.  I feel pleased that I made it work with furniture I have and not a huge budget, but I really like my schoolroom a lot.

 

Walls: three are cream with light dusty blue trim; one is the light dusty blue with cream trim.  The color breaks up the neutral a bit without being overwhelming.

 

Furniture: it's eclectic, but I put tablecloths on our school table and the table where I store their individual bins, which looks a little nicer than the plastic tables.

 

Lighting: Four windows (with cream lace sheers), three sconces on the blue wall, and two LED lights on the ceiling, which have a dimmer switch so I can adjust the light level.  It's ended up being a nice, generally pretty bright room.

 

Decorations on the walls: The blue wall has a framed whiteboard, and two framed maps (not expensive, but the framing really adds a nice touch), plus a nature print that I can swap out every so often.  Other walls have a couple of other nature pictures and a spot where I can hang picture study prints and some other posters in inexpensive frames.  There's one big spot where I put additional maps or charts (this year it has maps of ancient lands), and this year I have the Veritas Press cards lined up around the top of the wall as a visual timeline border (which I love, and we refer to it often).  Oh, and a clothesline for hanging artwork.

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Our school room is nice enough if it is picked up, but it rarely is. It is a basement room that runs the length of the house. There is a pool table on one end that I wish we had gotten rid of. We have two small school desks that Ds9 and Dd6 could use, but they don't. The four kids work on a large wooden table I got for $50 at a garage sale. I have a desk. Those are in the middle of the room. The other end has two couches and a chair facing a tv. I have a wall of bookshelves behind on of the couches. Shorter bookcases form a base for the tv. It is cosy and comfortable, but a messy basement room.

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Our homeschool room is the dining room. I have two cheap Walmart shelves (that I originally bought for my classroom when I was a school teacher) along the wall. One shelf for each kid for curriculum. Above them is a cork board I randomly pin things to. Then we have random bookshelves around the house filled with books. So no...nowhere near a Pinterest room! I lobe those in theory cause they just look so darn pretty but not a reality for us!

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We tried having a separate room for school when my oldest was in K. I thought it would be wonderful. We both lasted less than a week before we ran for the living room. From then on we started schooling in the main part of the house. One thing I hated about working in a B and M school was that feeling of being locked away from the world. So we are much happier now. My boys sometimes work outside, or in their beds, or on the couch but most of our work is done at the same table we eat on. One bonus to that is that we clean up our school stuff regularly which prevents those mysterious disappearing acts some of my youngest's things often do.

Edited by UCF612
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Our school/play room looks nice but no one would pin it. I love the color, a light aqua. I have a large IKEA expedite bookshelf and a large white board on one wall. A U.S. wall map is above the desks on another wall. The other decorations are a mix of cute and practical. We enjoy being in there and use it.

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Our house has an unusual layout - it was a split level that was remodeled. The bottom floor has the kids' bedrooms and the kitchen, and the top floor has the great room (LR/DR), master bedroom, hall bath, and school room (2nd bedroom). Since it is right off the living room and across from the bathroom, it doesn't feel inconvenient to be in here. Occasionally we do work at the dining table or on the couch, but most of the time I stay in the school room and the boys take turns working with me here. My boys share a bedroom, and my older son has a workstation in his bedroom (under his loft bed) where he does his independent work while I do school with the younger son. Then when I work with the older, the younger one goes into the shared bedroom and listens to audiobooks while he plays with Legos, or he reads, or works on programming, or whatever.

 

We built shelves along the inside of the closet, and out-of-use curricula is stored by subject in banker's boxes. I have two large bookcases that store in-use curricula and reference books. Another bookcase stores science kits, Tinker Crates, and Robotics stuff (and there is another shelf of science kits in the closet). I have a small desk for my laptop, and a medium sized kitchen table in the middle of the room. On one end of the table I have a wooden bin for paper as well as a Desk Apprentice. I have yet another cube shelf unit with school games in it, a rolling cart for my TMs that has a projector on top, and a filing cabinet. I also have a cart with the sewing machines and sewing supplies since we are supposed to be working on Home Ec. 

 

I have been homeschooling for 7 years and have accumulated so much stuff that I will never again be able to homeschool in a dining room (at least not unless I have a whole resource room).

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I can't figure out how to post pictures on the WTM, so I posted a few pictures of my school room on my blog.  Here it is.

 

The school room is good and messy.  I did that on purpose so you guys would feel really good about your clean (or not so clean) houses.  Ha!  Just kidding.  I hate cleaning and tidying.  Honestly though, this room is only a good 1/2 hour from being tidy and a good 3 hours from being completely decluttered.  But who has 3 hours??  Not until summer vacation.

:001_wub:

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When our school room was our dining room, I kept our larger flat items stored behind furniture--the large magnetic white board

for instance.  I also purchased a big laminated map that could be folded up.

 

I found a book shelf with a glass door that allowed me storage, but didn't make things look cluttered.  We kept the globe on top of it and I thought it looked nice. We also turned an old tv cabinet into school storage.

 

The main thing you need to decide is if you want to see your school stuff or not.  I didn't want to see it when our school room was our dining room.  When we turned a bedroom into a school room, it started to look like a school room--white boards, chalk boards, maps, handwriting posters, open bookshelves, etc.

 

Here are some pictures from days of old...

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And here is now
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I just want to stress that we have been homeschooling for years now, I have six kids, and i did not run out and buy all this stuff on one day.  It has been slowly gathered and all of the furnishings have been second hand or repurposed.  

 

Edited by Stellalarella
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I thought your title was, "Homeschool Rum".

 

Perhaps if you drink some of that, you wouldn't care so much about how your homeschool room is decorated. :p

Bahahaha! Love it!

 

Thank you all for your responses, all of your rooms sound and look great! I'm sure it will be trial and error for us, but I was just curious how other people set up. In one photo I saw a hook with headphones hanging on it. Great idea! And I LOVE those little closet offices! Wish I could do something like that. And it definitely sounds like I need to invest in more bookshelves. I've been collecting homeschool materials and I thought I was doing well having a shelf and a half filled up. ;) (my kids each have their own bookshelves filled with pleasure reading books). Thanks for sharing, all!

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At our old house, we did school in the dining room. I am NOT one who wants homeschooling to take over the house, so everything was cleared off the table after school was completed, and there was nothing homeschool related hanging on the walls. We had a bookshelf for storing manipulative and curricula in there and that's it.

 

We've since moved to a new home and I have a dedicated homeschool room. It is NOT pinterest worthy. DH custom designed and made my blackboards, to the width and height I wanted them. I purchased storage units, which I use as bookshelves, and bolted them to the wall. On our walls, we have the blackboards, the history timeline, our rosary wall, and our picture study review. Other than that, we have the large floor pillows (which the kids LOVE), a reading chair, a table and chairs, and another bookshelf that is dedicated to manipulatives and other supplies.

 

 

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We recently moved to a new state and have an entirely new set-up for our homeschool room. We now use a back bedroom in our basement as the school room. I actually love having the separate space for homeschooling that is away from the rest of the house. (That way our mess can hide in that back room!) 

I have two book shelves - one for our read alouds, history books, science books, and science supplies. The other is for our notebooks, math manips, art supplies, and other extras. In the middle is my reading chair where I can sit and read to the kids. 

We have a big IKEA table in the middle of the room that has banks of drawers instead of legs. I keep our curriculum in the drawers. This has been awesome!

I also have a computer desk in one corner where my kids can work independently. 

The room also has a giant closet that is full of extra books, supplies, and curriculum that we aren't currently using. 

My room isn't Pinterest-worth I'm sure but it is very functional this year. It's been perfect!

 

And I have no idea how to upload pics to the forum so I'll have to link to my blog post with pics of our room. 

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AimeeM I love that rosary wall! Do you do one bead or decade a day? How does that work?

Decade a day (when we can). I made it so that the younger boys could put their hands on each bead as we say it (they break real rosaries - even "kid rosaries!). I color-coordinated the beads with the prayers (and the paper color backgrounds), too, so that it would be easier for them to follow along.

Edited by AimeeM
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I do not look at Pinterest, but I am fairly CERTAIN my rooms would never get pinned.   :laugh:

 

I don't have much wall space in our schoolroom--one wall is completely swallowed by a dry erase board.  Another has a huge bulletin board on it (my brother-in-law owns a dry erase board/bulletin board company).  Another area of that wall (which also has a big window) has a framed map on it.  And then the other two walls are built-in bookcases/cabinets.  

 

I will try to post a few photos here: 

bookcases

part of the table (the table is never this neat...it's always laden with some books, papers, and a sewing project)

 

I don't have any photos of my desk/whiteboard area.  It contains desk-y stuff.  

 

I keep our schoolbooks on the bookcases, but the current reads I keep in a big African basket next to our sofa (not in this room).  The table has pewter cups I use for pens, I use a milk glass vase for a bunch of colored pencils....

 

what other organizational needs do you have?  What is the problem area?  Mostly books...papers...crafty stuff...?  Sometimes it's easier to give specific advice to a specific need rather than general!

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pehp, "what other organizational needs do you have?  What is the problem area?  Mostly books...papers...crafty stuff...?  Sometimes it's easier to give specific advice to a specific need rather than general!"

 

My organizational need is that I have almost no space! My dining room table is about the size of my dining room, you have to practically walk sideways around the chairs. There is either a window or a door on each wall. I have one shallow closet with some shelves in it. My other need is that I have no idea what I'm doing and don't even know what materials are "must haves" to try to narrow down how best to use my space. I saw someone post in another thread that each kid has a milk crate with their materials in them. I could fit a couple of milk crates on the floor of my closet, I like that idea... stuff like that.

 

​Edited to say that I accidentally posted the original post with an account that I wasn't planning on using and just unintentionally posted this reply with the account that I had wanted to use. (I'm Aimee63071)

Edited by WhirlyBirds
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We do not have a homeschool room.  We work in 3 main rooms, depending on what we're doing.  Child sized table for writing activities- dining room. Low table with shelves and comfortable seating for hands on work - living room.  Art - enclosed porch.

 

Our organizing comes from what is best for us.  We don't have the room, or desire, for a dedicated school room.  Spreading things out into places we already use is best in our home, and lets me organize only a few things at a time.  We have bookcases for current work in the living room.  Each has a cubby in it for a subject's worth of work.  They're tucked behind doors so it looks neat and orderly when not in use, but inside I use locker shelves to give us a bit more room without stacking things up.  The shelves under the coffee table hold math manipulatives because they're in such constant use that I don't see the point of putting them fully away (and on that, Dollar Tree has small craft containers right now with 12 sections that are perfect for those little pieces!).  Art supplies stay on the art table in a caddy.  Again, not worth putting in boxes and pulling them out every day.  We keep a small caddy of crayons and pencils in the dining room for other work.  Scissors are kept in all three rooms, same with rulers. 

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pehp, "what other organizational needs do you have?  What is the problem area?  Mostly books...papers...crafty stuff...?  Sometimes it's easier to give specific advice to a specific need rather than general!"

 

My organizational need is that I have almost no space! My dining room table is about the size of my dining room, you have to practically walk sideways around the chairs. There is either a window or a door on each wall. I have one shallow closet with some shelves in it. My other need is that I have no idea what I'm doing and don't even know what materials are "must haves" to try to narrow down how best to use my space. I saw someone post in another thread that each kid has a milk crate with their materials in them. I could fit a couple of milk crates on the floor of my closet, I like that idea... stuff like that.

 

​Edited to say that I accidentally posted the original post with an account that I wasn't planning on using and just unintentionally posted this reply with the account that I had wanted to use. (I'm Aimee63071)

 

If the closet in there is the only place you have that small people, if you have them, can't get into, I would use that for any materials that are very expensive or very messy.  I have one little cabinet that has a toddler-proof lock, and it holds printer ink, manipulatives, and dry erase markers.

 

I use the wall white board for writing vocabulary for geography and details for picture and composer study.  Not essential.  Before I had that one, I just used small lap sized white boards, and I still use those for math.

 

Milk crates for each kid's materials sound good.  Target has a wire metal bin that has several slots, and I have one of those for each of my big kids.  They sit on a side table, but I don't know that I'd use them if I were moving them a lot, because I'm not sure if the bottoms would hold up.  Milk crates would work better for that, I think -- take them out of the closet, set them beside each child's chair each morning, put them back in the closet when you're done.  

 

Maybe a milk crate or small rubbermaid tote that holds scissors, dry erase markers, and other supplies?  Something you can pull out as needed and then put back in the closet.  I prefer small plastic pencil boxes for each child, rather than a communal caddy of supplies, but that's partly because I have a toddler (who will dump a jar of pencils all over the place, but he'll leave the big kids' boxes alone because he has his Own Special Box of crayons) and partly because my kids take their work all over the house.

 

Do you have storage space in another room?  My not-currently-used books live on an upstairs shelf.  I wouldn't want to get them from there every day, but it's a great place for storing stuff that's waiting for an upcoming year.

 

If you have some storage room in another room, you could get a rolling cart or shelf and use it to hold reference materials (like the atlas), any group books, and supplies, and just roll it in every morning.

 

I'd honestly wait and see what you end up wishing you had, before buying too much.  I set up the room we use as our schoolroom, hmm, six or seven years ago?  My oldest was still pretty young.  And I've changed the room and its components around a few times.  It's been pretty stable for the past three or four years, so last summer, we painted it.  It can take a while to get a feel for what YOU need and want, so I'd go minimal and make notes as you wish you had something.

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Nooooo. Our homeschool room is our dining room. In actuality, we push books and experiments aside to eat our dinner (when DH is not home, when he is he prefers to actually set the table... :huh: ).

 

I find pinterest a good jumping off point. I have to click out of it however when I start to get the feeling of discontentment and find myself comparing my reality to someone else's crafted vision. I just repeat "comparison is the thief of joy" to myself over and over. It usually works.

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I don't Pintrest, so I have no idea. But our school room was our family room. The center piece was a couch with a huge white board on the wall behind it. On one side was a set of shelves known as my "teacher shelves". On the other side was a stack of cubes, two per child. One cube had drawers, the other open to hold books. On the other side of the cubes was a table, the "science table". It was used for labs and any other large projects. Past that on the side wall was another set of shelves with science supplies.

 

There is another set of shelves that started off as books and over the years became a couple shelves of books and a couples shelves of old curriculum, future curriculum, and portfolios. Both my kids have bookshelves in their rooms too.

 

I didn't homeschool very small kids or I would have had a better table for us to all sit around, but our school room worked great for us and I do think it looked good too. :)

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I actually prefer the pictures with a little mess and a lot of clutter. 

 

In one of the homeschooling books I read, the author talked about a little bit of clutter was actually Better than to have everything put away.   Example, You buy a crystal making kit.   If you shelve it away, the kids will never use it.   If you insist, they might not be in the mood and learning is lessened when they go through the motions.    BUT, if you put the kit on the coffee table, it might sit there for awhile, but then one day the kids will decide Crystal Making sounds like a good idea and proceed with enthusiasm.   Learning is maximized with enthusiasm. 

 

My only suggestion.  If you want to keep kids in the same room, and at least one of your kids is a horizontal reader, then include a couch.   By horizontal reader, I mean someone that would much rather read in bed or on a couch.  

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pehp, "what other organizational needs do you have?  What is the problem area?  Mostly books...papers...crafty stuff...?  Sometimes it's easier to give specific advice to a specific need rather than general!"

 

My organizational need is that I have almost no space! My dining room table is about the size of my dining room, you have to practically walk sideways around the chairs. There is either a window or a door on each wall. I have one shallow closet with some shelves in it. My other need is that I have no idea what I'm doing and don't even know what materials are "must haves" to try to narrow down how best to use my space. I saw someone post in another thread that each kid has a milk crate with their materials in them. I could fit a couple of milk crates on the floor of my closet, I like that idea... stuff like that.

 

​Edited to say that I accidentally posted the original post with an account that I wasn't planning on using and just unintentionally posted this reply with the account that I had wanted to use. (I'm Aimee63071)

 

Okay! So, my educational methods and philosophy could not be ANY farther away from hers, but I remember reading Joyce Swann  years ago.  She homeschooled her 10 children and they did not have a dedicated room.  She had a box (I think a banker's box) for each child.  In that box, the child's materials for homeschool were stored...EVERYTHING...books, papers, pencils, crayons, etc.  They took their boxes to the table each morning and worked, and when they were finished they took the boxes and put them in their bedroom closets (genius alert). I think a box would be better than a crate w/ gaps/holes simply b/c it could contain any loose random stuff that would fall down.  In the real world, loose random stuff is always falling down. 

 

I totally do not do this, but it seemed like a simple, easy, inexpensive way to deal with having no dedicated room.  

 

If you do a lot of whole family learning (I do), this becomes less useful, but you could modify it to have a box for all (say) science supplies for the year.  I have a large basket for all our current read-alouds with both kids.  I think the key is to contain stuff, and to keep the containment system simple and easy to understand, implement, and maintain.  I think magazines like Real Simple actually complicate this stuff!

 

I also think the best way to figure out what your must haves are is just to go about your teaching life for a month or so, and figure out what you really need to have accessible and 'out' and what you can keep stored away in a closet or drawer b/c you only need it occasionally.  My own opinion is that we generally need less stuff accessible than we think we do--at least that has been my observation as we've homeschooled.  So, try it out and then decide what you need.  You cannot do it "wrong" so experimentation is your friend!!!  

 

 

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Nothing like Pinterest.

 

I use a corner of the living room to store HE stuff with a long low table for storage, a bookcase, and a small table that my partner has added a top that can fold up and down to create a long table for work or crafts or eating. Behind the small table I file a pair of whiteboards and under the table I store some extra books and stuff that we're not currently using. We also have tins of pencils that wonder around the house...and the chair next to this has board games the kids can use on their own under it with older games on top of the tall bookcase. 

 

On the long storage table for each child has a expanding folder and a clip board where I keep their individual stuff. Next to that is a few sets of plastic drawers for smaller equipment: one drawer for craft stuff, one for maths stuff, one for things we use on our whiteboards, one has binoculars and similar stuff, one ha phonogram cards and conversation game cards, top has microscope and slides. The table and a couple cardboard boxes for bigger equipment like the clocks and one box for the I See Sam readers. The small fold up table has two shelves - one I use to keep various types of paper and the top is for daily teaching books and mini lap whiteboard. The bookshelves has a shelf for older fiction, one for nonfiction we want regular access to, a shelf for picture books an board books, and one for story books. It has a drawer I hide things in an a low shelf I put comics and Horrible Maths, Horrible Science, and Horrible Geography books I find in here on though most are upstairs. There is a bookcase upstairs just outside the bedrooms we keep the activity and other book for kids. 

 

The only thing we have on the wall is a small pacific centered map and a History of England timeline we got ages back from I don't know where. We have a family tree and atlantic centered map upstairs outside of the kids room and an evolution tree thing currently on the door of the second reception door that is damaged and I'm too nervous to move yet for fear of ripping it further. I have lots of folder posters that I should really put up...

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Here is our school storage room. 

organization-1-500x375.jpg

I have two more bookcases in the corner by the piano.  The blue boxes store equipment based on subject - 3 dedicated to science alone - and also house stored/not in current use curriculum.  The magazine boxes, color-coded by student, contains current curriculum by subject - when the boys put them away properly, that is.  This was taken on the first day of school last year. It hasn't looked this good since, lol. 

Schooling takes place at the kitchen table with my laptop and a corner organizer which holds supplies such as paper, pencils, printer ink, etc.  This pic shows a temp table set up for projects with the kitchen table and organizer in the background. 

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I have learned to embrace the chaos that is homeschooling and relinquished the dream of an organized and tidy home.

 

 

Edited by J&JMom
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I just finished our schoolroom.  It's been in a weird addition, bonus room that I just couldn't make work.  I tried painting, rearranging everything, etc.  Then I decided to paint EVERYTHING - trim, molding, doors, walls, and ceiling.  Then got new carpet.  Then I rearranged and now it totally works :) I big puffy heart love my blue doors. It does look like this all time (a little too cluttered but I have no closets or anything), but only because 1) I have one child and 2) he messes up every other room in the house instead. 

One side is my craft side but doubles as the computer/science place.  I can move the computer onto a chair if I need to do some big fabric cutting. The laundry closet is also down here so I can fold while he's doing independent work.  The science supplies are all upstairs in the kitchen.

 

School side:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxEwXa33n9P5LTlUZF9ZTXhNbVVlT2liMXhmWXIxOEczYUtN/view?usp=sharing

Craft side: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxEwXa33n9P5VDY0ZWQ3dEV2ZlhqWHNnRUlTdUwtZ1ZObXlF/view?usp=sharing

Just down from the kitchen/dining room: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxEwXa33n9P5TnFPQlVNWU1COFB2V3lxR3U2dVNCZFJjUnNr/view?usp=sharing

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I can't figure out how to post pictures on the WTM, so I posted a few pictures of my school room on my blog.  Here it is.

 

The school room is good and messy.  I did that on purpose so you guys would feel really good about your clean (or not so clean) houses.  Ha!  Just kidding.  I hate cleaning and tidying.  Honestly though, this room is only a good 1/2 hour from being tidy and a good 3 hours from being completely decluttered.  But who has 3 hours??  Not until summer vacation.

 

Garga, I just had to say that I have been laughing and laughing, reading your blog. You are hilarious, and made my day with your fantastic sense of humor (I'm having to rest today).

 

The "Spork, Fat Cat, Shrimp Fried Rice" post is a hoot! Thanks for writing it. Why don't you link to your blog in your sig line? It's a great blog!

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DEFINITELY NOT but I think that's okay :) What has helped us stay organized is having designated desks, wall decals and a mini chalk board - everything is easy to move room to room which is sometimes necessary but it always feels like our "homeschool room" whatever room we choose to be in! My favorite are our wall decals from Mona MELisa - there are others too but they help make the room look like an educational space for learning. If you are interested you can look at one of the ones we bought a few months ago here (and did I mentioned LOVE?) Goodluck!

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Garga, I just had to say that I have been laughing and laughing, reading your blog. You are hilarious, and made my day with your fantastic sense of humor (I'm having to rest today).

 

The "Spork, Fat Cat, Shrimp Fried Rice" post is a hoot! Thanks for writing it. Why don't you link to your blog in your sig line? It's a great blog!

Oh, man, that Spork one *was* funny! I'd forgotten about that one. :).

 

I don't link it because I don't actively blog anymore. I suppose I could link it just for fun. The ages of the kids are way off, but the stories are still fun to read.

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