Let me preface this post by saying, you do not need a homeschool room. Sure, it is nice but a good teacher can teach anywhere. We do a lot of reading on the couch and in bed. We spend a lot of time "doing school" outdoors as well. Find what works for your family. If a room won't work or you don't have the space that is OKAY!
I am nesting . . . not really (no more babies right now) but I am prepping for fall. Once upon a time I was a classroom teacher and I just loved getting my classroom ready. I thrive in organized spaces and cannot function when there is clutter. So, when planning our homeschool room my three main goals were:
Let's begin with the video tour and then I will break it down!
Everyone always asks: the paint color is Dark Storm Cloud by Behr
Let's start with my bay window and "poster corner." We use Handwriting Without Tears, so I have their guides on the wall. I also have a basics guide (shapes, coins, months of the year, and days of the week). I have children in primary grades and below, so these are topics we come back to often. When we are covering a unit I use large Post-It paper and stick things on the door or windows if needed but I don't keep those big posters out all the time. It is just too much to focus on for my kids and I.
I get SO many questions about the little table we have. It
is actually an Ikea coffee table (from several years ago, so their colors may be different now). Find the Lack table here! I just added the little Ikea children's chairs to it. They have two sizes and we didn't put in the shelf that normally goes underneath. It has worked really well for ages 2 - 5.
Above is our main working table. We do a LOT of arts and crafts, science experiments, and hands-on learning at this table. It has held up really well. Once upon a time, it was our kitchen table but we no longer had a space for it. The carpet is from Target and it is an indoor/outdoor carpet. I never use strictly indoor carpets with children. They become gross and are so difficult to clean. An outdoor carpet is easier to vacuum and wipe paint off of. Play-Doh is another story (unless you make homemade play-doh - then hot water melts it away). The bulletin boards and whiteboards are from Hobby Lobby. Wait for a good sale and you can grab these guys for less than $30 each. The rolling cart is from Michael's crafts.
The clock is from Target and I used my Cricut, vinyl, and a Cricut marker to make the flower. Don't let the schedule to the right stress you out. That schedule is in play two days a week when I have six children here for group learning.
My rolling cart is one of my most favorite purchases! I normally prep this cart on Sunday evening, so I am ready to grab and go throughout the week. I have it separated into three sections:
Supplies: Art, science, or other hands-on project supplies for the day/week go in this top bin. It helps me stay organized and I grab them and move along.
Activities: Games, puzzles, and hands-on manipulatives go in the second bin. I pull these for the week on average.
Books: These are the read alouds we will do as a family all week. We read them all over the house but I store them here for easy access. They normally correlate with a theme or topic we are studying.
The bulletin board is really basic. I keep our monthly Bible verse and word (example: compassion and a verse we are memorizing), our calendar (from Experience Curriculum- the theme changes each month), and a copy of the Pledge. Not all homeschoolers practice the Pledge of Allegiance but I find it to be patriotic and want my children to know it at a young age. We will move on to the star spangled banner throughout the year. We recite it two to three times a week, not daily.
My homeschool room did NOT have these built-ins last year, but quarantine happened and my husband was home so here they are. I get a lot of questions about these. Here are a few quick tidbits:
The cabinets are kitchen cabinet bases from Lowes
The top is butcher block (unsealed) from Floor and Decor (we cut and sealed it)
The shelves were made by my husband
The lights are actually OUTDOOR lights from Home Depot (looks like Pottery Barn but way cheaper)
The baskets and tins you see in the pictures below are from Hobby Lobby. I like to be able to grab and go. I hate searching through bins of supplies, it feels like a time waster for me. We use the tins for coloring utensils, scissors, tape, glue, and other tools. The magazine files are from Office Depot. Each child has one for math and one for language arts. Their curriculum, workbooks, and games are stored in these magazine files. It makes it easy to grab and get working. The white binders are filled with hands-on games and laminated practice. It allows for easy access. The purple binder is filled with benchmarks and curriculum guides for me.
Some of my favorite non-traditional things to keep on hand are:
Window markers - we practice on the windows and it is so fun
Overhead markers - they work on anything laminated and are easier to clean off (I do NOT use whiteboard markers on anything laminated)
Chalk markers - those are just for me
Tempera paint sticks - they don't make a big mess and dry quickly! They are great for little ones, posters, or just to use if you want to "paint" and don't want a big mess.
This is just a peek inside some of my cabinets and drawers. I also have large clear tubs in the basement to house the play-doh materials, sensory bin materials, and the recyclables I keep for science experiments and projects.
By the way, my room doesn't always look like this. We start the day off with bins and what we want to accomplish and end the day looking like something exploded.
Pretty spaces are great and I love them, but they don't stay pretty long with kids and that is okay. The bigger the mess, the more we learned and the more fun we had!