2013 - 2014 Schoolroom
We are blessed to have a finished basement that serves as our homeschool classroom and our family/playroom. In years past I have tried doing school out of a cabinet in our kitchen/dining room but it never worked out well. I have found that I really need a dedicated space to homeschool my children. So, here is our homeschool classroom for the upcoming school year.
This is the half of our finished basement that serves as our homeschool classroom. On one end there are built in cabinets with a counter and a mini frig. The original intent of this space was for entertaining purposes, however, I have found it functions better for us as a part of our homeschool room. I use the cabinets for storing arts and craft supplies, the counter is home to our printer and grade/file/copy box and the frig is full of water bottles and healthy snacks to help get us through our day.
The giant dry erase board was a new addition to our classroom this year. It is simply a piece of hardboard (also called shower board) from Lowes. It functions as a dry erase surface quite well. The best part is that the entire sheet was only $13! I priced similar sized dry erase boards from office supply stores and I realized that I needed to come up with something else because there was no way that I was spending hundreds of dollars on a dry erase board. So, after a bit of googling I found this idea and ran with it. My hubby trimmed it out for me and I added a cute little bunting to give it flair.
The bookshelves are also a recent addition. I used to have a large Ikea bookshelf along this wall but it took up too much space. So, I found some plans for smaller bookcases and asked my hubby to build them for me. Luckily he is quite talented when it comes to building things so he banged these out in a weekend! Having two smaller shelves enabled me to have room for my large dry erase board. I sanded and stained the shelves myself, which is an accomplishment I am quite proud of!
The shelves are filled with our homeschool binders (Geography, Science, Literature, etc...), books that we use for reference, easy reader books and past curriculum books. I have our calendar, school rules, sign language reference sheet and address/phone info hanging on the sides. I topped each shelf with a framed print that I found via Pinterest and added a cute little globe and a candy jar for fun.
This a better view of the back of our classroom. We have a world map, a blank USA map that we will fill in over the course of the year and our animal board to fill in as we study various animals throughout the year.
On the wall opposite the book shelves and dry erase board are my childrens' desks. I scored these from another homeschooler for a grand total of $10 per desk! The girls love having their own space to go off and work at. Each girl has a folder in their desk that has a variety of activities to keep them busy if they find themselves with time on their hands. So, if I am busy working with one of their sisters and they finish up their current work, they simply pull something from their folder to occupy their time until I am available to set them up with their next subject.
I also use this wall to hang up any posters that I think will help them over the course of the year. New this year I also incorporated a word wall. I found these cute labels on Pinterest and used four sheets of poster board to create my word wall. Now when the girls ask me how to spell a word, we sound it out together and add it to our word wall. Next time they get stuck they can check the wall to see if the word is already there or not.
I use an old entertainment system to hold our curriculum and more arts and craft supplies. I used letter trays to organize the girls' curriculum/workbooks. My oldest daughter, Annie, has her books on the top shelf and Megan and Lily have their curriculum housed in the lower portion. My son's preschool activities/fine motor activities are on top of the cabinet.
This is a view of the other half of our schoolroom/family room/playroom. We have two large couches and a large chair/ottoman, which are perfect for snuggling up on when we do reading. We also have a small closet on this side of the room that houses the majority of the toys. I try to be disciplined about having the kids pick up and put away the toys each night so that when we are ready to start school the next day we aren't tripping over toys. The French doors lead out to our backyard and playground area.
So, that's our schoolroom for this year! I hope you enjoyed the little tour. If you have any specific questions about any of it just let me know and I will be happy to answer them.