Today's project is our homeschool area. It doubles as our breakfast area and our storing art supplies area. It also attracts crumbs and unsharpened pencils. It's well-rounded that way.
Before I started, it was a jumble of abandoned curriculum, dog-eared writing books, and squelched dreams. Also it was gross and dusty. The kind of dust with hair and bits of colored pencils in it, not the shiny "internet home stylist" dust you see on the other blogs.
|WARNING: This is not a before picture.|
So: try not to compare yourself to fake others. I don't have a 5 step plan on how to achieve this because I'm terrible about it myself. I can say it feels nice, though, to show you my messy pit of a dining room table instead of making myself feel fancy. I can tell you that much.
Speaking of fancy, here it is, exciting and new:
|Our art teacher at camp had jars for her pencils and I liked the way they looked...|
I didn't know I'd be doing this project until I ran into those pencil-bins at IKEA. I was unprepared to fend them off, and I'm not even sorry. The little s-hooks on the left are perfect for all our memory-work cards. I can already hear myself ordering the boys to grab their cards and practice while I go change a diaper or drink a diet coke or something. The bins lift off the hanging bar and sit level on the table. Isaac in particular will like being in charge of getting those & putting them back.
|The beating heart of our future college applications.|
In case an actual homeschooler is reading this, here is the driving philosophy behind my homeschool gear organization: I want it to be really easy for the boys to put their crap BACK where it goes. It may not look like much, but the square one down on the left is the most important one in this entire room, maybe this entire house. It has three cheap cardboard magazine organizers in it- one for each kid and an extra for my worksheets and stuff (dot to dots, letter tracing) to throw at them when I need a few extra minutes with somebody else.
The boys grab their own books for whatever subject is next, and they can clear the table when they're done. As the school year went on last year, I was surprised to see the boys were pretty good at keeping things in their bins. They ONLY put their own workbooks, writing paper & worksheets in there and it means we (usually) don't have to worry about where the math book went... not a good situation when I'm trying to also make coffee and get the day off to a non-yelling start.
|The hat belonged to Jonathan's grandpa. The jar is full of discarded bee's nests.|
The Boba Fett guy is our clock. He shoots me with a laser when we're late for swimming.
In case you're curious, how about a quick ramble about how we homeschool? We do 3 to 4 hours of schooling with the boys. Since they're still pretty little (1st and 3rd grade), it's been easy to get our main subjects done in that time. Math, writing, reading, grammar, memory work, Bible, Art, and Science. They do swimming for PE and play instruments. We do all that from about 9-12:30, then get ready for swimming or music lessons. One day a week during the school year we go to our homeschool group.
In the afternoons, they have free play time. They often make up elaborate stories together involving Legos and stuffed animals. Pokemon cards are their newest passion. I like for them to be responsible for entertaining themselves and for them to have unscheduled down time on a regular basis. Lately I've even found them reading books in the wild. I've also found them bickering and manipulating one another, but that's just the cluttered side of the table right there.
|Isaac showing Grandpa Mike how to play Pokemon.|
Strangely enough, Isaac won every single game that weekend...
So that's our homeschool space, and an outline of our homeschool day.