5 Things In My School Room I Couldn’t Live Without

We are one month into our third year of homeschooling and I finally got my homeschool room the way I want it.

I love the way it looks and its super functional for our 3rd grader, kindergartener, and preschooler.

And we just found out we’re moving in a month.

Sigh.

We are very excited about the new house…but now everything has to be torn down, boxed up, moved, and reassembled in a new place.

We are probably going to have to take about 2 weeks off of school in order for me to maintain my sanity.

On the bright side, I immediately thought of all the benefits of homeschool during a move: No stressful drop off/pick up, lunches to pack, school/teacher changes, or homework/projects to keep up with. Woohoo!

I do have the task of finding the perfect spot for our new homeschool room though.  And putting it all back together in a way that works for us.

There are some things we could do without while all the boxes are being unpacked…my laminator, bulletin board, and other things are all really nice to have, but not truly essential.

Aside from the obvious things (curriculum, pencils, paper, etc.), there are 5 things that we just cannot do school without.

Top 5 Homeschool Room Essentials

1. Reading Nook

Reading Nook - Homeschool Room Essential

Our kids do not realize it, but this reading nook is the heart of our classroom.

These bookcases overflowing with books and the cozy seat to curl up in have helped my kids learn so much!

I don’t think I could overemphasize how awesome it has been to have this as part of our school room.

Just check out the amazing benefits we’ve found:

  • It shows our kids that reading is important and has value
  • It makes books really easy to grab
  • It is safer than a traditional bookcase that could fall over
  • Keeps all the books in one place, so they’re not stacked up all over the house.
  • The sling bookcases make it much easier for my younger kids to put away the books when they’re done
  • My kids have developed a much higher interest in reading and books
  • They have increased curiosity and ask more questions
  • It has decreased whining for more screen time
  • My younger 2 kids are now showing signs of reading readiness earlier than I had expected
  • My oldest is reading above grade level now

As we move to our new house, it will be a high priority to find the perfect place for these bookcases.

You can check out the Bookcase with Reading Nook and the Sling Bookshelf in the Amazon links below to start building your own reading nook!

2. Library Books

homeschoolers at the library

If you have a reading nook…then you’ll you need books!

And they can get really expensive when you start buying them. They are also super heavy for those of us who move often.

For those reasons, we are borderline obsessed with our local library.

We take weekly trips there and I let the kids roam the kids section. They come to me with handfuls and handfuls of books that I stuff into an enormous Ikea bag.

We have exceeded the limit of 50 checkouts at once several times, so I had my oldest daughter get a library card just in case.

This weekly infusion of new books keeps my kids engaged in reading, excited to hear new stories, and primed for learning.

Our library is so important to us that when we were house hunting to move, proximity to the library was actually a factor for me!

If you don’t have a library card, get one! It is a priceless asset to any homeschool.

3. Magnetic White Board

Magnetic White Board - Homeschool Room Essential

I will not be able to teach a single thing until my white board is screwed onto the wall in our new house.

I found out pretty quickly that my teaching style requires me to draw everything out to explain it….and blessedly my kids are visual learners!

I constantly use it to explain science concepts, break down math problems, and sound out words.

There is something about making everything big on a white board that really works for all of us.

Just this week, I used it to teach how the scale of a map works. We measured room and furniture dimensions, and then drew a map of my kids’ room on the white board. I had to use the board because computer paper would have been too small.

My oldest also loves to mix things up and take her spelling tests by writing the words out on the whiteboard. My younger 2 love to draw pictures on it while I read aloud.

I love the magnetic quality that holds my favorite markers, our daily routine cards, and papers we use often.

The only thing I don’t like about our white board is that I didn’t buy one twice as big.

Trust me, you will always wish it was bigger.

4. School Supply Organizers

School Supply Organizers - Homeschool Room Essential

Frankly, I’m embarrassed that I did not buy these organizers from the very beginning.

I started out only homeschooling one kid, so I was able to manage with just a pencil holder and stuffing art supplies in a cabinet.

I broke down and bought these organizers when I started homeschooling 3rd grade, kindergarten, and preschool.

A pencil holder pouch was no longer going to cut it.

The minute they came out of the box , and I loaded them up with supplies – I fell in love with them!

What a concept, to have everything right in front of you!

I’m sure I was just late to the party on buying these, but let me share with you all the reasons they are my new favorite thing:

  • They are clear, so my kids (and me!) can see everything and grab only what they need.
  • No more dumping out whole boxes of crayons or other art supplies all over the table.
  • My kids can pick up after themselves so much easier. Putting crayons and markers in this organizer is so much faster than trying to fit them all back in a box.
  • It has made it much easier for my kids to share supplies since it sits very nicely in the middle of the table.
  • The carrying handle makes it really easy for even my preschooler to take it to another room if she needs to.
  • I am no longer constantly looking for a sharpened pencil when I need one.
  • No more pausing a lesson to grab glue sticks, scissors, tape, etc. Every time I leave the room, I know I have to work at it to get their attention when I come back. All I have to do now is grab the organizer I need!

If you are homeschooling elementary level kids – these organizers are essential to keep you sane. You’re welcome!

5. Bookcase

A bookcase organized for the first day of My Father's World teaching

I fought buying a bookcase for the first two years I homeschooled.

I was trying really hard to do a classroom on a budget (I actually wrote a post about it here – How to Set Up a  Homeschool Room on a Budget) to show that you really don’t need that much for a successful homeschool.

That is true….but my homeschool had evolved quite a bit since then.

So, if you have room in your budget and more than one child to homeschool, then this would be at the top of my list!

When I just had my little 1st grader to homeschool, I was able to slide by with just putting her school books on a small shelf in the classroom.

When she was in second grade, the books were probably too bulky – they fell off the shelf more than once.

At the end of that year, I finally graduated our school room to a 2 shelf bookcase because I knew it was time.

I organized it with kindergarten supplies to the left, 3rd grade to the right, and preschool fun on the bottom shelf.

I literally have no idea how we would be able to homeschool this year without a dedicated bookcase.

My house would be a disaster of curriculum chaos without it. Seriously.

All of the bouncing between students, transitioning subjects, assigning independent work – It just wouldn’t be possible without something to hold the school books we need for that week.

This bookcase was an Amazon buy and was so heavy when it arrived that I could barely get it inside my door!

I put it together myself without an issues.

Highly recommend this bookcase to store all your new shiny curriculum!

***Organization tip: Even though I have the space, I still only pull out the books we are using that week. Most curriculum sets come with a huge box of books that are used during the whole year. You don’t need all that clutter. Just pull out what you need for the week and your space will be much more tidy and easy to navigate for you and your kids.

Recap for Homeschool Room Essentials

In our 3rd year of homeschooling, I have learned a lot about what is really important for our homeschool and what really isn't. It was a challenge to narrow it down, but check out our top 5 list of must have homeschool room essentials!

There you have it!

Our homeschool room in our new house will not be functional until the reading nook, library books, magnetic white board, school supply organizers, and bookcase are all present and accounted for.

What is essential for you?

Your laminator? Bulletin board? Laptop? Printer?

I would love to hear what essentials make your homeschool room go round! Please share them in the comments!

Want to make sure you remember this for later? Pin it to your favorite pinterest board and share with your friends and followers!

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