Our New Homeschool Room: Take a Tour!
I wrote a post months ago lamenting that I had finally found a perfect set up for our homeschool room…and then we were suddenly moving.
The move turned out to be SUCH a blessing, but there was a lot that needed to be done to get the homeschool room up and running again.
And of course, I was worried about all the things:
Was everything going to fit the same way in the new house?
Would it be as functional?
Was there a dedicated space for a homeschool room?
Or would I have to give up a common area (living room, dining room, kitchen) in order to make space for my classroom?
Would the kids like the new space, or would it be a fight to get them in the schoolroom every day?
I had of course seen the inside of the new house, but I just didn’t know how it was all going to fit until the furniture was there and we were unpacking boxes.
Let’s Talk About the Old Homeschool Room First
My old homeschool room was tucked into an offshoot of my living room:
The location was perfect because it got a lot of sunlight, I could see the younger kids playing in the living room, the kitchen was very close for quick snacks, and the nearby dining room provided another table surface when the kids were working on separate projects.
It was our first classroom and we really loved it!
There were some drawbacks though.
- It was small. I worried about where all the school things were going to go as my girls got bigger and we needed more space.
- There was limited wall space for 3 kids. We were always looking for places to display art work, large maps, timelines, etc. without it looking too cluttered or messy.
Even with the drawbacks, I couldn’t imagine another house having a better set up for us.
Thankfully I was Wrong!
Our new homeschool room turned out to be a huge step up in just about every way.
It took some time and rearranging, but it all eventually came together.
I did end up sacrificing half of our living room though to make it possible.
Here is a panoramic picture I took while standing on our living room couch:
Let’s Talk Homeschool Room Location Real Quick
Yes, I did give up part of my living room, but there were 2 other areas I could have put our classroom.
One was an extra bedroom and the other was an extra family room/den area.
I decided against those because both of them were out of the way from the common areas of the house.
I didn’t want to have to jump over the hurdle of getting my kids into a classroom every day.
The schoolroom is in the middle of our home where my kids are already spending their time anyways.
As you look at the above picture, the living room is behind me, the dining room is through the door left of my whiteboard, and the kitchen is through the door to the right.
My kids are always within a few steps of the classroom!
When they run off to play during breaks, it is no hassle for me to get them to come back.
I can also keep an eye on my younger kids and make snacks without ever being a few steps from the classroom.
Back to the Homeschool Room Tour!
As you can see, the above classroom picture is a little distorted because it’s panoramic, so I decided to take you on a tour of each area going from left to right:
First up is our dedicated library book bookcases and our world map that came with our geography curriculum this year.
I love that these bookcases make it easier for my kids to see the front of books, grab them, and put them away.
We usually get so many library books every week, that I found it was much easier to keep track of them if everyone knew they “lived” in their own bookcases.
The world map is hung a bit low for an adult to look at, but just perfect for my kids.
Here I have my bulletin board, homeschool supply bookcase, clock, and our book bins with curriculum library books.
I had to take all the kids’ projects down when we moved and the bulletin board looked rather empty when we moved in.
I decided to cover it with the “letter of the week” cards from our kindergarten curriculum. This worked out really well because I couldn’t use my ABC border from the old classroom due to where the doorways are placed.
I organized my homeschool bookcase so that kindergarten things are on the left, 3rd grade things are on the right, and preschool things are on the bottom shelf.
This way the kids know where to look for their own stuff.
The stack of books in the middle is where I put my supplies for “morning time” with the girls.
Morning Time usually includes curriculum books, library books, our children’s Bible, and our read-aloud book.
Having them prepped this way makes it really easy to grab and go in the morning.
The bins labeled “books” on either side of the bookcase hold library books that are from my kindergarten and 3rd grader’s book list for that week.
I use the clock to have my 3rd grader practice telling time every couple of days. With digital clocks being everywhere these days, I have found I need to be really intentional with reviewing this with her or the skill seems to get rusty.
You would be surprised how hard it is to find a pretty wall clock that shows the hour, minute, and seconds. If I ever find another one, I will replace this one in a minute (no pun intended:)
The rest of the white space is a bit bare, but I left it that way intentionally.
I have learned that each year brings new history timelines, projects, maps, etc. and they all need wall space.
Leaving it blank allows us time and space to grow and not be distracted with too much clutter.
Hey everybody, I just wanted to pop back in here a year later and share that we finally updated our bookcase!
We had outgrown our little 2 shelf one and it was absolutely time to find something more practical for my growing homeschool.
This cube storage system was perfect for us!
Plenty of space for everything, bright, colorful, and it cost about 25% of what we paid for the original bookcase.
Oh, and no trips to IKEA required!
That is my kind of upgrade!
Main Classroom Area:
Here is the main part of our classroom. You can see the magnetic whiteboard, our classroom table and chairs (just regular folding table and chairs), and our school supply organizers.
I LOVE our magnetic whiteboard. It is my favorite thing that I have bought for my schoolroom. I love that it holds markers, our routine cards, and any other papers I want up there.
I always post our “letter of the week” on the board so it’s visible.
I usually hide the card on Monday mornings and tell the kids I can’t find it. They first have to figure out which letter is missing from the bulletin board so they know what they’re looking for.
Whoever finds the card first gets a prize from my treasure box, so it’s usually a fun way to kick off a Monday for my little ones!
The clear organizers are my second favorite thing I’ve bought for the classroom.
I love that that you can easily see what you’re grabbing without dumping everything out, my kids can easily share supplies, AND they can easily put them away without trying to cram them back into a box.
For those of you zooming in to see my routine cards, I thought I’d give you a close-up. This is everything my 3rd grader will have to do today.
After morning time, she and I usually go through what’s written on the board and make sure she understands what is expected from her.
I break them up in chunks to make it easier to understand quickly.
The top portion is Bible and we usually complete that during Morning Time.
The middle portion is independent work that my 3rd grader is expected to complete on her own. I am available if she needs me, but I try not to hover.
The bottom portion is the stuff that she and I do together.
I like having the notes to the side for a quick reference for both of us. No having to glance through teacher’s manuals to remember what book, page, or assignment is scheduled.
***Is that something you could use in your homeschool? Check out the bottom of this post for my free printable routine cards!
This is our interactive calendar for our kindergartner and preschooler.
It is very useful for helping them understand the days of the week, changing months, and how many days till a birthday/holiday.
I also really like the little slots for putting up the season and the day’s weather.
A lot of math curriculums will have kids graph the weather and this is a great way to remind kids to keep track of it.
This is the last stop on our tour – Our Reading Nook!
We originally bought this reading nook for one of the kid’s rooms years ago, but we found it worked really well in the classroom.
It holds all of our books – no library books.
I wish the seat was bigger, but it holds a good amount of books, has withstood a lot of abuse from my kids, and adds a nice touch to the classroom that encourages our kids to read.
Recap + Free Printable
I hope you enjoyed your tour of our new homeschool room!
Hopefully, it gave you some ideas but also showed you how simple and functional a classroom can be in your own house.
You don’t need a whole separate room or a ton of money to set up a homeschool room that works for you and your kids.
Are you still interested in getting your hands on a set of routine cards??
You can download them for free when you subscribe to The Simple Homeschooler (no spam ever!) today!
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Good tips. Not homeschooling per se but our school is hybrid 2 days in and 3 days home. Some of your ideas we’ve already done since March. Others I thought were great even outside of homeschooling like the chore list. Thanks. You can be sure some of these suggestions will be making it to our house in the next few weeks! Jenn
That’s great to hear, Jenn! Good luck with your school year!
I am new to homeschooling and am trying to learn all that I can!
That’s great, Jessica! Welcome to the tribe! Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.