So it’s back to school season. Maybe you have already been homeschooling and not much has changed for you, or you are officially choosing to do homeschool this year because of COVID or other reasons. Or maybe you didn’t choose homeschool, but it’s an inevitable reality as counties are choosing to go fully remote.
Whatever your reasoning or circumstances, you can still be prepared and have your home set up for the best possible learning environment for your kids. And you can do this even if you do not have a designated homeschooling room in the house, a desk in every bedroom or a ton of room to work with.
Recently, my client and I set up a home-schooling closet in her home. She didn’t have a designated homeschooling room and the kids ended up working on their homework in the dining room anyways. So we decluttered her hall closet which was close to the living and dining room; making it very accessible and easy to clean up homeschooling stuff when done.
Here are a couple tips to consider when planning out your unconventional homeschooling space!
1. Don't fight what comes naturally!
- Where do you naturally gravitate toward when you are doing homeschooling or your kids are working on homework?
- Are your kids great at working on their own in their rooms?
- Do you feel like they need more parental supervision?
- Do you feel like you just end up cramming everyone in the kitchen?
Keep your space, your family’s routines and your kid’s personalities in mind!
2. Get the necessary supplies!
- How many supplies are really necessary?
- Are you kids mostly working on their laptops and tablets?
- What do you already have in your home?
Before you go to Target and buy all the things, consider your homeschooling program and how your kids learn best. If your boys learn best outside and prefer exploring outdoors to painting at home, you do not need to splurge for those professional paints that seems like a must-have. Be realistic with how much you really need to buy.
3. Work with whatchu got!
- How much space do you have?
- Do you have an office or playroom that can make a seamless transition into a homeschooling room?
- Is there an underutilized closet or shelf that you can convert into a homeschooling home base?
- Is the den the place that feels most conducive to learning?
- Do you want to set your guest bedroom as a mini classroom?
Sometimes you just need to get creative! Look at your home and reimagine your space to work for you in a new way. For my client, we ended up using her hall closet for her everyday homeschooling things for her three kids and used some cabinets in the garage to store extra supplies. It’s not the most conventional system but it’s a solution that is functional and makes sense for this family.
4. Make it child-friendly!
- How can you make it most accessible for your kids?
- Are there things your homeschoolers need to grab daily?
- Are there supplies they are constantly looking for like glue and scissors?
- Are they always asking where something is?
Make your homeschooling space easy to use for everyone! By using bins to subcategorize and labels to show what those categories are, you are making it easy on yourself and your kids to find what they need. Instead of asking you for something every five minutes, they can find their own books and supplies because they know where to look. This gives yourself a peace of mind and allows for your children to take some responsibility for their own school supplies!
5. Routines are key!
- How can you build homeschooling and everything that it involves into their routine?
- Does it seem like their laptops or tablets are never charged when you need them?
- Does it take a while to get the kids going in the morning with their school work?
Set up a morning and an evening routine! Things like brush our teeth, have breakfast, take out your books, etc. might seem obvious to you, but for groggy kids, this might make the difference between procrastination and getting it all done quickly with time to spare for screen time or outdoor play. In the evening, make sure all devices are plugged in and charging for the next day. This also insures that your kids are not keeping unnecessary technology in their rooms at night, disturbing their much needed sleep.
I hope you have enjoyed these tips for setting up school at home.
I know this can be a very stressful time, especially when so many parents and kids did not actively chose to do homeschooling.
Just remember that crisis school or virtual learning is not the same as deciding and preparing to do homeschool. So have grace on yourself and your kids!
If you need help with your virtual learning set up, contact us today for a free consultation, either online or face-to-face.
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