Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Our Schoolroom

I love looking at where other people conduct their homeschool. I realize that everyone does not have an official schoolroom, but all of us homeschoolers have some sort of dedicated space for our materials and such. You may have all of your craft supplies in your kitchen, your schoolbooks on shelves in your den, and your children may complete their schoolwork in their bedrooms. You may have turned your formal dining room into your schoolroom (I did this in our previous home), or you may be using an extra bedroom. You may use your kitchen table and couches in your den for all of your schoolwork. But no matter where you store your materials or teach your lessons, I feel like most of us tend to use our comfortable living spaces for at least some of our schoolwork.

We built our home five and half years ago, and I had a room in our basement completely finished out to be our schoolroom. I designed the room to store all of our school and craft supplies as well as have room to actually conduct school. We don't do all our schoolwork in our schoolroom, but we are able to if we want. One advantage of having a designated room for school is that all of the materials and supplies are contained in one room. If you have made a big mess, you can close the door. You don't have to clean off the table every time you need to eat. However, even though we have a separate schoolroom, I try my best to keep it clean and tidy on a daily basis. It makes the environment more conducive to learning.

Here is a tour of my schoolroom. I hope it gives you some ideas for your learning areas.

When you walk in the room and look to the left, this is what you see: a marker board and calendar on the wall, and a set of bookshelves. The colored bins on the right have books organized by subject (astronomy, human body, rocks and minerals, etc.)
The calendar is mostly for my younger children, and I use it on a daily basis to teach the days of the week and the months of the year. Since taking these pictures, I have hung the days of the week, months of the year, and number words and numbers (1-20) on the wall underneath the marker board. These will be used for teaching Sam.

In the picture below, you can see the entire wall. The closed door leads to my supply closet, and the open door leads to the foyer of the basement.

Behind the marker board is a walk in closet with floor to ceiling shelves along one wall. I have a U.S. map hung on the wall across from the shelves. Beside the shelves I hung the Sonlight markable map, and I keep a large trash can inside this closet too. The shelves hold the children's work buckets, various craft supplies, school materials, and my collection of preschool/early elementary activities.

Sitting in front of the marker board is our table. Sometimes the children sit here to do their daily independent work. The table is useful for all kinds of craft activities, and it is where I sit when I am helping a child do his schoolwork. If I am reading aloud to the children in the schoolroom, they all usually sit around this table, drawing or coloring while I read. The rug underneath the table extends beyond the table which gives the children a comfortable place to play. I usually put the preschool activities of the day on different squares on the rug.

This is the door that leads into the schoolroom. A couple of years ago I took most of the posters and school-like decorations off of the schoolroom walls. I felt like it was just too cluttered and busy. Last week when I was cleaning out and organizing the schoolroom, I came across a box of stored wall hangings.....Leah was in there with me, and thought that the posters and things were so pretty! So she and I decorated the schoolroom walls--every inch of it! We hung things on all of the doors and even on the bathroom wall! Then Jimmy replaced all of the burned out light bulbs. When my other children entered the schoolroom, they were so surprised! Everyone seemed pleased by the bright new look.

Most of the decorations have either an astronomy or human body theme. Those are the two subjects that Leah and Clay will be studying next year using the Apologia Elementary Science books.

the door to the storage room
that is the paint easel to the left

the bathroom wall

When you look to right when entering the schoolroom, you will see a wall of two desks. The larger desk holds my teacher books, mailing supplies, and various other office type supplies. Sometimes a child may do his schoolwork here. The smaller desk holds the computer where the children do their Teaching Textbooks math courses. A printer/copier is in between the two desks. Julie and Clay will also use this computer for their Sonlight geography work for Core 5 this year. The bathroom is to the left of the larger desk.

In front of the back wall of the schoolroom sits a rocking chair, and behind it a refrigerator (which holds mostly drinks). I usually sit in the rocking chair when I am reading aloud, and I have rocked babies for hours while helping children do their schoolwork in that chair! When I was so sick while pregnant with Leah and Sam, I reclined most of the morning in that chair---helping the children as best I could.

To the left of the refrigerator is a long countertop with cabinets above and below. The large drawers are my filing drawers. The cabinets below store craft items, and the ones above store paint supplies and all of my scrapbooking materials. The countertop is very useful for drying art projects.

The left wall holds our piano, paper cabinet, and bookshelves (pictured at the beginning of this post).

Outside the schoolroom door, where you enter the foyer, I have baskets for shoes, hooks for coats, and another bookshelf. This bookshelf stores all of our animal books and some of our history books. The baskets on top of the bookshelf holds our Revolutionary War books.

I hope you enjoyed the tour of my schoolroom! While we don't do all of our schoolwork in this room, I am so grateful for this wonderful room.


  1. Thank you for the wonderful tour of your school room! I love seeing other homeschoolers' school rooms to get ideas.


  2. What a cool space for you guys! Thanks for sharing, Roan.

  3. Linked up to your blog via your sister-in-law Megan and I am so excited that I did! You are truly inspirational in all that you do--from home schooling your children, to running, to coupon clipping (we do that at our house too!)I especially like hearing all about your runs/training for runs--I am an avid runner and am trying to get more involved in competitive running through entering local races. Looking forward to following your blog! :)

  4. Wow! What a wonderful schoolroom! I love it and think you've done a fabulous job of organizing it! When we originally added our upstairs, that was my plan, to make it a large homeschool area. I found that I spend so much time in my kitchen and going back and forth to check on and change babies that I love using our downstairs living and eating areas. Plus I love it when I can make rooms work for dual puposes! Now the upstairs has become a play and arts and crafts haven. And I don't have to go up and down the stairs a million times a day- wait- maybe that's a bad thing:). I have lots of great posters for this year, but will have to change them out one at a time on our bulletin board. I think it's great that you have so much wall space. I also love that you have a computer in your schoolroom. I need to think about how I could move a computer closer to where we do most of our work, especially since Monk will use Teaching Textbooks this year.

    Thank you for the tour and thanks again for the planning tips. I'm really excited about the upcoming school year and the changes you've helped me make!

  5. I LOVE LOVE your room. It looks like the color of your walls and your floor match our new room! We closed in our garage to make a playroom/schoolroom and I can already tell I need more shelving!! Your room is fabulous!

  6. Makes me miss school already! There was NEVER a spare space on my walls and boards between reference charts and student work. The students used those charts all the time. If no one used it...it came down. Love a loaded classroom!

  7. Roan, I gave you a silly blog award. Check it out when you have time.


  8. Wow beautiful. I won't show you mine (it's our dining room). Thanks for sharing. I'm inspired to make our shelves a bit more organized.

  9. I love looking at other families school rooms too. Your is great! Thanks for sharing the photos with us.

  10. This post inspired this weeks Yay For Me Wednesday's topic! I would love you to link up to the meme there! Yay for you ...it looks great!