Monday, September 9, 2013

2013-2014 Classroom Tour

So the dream we shared in this post of me doing a video tour of our classroom looks like it will not be coming true.  In the past days I've spent countless hours trying to figure out editing, attempting to not look like a cow on the camera, and then when that seemed feasible my camera was not focusing in video mode.  And quite frankly, with school starting today I have lots more ways I should be spending my time.

I'm sure you understand.

Hopefully in the near future I'll be able to do some fab video chat with you all and I will be wickedly saavy in the technology department but until then you'll have to settle for dumb ole' pictures.

This is located directly behind the kiddos desks.  It fits right underneath windows.  If our classroom wasn't on the third floor I would probably make a cushion and make it a little reading area.  But since it is on the third floor...um, no.
Seeing this just makes me squirm.  I am not very good at Chemistry.  So the fact that Emma will be studying it this year definitely puts me out of my comfort zone.  
This is my main area for books.  I've labeled where everything is so you can see how I attempt to organize.  We follow the Classical Curriculum.  If you don't know what that means, basically there are 3 stages of learning and each stage is broken into 4 years.  Each of the 4 years you study different times areas of subjects and then in each stage you repeat your studies.  Does that make sense?  Anyway, because we studied Ancient Egypt in 1st grade and will again in 5th grade, I have everything separated within their own subject by the year we will use it.  That way I'm not rifling through material we aren't even covering right now.  

To me this seems like a ton of books but I guess in the grand scheme of things, this isn't too much for teaching two kiddos.  I should also note that if you are noticing all of my shelves are made for short people, you are right.  Our classroom is in our attic and it has a severe pitch from the roof.  Very angled and very hard to set up, so our shelves are under the roof line.  It's kind of hard to get to if I stand but if I move my desk chair over and sit at the books it's not bad at all.  Sometimes it's a pain but I just feel so blessed to even have a room to call our classroom! 
This is our Calendar area.  Each day the kids will put the day up.  We also have information to learn our address, and phone number, the months of the year, and will add to this as the year goes on, I'm sure.  The tree will be used once we start Awana and I can make notes of what the children have memorized as an encouragement to keep going :)
I'm embarrassed to show you this.  Do you remember on Friends when Monica didn't want anyone to open the closet because it was such a mess and she was such a neatfreak?  That is totally the same as this closet! But in total honesty, here it is.  You can see the chaos.  It's just supplies that really don't fit anywhere else.  If you have any suggestions for organization I am all ears.  These are also things I don't really want the kiddos playing with all of the time (the clock on the second shelf up is SOOO annoying!)  
This is another corner where I have books for the kids to read for fun.  It's on it's own and is super easy for the kiddos to get to.  Emma a lot of times during her afternoon reading time will come up and swap out a read book for a new one.  In the drawers are extra activities for the kiddos...puzzles, fine motor pincers,  blocks, the like.  I'm not a fan of this setup but this was part of Cal's crib and it works for now.  It will soon be replaced by a bookshelf :)

Again, total honesty...this is my desk and how it looks.  It normally looks like this just because I am working on so much to get things ready for them.  See?  You can now feel better about the condition of your desk.  
This is our reading corner.  It is built in behind the built-around around the stairs and is in a dormer.  There really is nothing to do with this area but make it a reading corner.  And it totally helped my linen closet.  The cushion is actually made up of old comforters and bedspreads that I am not ready to throw out but had no room for in our closet.  So I folded them carefully and made them into this.  The top quilt is the bedspread we had when we first got married.  I love the colorfulness and it always makes me happy.  Pillows and blankets make this a cozy area to snuggle and read.  
This is the area that is used the most.  I've labeled what everything is.  I love having the books I need on top of the workboxes so I can throw them in the box I need them to be in or take them out and put them away.  The kiddos sit really close to this so they practically have everything they need at their fingertips.  Nick made this workbox system by following a tutorial from one of my fave bloggers, Laine.  You can check the workboxes out here.    You could buy one from Ikea but they didn't have the exact size I needed and this worked perfectly!  The bins are from Ikea though.  They also have colored bins which would also be helpful for sorting by siblings or subjects. The possibilities are endless.
For a better idea of our room, this is what it looks like where the desks are.  Their workboxes are behind the chalkboard and the long bookshelf is behind my chair.  See?  This is why I need a video, folks.  So confusing.  As I mentioned we live in an old house made in the 1890's.  Our homeschool room is on the third floor.  We have an intercom system because it just feels too massive.  Sometimes I hate the angles and it not being done as much as I want and on and on.  But God gently reminds me (as he's so good at doing) that I am blessed to even have an entire room to teach in and discover things and explore with these blessings of ours.  And when we are done, we are done.  I can shut the door and not have to trip over all of this stuff.  And please know that I think there are tons of ways to homeschool and I am in no means looking down on you if you don't have your own room.  I know moms who only homeschool at the library!

I hope my photos have helped explain things...I get tons of questions about how I do things, where things are, what we have, etc.  If you have any unanswered questions let me know and I'll try to answer.

We are starting school today so hopefully everything goes well...praying for a great year for you all too!
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1 comment:

Pam Bishop said...

Looks great! Good luck to you and your kiddos :-)