Sunday, August 12, 2012

Our School Room 2012-2013

Make sure you check out my blog each Monday in August I will be participating again in the Not Back to School Blog Hop.

This week is School Room Week at the Not Back to School Blog Hop.

Just like my mind our school room is a bit cluttered but it works. We live in an apartment currently. Its a large one 1400 sq ft but it still feels cramped sometimes or perhaps we just have too much stuff.

The School Room:
Okay so here is a walk through of our school room.

I will come clean now..."My name is Kathy and I have an addiction to posters and books". There I said it. I love having educational stuff covering the walls and books filling up the bookcases. Gwyn learned how to read one of her first word which was zoo from a poster. Posters help sneak in educational learning without them even knowing it. And well when I see a good deal on a book I just cannot pass it up. Having bookcases filled with books that the kids can pick up at anytime to learn something new from makes me smile.

The Entrance:
The school room door has posters on it along with our nature board where the kids glue their nature treasure. The area behind (no space unused) has posters and an over the door hanger for aprons, bags, etc. When you first enter there is a small wall on the right with of course another poster and a knick knack shelf with various things that Ben and I picked up on our past travels. And then an overall view of the room when you first walk in. The kids refuse to let me take down the Truffalla Tree decorations we made.

The Bookcases:
Here are our jammed pack bookcases even the tops and sides have something on them. These poor things are so abused notice the bowing shelves? I am surprised they haven't collapsed yet. The bookcases store our games, pen/pencil bin, puzzles, workbooks, books, and some manipulatives. On top of one of the bookcases is a bin that holds our completed unit studies. On the top of the other is a storage box  with overstock of miscellaneous supplies and a sorter with craft project ideas and other miscellaneous resources. On the sides of the bookcases are of course posters. One of the bookcases has our nifty pocket chart which is connected to a curtain rod. It can be rolled up when not in use.

The Walls:
Each and every wall and door is covered with something. Besides the many educational posters you will see a bug specimen board, Geo Matters maps, bird skeleton board, calendar, character training lighthouse, American flag, growth chart and more.

The Desks:
The kids each have their own desk areas of course most of the time we are sprawled out on the floor. Gwyns desk which has the hutch stores some of our learning resources along with her "treasures" and personal belongings like her magnetic dolls, rock collection, v-tech books, special art supplies and beads. Rowyns desk is 6 ft folding table which has a work area for him with his "treasures". At the end of the table is our unit study exploration box, microscopes, abacus and a few other things. Under the table are a few bins with their toys.

Learning Center Bins:
I found this CD tower by the dumpster (yes I dumpster dive) and got the idea to turn it into storage for learning bins. There 10 bins which have cooking supplies, tools, sewing supplies, flash cards, science tools, magnets, lacing cards, tanagrams and lacing beads.

And lastly there is the closet. This is where the filing cabinet, craft supplies, larger toys and adult board games are stored.

You may have noticed everything is labeled with a picture and word. I did this for two reasons so that the kids could remember where to put things back and so that they could begin to associate the written word with the object which helps them with learning to read.

The only thing I really dislike about our school room is the lack of light. There is no over head light and very little sunlight comes through. I have one little lamp but it is no enough. Got any ideas?

Other Learning Areas:
We don't confine our learning to just the school room. We also utilize the kitchen, living room and balcony. We mostly do our reading and computer learning on the sofa. Normally my laptop is on the small table in front of the sofa. The messy craft projects and cooking lessons take place in the kitchen. And on the balcony the kids have fun bird watching, gardening, playing in their sand bin, blowing bubbles, jumping rope and nature journaling (since the area behind us is wooded). I also have a picture of our library bin. We have about 75 books out at any given time. I know you are probably wondering how I keep track of that many? Well the books are only allowed in the living room (unless I take one to the schoolroom) and when they are done reading or looking at a book it is either immediately returned to the bin or it is placed in the library suitcase (yup suitcase) to be returned to the library on our next trip. I would also consider the library part of our school room area as well since we visit there about twice a week.

All Over Georgia (we love field trips) and truly believe "The World Is Our Classroom":

Thanks for stopping by to take a look inside my cluttered mind or should I say cluttered house! 

*Disclaimer - Many of the links found on my side bars and in my blog posts are affiliate links. As a result, I might get paid money and I will most likely spend the money on homeschool supplies or field trips.


Rebecca said...

Kathy, you know what i love about your homeschool room....that your family doesn't just learn there...It looks GREAT - you have really worked hard since you moved in! Can't wait to come over and learn some with you!!!!

Jodi said...

That is a big apartment! It is the same size as my house. It looks like your school room is in a bedroom. So is it a 3 bedroom apartment? I remember at one point you said it was in what would be your dining room.

We have a small house, and I am just trying to get some ideas. Thanks!

Anne Elliott said...

Really awesome, Kathy!! Love it!!

Jen G said...

Awesome! Love the pictures! Did you make the stickers/labels for the bins? I need to do that.

Jennifer Janes said...

I think it's great that you made someone else's trash your learning bin storage! You have really done a great job of maximizing your space!

Kathy Balman said...

Yes I made the labels in printshop.

Erin @ Home with the Boys said...

I love how colorful your room is! What fun place for learning!

Kathy Balman said...

Yes it is very big. It is a 3 bedroom and the kids share a room so the extra room is the schoolroom. They are young enough they don't care about sharing a room all they use it for is sleeping anyway. Last year our schoolroom was in the dining room that apartment was only about 1200 sq ft. We had an extra bedroom there too but it was my craft room and computer room. In this house the dining room is my craft/computer area.

Kathy Balman said...

Cannot wait for you to come hang out soon!

Kathy Balman said...

We are right across from the dumpster so I am always looking out for FREE usable furniture. The white chair in the schoolroom is also a dumpster find. We also have a TV stand and another computer chair that we got at the dumpster. The bookcases in the schoolroom I bought from a friend for $10 each.

Jennifer Janes said...

Way to "shop" for bargains! I'm very impressed. :)

Kelli Parker Becton said...

I love your apartment ;) you've done a wonderful job with it and I love the school areas :)

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