Saturday, July 13, 2013

Home School Room Redo

Today I decided to tackle my mess in the school room. Yikes! I have been blinding my eyes when I have to walk through that room ever since the last day of school. If you home school, you know that the last thing you want to do after you have finally survived completed a school year, is even LOOK at the mess you've made throughout the year. All three of our desks were getting every-growing piles of junk on top of them.
Don't believe me? Look below...
 I should have taken pictures before I started the clean up. This is mid-organization. I stopped and took a break and was really tempted to throw up my hands. Our "room" is not really a room, but kind of a pathway to get to the kids' rooms and the main bathroom. It doesn't have a door, I guess it was originally planned as an office space? (Fast forward to years from now, and picture wall-to-wall built in cabinets with a couple of different workstations and granite counter tops. Craft room!)
 Ok, back to reality. See how BAD the above photo is?? No wonder I wanted to quit mid-clean up.
 Now on to the "afters". Above is my old turquoise table that I use as my desk. If you didn't already know that I am a color addict, it will become very clear in this blog post. ;) The easel to the left (Ikea) I folded up and pushed against the wall. We use it if we are doing a project together, but that's not too often anymore. I have smaller whiteboards on the turquoise shelf (Ikea), that I can pull out for us to use. It's just easier when you're dealing with small spaces to tuck it away if you don't use it every day.
I had fun organizing my new cart with all of our much-used goodies. I like to use clear glass containers and white milk glass to organize smaller items. Yes, I'm using a vintage Miracle Whip glass jar to house my dry erase markers and erasers. ;) 
 I picked up that globe today at a yard sale. Eventually I'd like to have a collection of globes, but I'm cheap so it will probably take awhile. When I bought the globe today, the man told me he hated to part with it because it was always in his dad's office his whole life. I told him I was going to put it in our school room and he was so happy that he clapped! It was cute, it made him feel so much better about selling it, knowing that it would have a new life in our home. The giant bookshelf is also Ikea, and once the school year begins, it will get filled with teacher editions.
Our room is oddly shaped, and you have to walk through it to get to the bathroom or Emma's room, so we can't put the desks just anywhere. They concentrate best if they aren't next to each other (poke, poke!), and I need to be able to reach both desks to hand them work. Our walls are obviously FILLED with charts, maps, calendars, etc. The teal paper rack was a magazine holder that I found at a thrift store years ago and painted.
 I started thinking today about HOW MUCH time we spend in this room during the year, and I really needed to make it a pretty place. I got some old windows for free a couple of weeks ago, and I thought it would be cute to hang it up with a colorful bunting banner. I also lined up my favorite Ball jars. I wish you could tell how BIG this window is, but the picture makes it look really small.
 I also had this window lying around, so I added a quick colorful pastel bunting.
Last is our art wall. Every so often I buy the kids a canvas or two to paint.They love it, and I think it's so important to let them create. I hate to say I have a favorite, but that cupboard door in the center that says "I will fly, chase the wind, and touch the sky" just KILLS me! Cami painted it when she was 7 years old and it is from a song in the movie Brave. 

I looked up our old school room, which is now Emma's bedroom. It's here if you'd like to take a look. It also shows how we used to keep track of the books they read when they were in the younger grades, and how our reward system worked. It worked wonderfully at that age, by the way!

The other thing we've done is "the happy heart box". We have a big wooden box, that is painted to look like a giant alphabet block, and it gets filled with candy and little toys. Every Monday, if they were good every day the previous week, they got to pick from the happy heart box. It could also work as a Friday afternoon treat with a week's worth of good behavior and completed work. We still use it now that they're older, but now they just choose two candies that they can eat while they are working on Monday afternoons instead of toys.

That's it! Hopefully it gives you some ideas, but mostly I'm just glad to get it done and not have Mt. Everest growing on my desk.


  1. It looks great, Jaime! So much hard work. Love the way you care for your girls, do all kinds of crafts, blog, etc. You're Superwoman!