Monday, August 18, 2014

Getting Ready

I love planning and organizing things, so the beginning of the school year is always a very exciting time for me. The sprouts have been helping me to unpack all of my teaching gear and to set up our dining room classroom. With only one week until we start back, here's a little peek into what we have put together...

We have a cozy spot here! Without a whole separate room to spare for school work, our family decided that it made the most sense for us to use the dining room. This way we can use the big table to stretch out and do projects. Also, I love the idea of our "school" being centrally located, because as a family, we are committed to learning all of the time.

We have a reading area with comfy chairs, an educational rug, and lots of accessible books. The bin on the floor has books that relate to pets, home, and families since we are starting with a community social studies theme in the fall.

I am trying to sort some of games and tools into baskets by subject area. This way, if I need to work individually with one of the kids, I can grab a basket off of the shelf to keep the others busy learning.

These are my crazy organized binders that I used for classroom resources when I was teaching full time. I brought them home and tweaked them a little to meet our homeschooling needs. Brightly-colored binders and funky, designer paper make me happy!


  1. I love this! I'm going to go back to school this year to teach elementary school :) I'm not sure I want to homeschool C, but I want to set up a space for him to play and for his therapies - what kinds of things are in those binders??

    1. It looks like maybe I should do a post about my bins and boxes as well as my resource binders!

      Briefly, my resource binders have a collection of worksheets, project pages, and articles organized by themes. For example, my Writing Binder has sections for informational writing, narrative writing, and opinion writing (these are the 3 types of writing used in the Common Core standards). Within each section are resources that I would use to help my child learn strategies for that type of writing-- things like graphic organizers, story starters, etc. I pull resources from all over the internet and my old school materials, so it helps to have them sorted according to subject.

      The bins are also just a way for me to organize. I have some book baskets sorted by theme (right now, we have a "Home & Family" basket as well as an "ABC Books" basket). I also keep a bin of "Just Right" books that First Sprout can read independently and a bin of children's magazines to introduce more informational reading material. There are also baskets with math manipulatives: Unifix cubes, Tinker Toys (for building shapes), Play Doh, etc. The center bins from Math, Science, Literacy, and Art are a bit of a catch all right now. For example, I have thrown calculators, rulers, number flashcards, playing cards, and spare dice into the Math Center basket. I have magnifying glasses, shells, feathers, pinecones, and other natural treasures in the Science Center basket. I am still working out exactly how we are going to incorporate these things into out routine, but I will be happy to share when I do!

  2. And all those bins and boxes? I'm so curious!!