Tuesday, July 24, 2012

School Room

This is a quandry of a subject.  Franky, I am the sit down at a desk, have a sharp pencil, bright light, crisp piece of paper kind of learner.  My children....ummm....not so much.  It's taken me a few years to figure that out and be okay with it

For the first few years of homeschooling I was working so hard to set up *school at home*.  A dedicated school room.  You know, the shelves with supplies, the chalkboard, the desk facing the front, the alphabet border sweeping the room.  (swoon).  Yet, somewhere in the back of my mind I knew there was something more to be had and was led to choose a literature based curriculum.  Sonlight.  LOVED IT.  Our firstborn didn't fit into the proverbial learning box though and I panicked assuming that it had to do with the curriculum I was using.  Hunted out something more traditional (workbooks) and that led to what I refer to fondly as the 'Year of Tears' - for all of us. 

We went back to Sonlight and began the epic adventure that we're still on of making homeschooling work for us - instead of cramming our round pegs into square holes.  Duh.  Hours spent snuggling on the couch reading.  Nary a workbook except for some math at the kitchen table.  Exploration of the outdoors for science with quite a few critters and plants for visual aids.  We used to the books as supports to the things we were seeing and hearing.  I've learned to make the school books work for us instead of being a slave to the guide.  Freedom! 

Each year is a bit of a flux and flex based on our opportunities and resources at the time, along with the needs of our kids and the family.  Being able to keep school with us and have that continuity made a world of difference as we were packing up our lives and lifestyles into the back of the truck and living in Mexico and Honduras.  We had our books and school time which kept some semblance of normal for the kids.

Now we are back in the states and still, they have to do school.  :)  Shocker some days for them, but oh well.  The house we have and the stages of learning and needs they have have led us back to a school room....of sorts.  9th grade, 7th grade, 5th grade, and babyhood.  We are enjoying having a zone for all that to happen in - or at least a spot for the storage of those supplies, books, and 'yes, you need to do that math worksheet with a pencil and paper' kind of day.  (we still read together on the couch or sprawled out on the floor) 

SO - the room.  I'm working on having the kids involved in it more so there's some ownership for them.  That and I'm realizing it's just paint and the worst thing we'll have to do is paint over it and maybe replace some drywall.  Even then, we could count that for some class like Art, so it's a win-win either way.  :) 

We started out by doing the 'chalkboard'.



DONE!!! *never mind that little project in process on the floor. 

On Sunday we didn't go to church.  The kids were all still sick or on the upswing but still coughing (and that means we don't go breathing on other people in my book) so we had a lesson in creativity instead of formal church.  For some reason it took them about 10 minutes to believe me when I said we were going to write on the wall.  Normally, this is a very good thing. 

The 'means something to us as a family' wall:


The entrance to the laundry room which is right off the 'school' room. 

The 'love' even worked it's way to the kids' bathroom wall.  I could've just written out their list of morning and evening chores but I refrained.  I'm working on being more poetic in my delivery.

I think they're pretty invovled in the room now, don't you think?  It's making me twitch a bit (randomness!!!) but they had a flipping great time talking about all the 'sayings' and pictures we wanted and what they really mean to us, and we laughed a LOT while working on it together. 

Now, I just need to go back and mention again that, NORMALLY, we don't write on the walls in the house.

I wonder if they're going to believe me. 


  1. Love the chalkboard paint on the side of the stairs. Brilliant and fun!

  2. Faith, I want to be more like you. (And I love your new blog background, by the way.)