A homeschool space setup is an integral part of home education. How do we create a space for learning that is inviting, clutter-free, practical, budget-friendly, and efficient? Before we set up a learning environment we need to ask ourselves, what goals are we looking to achieve.
Maria Montessori designed her classroom around one fundamental concept – the learning space has to enable the child to fulfill the desire to work independently and facilitate freedom of movement. It is through autonomy children discover their passion, identity, and develop the ability to focus and concentrate. Hence I believe we need to strive to have a holistic approach when we think of a functional and effective homeschool setup.
In Maria Montessori’s words:
… the environment is fundamental; it must facilitate the expansion of the being in process of development by a reduction of obstacles to a minimum, and must allow free scope for a child’s energies, by offering the necessary means for the activities to which they give rise. Now the adult himself is part of the child’s environment; the adult must adjust himself to the child’s needs if he is not to be a hindrance to him and if he is not to substitute himself for the child in the activities essential to growth and development.
The child whose attention has once been held by a chosen object, while he concentrates his whole self on the repetition of the exercise, is a delivered soul in the sense of the spiritual safety of which we speak. From this moment there is no need to worry about him – except to prepare an environment which satisfies his needs, and to remove obstacles which may bar his way to perfection.
These sensitive periods are of great importance and education must facilitate this opportunity which is inherent in the child. Education must prepare an environment that will aid the development of life.
The child realises that through his own efforts he can be independent and achieve things he has set his mind to. And gradually we educators are confronted with a simple but important fact: that to help the child is not what he needs, and indeed that to give help is an impediment for the child. Therefore he must be allowed to act freely on his own initiative in this free environment.
If the child is allowed to use his spontaneous activity in a tranquil environment without interference or unasked for help, he is indeed engaged in a most important work: he is building the man he will one day be.
The characteristic of children under 6 years of age is that it is almost impossible to teach them; children of this age cannot take from a teacher. Therefore they are considered to be too young to go to school and therefore education does not begin until 6 years of age. Another characteristic of this age is that the children know and understand a great deal. They are full of knowledge. This would seem to be a contradiction, but the truth is that these children must take knowledge by themselves from the environment.
What if this child knows nothing of the end he will achieve? If he is allowed to use his spontaneous activity in a tranquil environment without interference or unasked-for help, he is indeed engaged in a most important work: he is building the [person] he will one day be.
I know it is a lot to process and might seem overwhelming. So what the prepared homeschool environment might look like in practice? For some, it might mean replicating the Montessori classroom with all the materials. For others, it could be a farm backyard with animals, a veggie garden, and muddy puddles. For someone else, it could be a corner or secluded space in an apartment of a mult-storey building.
We cannot limit and create a cookie-cutter idea of an ideal homeschool environment. Every family is capable of creating a learning space for their child that fosters child-driven learning and hands-on exploration based on its unique circumstances.
In this post, I will share certain aspects of our homeschool environment and what I consider to be essential for my children’s everyday learning. As our family grew and circumstances changed, so did children’s learning spaces.
These are the main principles I follow when setting up homeschooling ROOM for my children:
Clutter-free environment. Our space for home education contains a shelf with children’s work, materials, toys for open-ended play, printables, and hands-on explorations. When I had one child, I constantly rotated toys. With three children I find I can have most of our toys available at all times. With time, children become more aware of their environment and our family standards when it comes to taking care of our belongings. Older children are capable of modeling it to their younger siblings.
Every child has his or her working space that is set up according to the child’s age and needs. The oldest child works in her own independent space.
The six-year-old and four-year-old siblings share their workspace. As I mentioned earlier, it consists of a low shelving unit with children’s work – Montessori materials and printed cards for hands-on learning that I update regularly – generally on daily basis.
Attractive spaces. Living in an environment of beauty or aesthetically pleasing environment is not only beneficial for their learning process but also for a positive mental state of being.
Functional space. I aim to keep my supply storage nearby as I like to follow children’s pursuits. For example, I have a needle for sewing at hand if the child decides to sew a picture of the flower he or she just observed.
Children’s work and art display. Children take pride in their achievements and hard work. There is always a space available where we display their completed work.
Pet care. Generally, as a rule, children have some form of living thing they take responsibility for. Either it is a vegetable patch, a pet snail, a stick insect, or a hermit crab. They help to do research on how to keep the animal or plant alive and learn as much as possible about all its needs. They are responsible to take care of it daily.
Display with natural treasures. Discovering natural spaces outdoors is a part of our weekly homeschool routine. We have a space where children can display their newly found treasures so they can examine them and build their further knowledge.
Minimal wall decor. I rotate maps, student charts that are on display. However, I always make sure we keep those at minimum.
Flowers or plants. Children enjoy arranging flowers to make their working space appear more pleasant and appealing. Once in a while, we head to shops for them to choose flowers or plants they wish to have.
Supplies. Children always need to have access to all the essentials that facilitate uninterrupted learning – adequate lighting, working space, school supplies:
Children also need to have access to tools that help them maintain their environment in good condition and keep it clean. At the end of each day, they dust and vacuum their learning spaces, help sharper pencils, etc.
Are you feeling overwhelmed and don’t know where to start? Join this guide to Montessori-inspired homeschool to ease into homeschooling with confidence.
Chore Charts for children of different ages Fifty-six visual and thirty-six non-visual chore cards Blank rounds and editable blank chore cards to add your chores to the list Different chore board designs to choose from
Editable and customizable homeschool planner with daily and weekly planner templates for infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and lower elementary students based on key areas of Montessori scope and sequence. It can be used by families internationally with the option to choose Jan-Dec or Aug – July academic year.
Seasonal printables were designed specifically for Montessori classrooms with a large variety of activities that cover different learning areas, such as geography, math – one-to-one correspondence, language – identifying the initial sound, reading, sight words recognition, classification, fine motor practice for students aged 3-6.
I Have, Who Has? Math Games help reinforce valuable lessons and math concepts whilst capturing students’ attention, focus and concentration in a fun and engaging way. Students will be learning while having fun and playing math games with their peers in pairs, in small and large groups. Once students are familiar with the subjects, these cards can be also used as an individual activity to review important math concepts.
Early Learning Bundle with 40 printable sets that contain 3-Part Cards for an object-to-picture matching activity. Sets are designed to match the classroom favorites – Safari TOOB figures. Use in any language. All sets include an editable PowerPoint file. Types labels in your own language and print.
by Jacy Ruwe (Author), Elin Johnson (Illustrator)
It’s a question that nearly every homeschooled child asks at some point. With its delightful, hand-painted illustrations and rhythmic structure, this charming book shows readers how they can learn scholastic skills through everyday life. Sometimes, ditching the desk makes all the difference. In choosing to homeschool, your family gains the freedom to learn while snuggled up in a porch swing. Science lessons can take place in the garden. Math facts can be mastered in a grocery aisle. Days are spent in the company of loving family. The school bell doesn’t ring until tired eyes are amply rested. The homeschool life is a simpler life. Written in patterned poetic prose, this book showcases a few of the delights that come with the decision to homeschool.
by Susan Stephenson (Author) Format: Kindle Edition
A fifteen-year experience of day-by-day, year-by-year, learning how to create an authentic Montessori education at home through elementary, middle, and high school. The main guide or teacher during these years had taken AMI teacher training courses for 0-3, 3-6, and 6-12 and had taught for many years. Even though this is not to be thought of as an instruction manual for Montessori homeschooling it is hoped that the book will be helpful for parents and teachers wanting to understand the value of a unique educational path, rather than thinking that all children should be educated exactly the same way (in both traditional and Montessori schools). The idea is “following the child.”Also I hope it will help growing children and young adults feel that their own choices, their own individuality, can be respected. I believe that unique and creative educational paths such as this one will help solve the problems of the future.
by Christopher Lloyd (Author), Andy Forshaw (Illustrator)
Discover how history, nature, and science connect in this fast-paced, entertaining, and incredibly informative history of the world, from the beginning of time to the present day. How was our universe made from a tiny speck of energy? Where did the first trees, plants, animals, and humans come from? What happened to the dinosaurs? What was so miserable about medieval times? How were railroads and electricity invented? What are the perils of global warming?
A hands-on open-and-go Montessori math curriculum. Use as a supplement to traditional, physical Montessori math materials OR as a stand-alone math curriculum. Montessori math sets a firm foundation in concrete principles before slowly progressing into abstraction. This workbook uniquely takes the Montessori concrete materials and puts them on paper, so your child can sit with a pencil, scissors, and glue, and concretely manipulate, touch, and visualize numbers, creating a strong math foundation using just this workbook.
This is a learn to read book for kids 3-5 and5-7. Each age group will use the book in a slightly different way. The first group will be able to work with the help of an adult, while the older group can start the Montessori reading series mostly on their own, as they will be able to cut, paste and color most of the reading activities by themselves.
Number Concepts - number rods, cards and counters and one to one association Golden Beads - introduction and arithmetics with golden beads Linear Counting - bead bars, teens, tens, skip counting, hundred board Arithmetics - addition, multiplication, subtraction and division
by Frank Egholm (Author), Anna Cardwell (Translator)
Looking for an outdoor hobby to engage your children and encourage them to be crafty and creative? Wood carving is not only easy to learn and fun to do, but almost everything you need to get started can be found for free -- right outside your door! Together you can craft a tumbling tower game, a racing car toy, a dolphin necklace or even a handy coat hook! With more than fifty activities at levels for beginners and up, children can create something useful, beautiful or fun (often all three!) out of wood.
by Vicki Cobb (Author), Tad Carpenter (Illustrator)
Kids take the reins in the kitchen with this hands-on book of edible science experiments! With revised and updated material, a brand-new look, and hours of innovative, educational experiments, this science classic by award-winning author Vicki Cobb will be devoured by a whole new generation of readers.
Combine with such books as Awesome Science Experiments for Kids to help junior scientists continue their learning, whether at home or in a classroom.
This beautiful art encyclopedia charts the evolution of the greatest cultural achievements in painting, sculpture, and photography. The greatest art exhibition at your fingertips! Packed with fascinating facts, clear explanations, and stunning photography, this awe-inspiring art encyclopedia for kids aged 9-12 years takes you on a magical tour through time exploring every artistic style and movement in stunning detail. From Leonardo da Vinci's iconic Mona Lisa to Vincent van Gogh's spectacular The Starry Night, this art history book celebrates the lives of groundbreaking artists and their most famous art masterpieces.
by Julie Bogart (Author), Susan Wise Bauer (Foreword)
Enjoy a great reading experience when you buy the Kindle edition of this book. Learn more about Great on Kindle, available in select categories. View Kindle Edition Publishers Weekly bestseller · A joyful and accessible homeschool guide to making learning a part of everyday life Parents who are deeply invested in their children's education can be hard on themselves and their kids. When exhausted parents are living the day-to-day grind, it can seem impossible to muster enough energy to make learning fun or interesting. How do parents nurture a love of learning amid childhood chaos, parental self-doubt, the flu, and state academic standards?
MULTI AWARDS WINNING FUN LEARNING TOY - Family Choice, Mom's Choice Gold Metal & Tillywig Brain Child Award Winner 2018, and Creative Child Kids Product of the Year Winner 2019! The most popular interactive smart educational talking world map poster.
Continent Race Geography Game for kids was created by 6 year old Byron duringpassion for geography with a desire to help boys and girls like him learn and have fun during their hospital stay - and beyond! For 2+ players
The ShillerLearning Math Kit I - everything you need in a single box! No lesson preparation required by parents! Your package contains over a dozen different manipulatives based on Dr. Maria Montessori's method developed over a hundred years ago. Includes a balance, number cards, number tiles, operator set, foam ball, wood dominoes, a US/metric ruler, wooden shapes, dice, measuring cups, and probability bag. You also receive a wide range of decimal material, including 100 unit cubes, 27 ten rods, 27 hundred rod, and 17 thousand cubes (1 plastic and 16 oaktag) along with a wooden decimal tray.
Magnetic Fuel Tank Monitor Card. Magnets on the game board to hold Fuel Stations in place. 2 levels of game play. This game will arrive in new condition. Please note that each Mission to Mars Edition game was opened in the U.S. for the sole purpose of adhering the magnets to the game board, thus saving customers the task. The game will arrive taped closed with clear tape on all 4 edges of the color box.
It’s time to say NO to trying to fit square-peg kids into rounds holes, and YES to raising them from a place of acceptance and joy. Today millions of kids are stuck in a world that doesn’t embrace who they really are. They are the one in five “differently wired” children with ADHD, dyslexia, giftedness, autism, anxiety, or other neurodifferences, and their challenges are many. And for the parents who love them, the challenges are just as numerous, as they struggle to find the right school, the right support, the right path. But now there’s hope. Differently Wired is a revolutionary book—weaving together personal stories and a tool kit of expert advice from author Deborah Reber, it’s a how-to, a manifesto, and a reassuring companion for parents who can so often feel that they have no place to turn.
Teaching children how to manage their intense emotions is one of the most difficult aspects of parenting or educating gifted children. Emotional Intensity in Gifted Students: Helping Kids Cope With Explosive Feelings provides a much-needed resource for parents and educators for understanding of why gifted children are so extreme in their behavior and how to manage the highs and lows that accompany emotional intensity. Presented in an easy-to-read, conversational style, this revised and updated second edition contains additional chapters addressing temperament and personality development, as well as expanded role-plays and strategies designed to show parents and teachers how to interact and guide gifted children in a way that teaches them how to recognize, monitor, and adjust their behavior. Updated resources and worksheets make this practical resource a must-read for anyone wishing to make a positive and lasting impact on the lives of gifted children.
by Susan Stiffelman (Author), Eckhart Tolle (Foreword)
Our children can be our greatest teachers. Parenting expert Susan Stiffelman writes that the very behaviors that push our buttons — refusing to cooperate or ignoring our requests — can help us build awareness and shed old patterns, allowing us to raise our children with greater ease and enjoyment. Filled with practical advice, powerful exercises, and fascinating stories from her clinical work, Parenting with Presence teaches us how to become the parents we most want to be while raising confident, caring children.
Creating a space for play and learning in our home took some planning, but I am so happy with the way our homeschool classroom turned out. Bright colors, cozy couch, chalkboard wall, computer desk, tons of storage…what’s not to love?!?!
If you’re looking for some homeschool room ideas for small spaces, you’re in the right place. Check out these tips and resources for homeschooling in small spaces. From organizing hacks to design ideas, you’ll find what you need to make the most of the space you have for your homeschool.
These homeschool room ideas will inspire you to make the most of this special space. Turn the area (or areas) where your learn-at-home adventures occur into an organized, beautiful space with these creative ideas and tips.
A homeschool cart is a fantastic tool to boost and organize your learning space and life. You can customize your rolling cart to fit your style and needs. And you’ll love the flexibility, easy accessibility, and extra storage you get with your homeschool rolling cart.
If you’ve decided to homeschool your child, then chances are you are going to be a little overwhelmed with all the things you need to do before your school year can begin. One of those things is setting up a homeschool area for your kids to learn in.
Help your children develop positive study skills, productive work habits, and increased school success by creating a designated kids homework station in your home. Are you looking for homework station ideas? We’ve got you covered! Shared below is everything you need to know about how to set up a kids homework station.
Our storage for Montessori materials and Chinese/Korean activities is a work-in-progress. I’ve been hesitant about sharing how we organize our Montessori homeschool supplies that are out of rotation, because I still have a lot I need to clear out! Since many of you have patiently waited for this part of our homeschool tour, here’s a preliminary overview of how our storage looks.
August means it’s time to get ready for school, and I’m excited to share these easy-to-make art and school supplies storage cans! To keep those pencils, markers, scissors, and other writing utensils extra organized, I hope our printable English and Chinese labels for school supplies can help!
I don’t do a homeschool room post every year; I only do one if we have a new school room or have made some big changes to our previous one. Just a few short months after I had set up our schoolroom in our brand new house, we learned that we would be moving for my husband’s job. Well, we are finally moved into our new home (after a long 2 years in limbo because the housing market we were living in was horrible) and I’m excited to share our new homeschool space with you.