Homeschooling in a Small Space
Have you ever thought you can’t homeschool because you don’t have a dedicated school room? Maybe you feel you just don’t have the space? Where will the desk(s) go, or the chalkboard? Well I’m here to tell you, you don’t need all of that. I know there can be lots of obstacles when we are trying to begin to homeschool. One major one is people feel they need a whole room just for school. So I wanted to share my tips, tricks and encouragement for homeschooling in a small space since we have been doing this for 4 years now.There are so many things that can hold you back from homeschooling but I don’t want someone feeling like they cant because they don’t have enough space. You can give your child a wonderful education without all of those things. They may even be better off.
If you are new here my name is Rachel and this year I have a 3rd grader and 1st grader and we are going into year 4 of homeschooling. Let me start by saying we live in what some would consider a small house and we always have. Today I’m going to share our homeschooling/dining space.
That’s right we homeschool mostly in our dining area at our dining table. I know, surprise, surprise. But we have worked our way here and it works! I’ll go more into why later. When we first began, I tried. I tried to use our sunroom but it was too hot during summer and too cold during winter. When the temperature was just right my kindergartener was not having sitting down at a table.
Most of our lessons used to consist of sitting on the living room rug because being able to move was how my daughter learned best, but that’s a story for another day. So four years in and adding baby sister into our homeschool we have settled here, at the dining room table.
Ok let’s not kid ourselves it’s not a dining room, it’s a dining…corner…nook. But it works for us. So let me elaborate on how we make homeschooling in a small house, work.
How to Homeschool in the Dining Room
Declutter. I have to be real here. Making homeschool work in a small space means you have to only keep the things that hold value. I’m not trying to get Kon-Mari on you but if you have a small space there isn’t much room for just in case. So I had to go through all of my old curriculum and books and get rid of the curriculum and workbooks I had been holding onto, just in case. I tossed things that were from grade levels my kids were not in anymore and I sold perfectly good curriculum that we had chosen not to use.
Quick clean ups. Since our dining area is a multi purpose area we have to clear it when we move on to a different task. About three times a day we do a “quick cleanup” which is just me setting a 10 minutes timer and we put as many things away as we can. It has become easier as the kids have gotten older and are able to help more.
Utilize the whole house. Just because a space is called the “breakfast nook” doesn’t mean we can only eat breakfast there. We utilize all rooms of our house during our homeschool day. If you have multiple kids you know sometimes they need to be separated. While I’m working with one child Ill send my other off with something as simple as a TV tray sometimes to another area. Whether that be the living room, the sunroom, my room, or even outside if she wants.
Homeschool on the go. We use all the city funded places we have in our area and more! Libraries usually have study rooms you can book and wifi is free, we have a nature center, parks, Barnes & Noble. The sky is the limit. Pack those backpacks and go!
Become an organizing queen/king. Homeschool can come with alot of stuff, especially with the younger grades. In order to keep your sanity be smart when storing supplies. Use vertical space. Just because its a kitchen cabinet doesnt mean you cant store books in there if its close to where you usually school. My favorite by far are back of the chair organizers like this one here (amazon link). It keeps things tidy and close by. You could always stick their backpacks on the back of the chair too but they tend to slip off.
Why we do it
4 years ago when I was only schooling one little kindergartener we would sit on the floor. That’s right all of our lessons were on the floor. She wiggled and moved so much, chairs were not for her. Moving to the dining table was a privilege (for me and my back). Also having both children close to me is necessary. They are still at the age where they need me not only to help them with their work but to make sure they stay on task so this setup works best for us. For young children, this is best even if you do have more space.
Right now we are loving our small home and all the benefits it brings to us and things we are able to do because of not having the burden of having a bigger home. I’ll say there are times when people get in your way or you have to choose not to get more things but there are so many benefits for us that outweigh the negatives.
Also having our smaller home has allowed us to have a larger property. And to be honest, I think that big space to run around and find adventure is where most of my children’s memories are made.
To wrap it up I just want to say having a smaller home does not mean you cant homeschool. Your kids will not notice and sometimes it can even be a big advantage. In fact I have a great article here for tips for beginners that I think you will be interested in. Ill also leave you with some of the main ways I covered that can make this work.
- Use the dining table/kitchen island
- Homeschool in your backyard
- Use library study rooms and parks
- Use a TV tray to homeschool anywhere
- Use back of the chair organizers
Thanks for coming by and checking out our little homeschool corner. Comment below and let me know any tricks or tips you have homeschooling in a small space. Let me know if you have any questions too. You can also check out what we are doing on the day to day at lilysandleis_littlefarmhouse on Instagram