Many people ask "how do you do it?" Honestly , everyday is a new set of challenges and I adapt weekly as needs and skills change. By skills I do not mean spelling or reading , I mean stacking, climbing, getting lids unscrewed and zippers unzipped. While it is wonderful to see your little one learning new tricks it is exhausting.
There have been some great posts and pictures over the past few months of inspirational learning spaces that are straight from a magazine. Then I wipe the drool snap back to my reality , put on my big girl panties and do what I do best. Make it work.
Our make it work space is a cottage under 700 sqft. I have three growing boys, Lovie is 9 the Lion is 5 and NoNo is almost two. We are stacked to the ceiling and every room is multi purpose. I have done a slide show My Cottage in earlier blog. (side note here,...the bathroom has a ceiling again!) We are usually under construction some where in our home as it is OLD.
I love to use show off or clear bins with lids for EV-ER-Y THING. It is so much easier to find things when in neatly labeled containers. You can see what in it, yes but labels look great and help the kids learn to recognize words. Having a lid keeps dust and the other unwanted, crumbs, spills and yes....bugs. We do live in the woods so ants,..beetles,...lizards, treefrogs, and most recently a RACOON found it 's way in. Crazy I know but it is MY crazy life and I own it to the fullest. I am in the process of moving less desirable items paint, glitter glue, little buttons and all the good stuff, to higher shelves and keeping the stuff under three foot more friendly for NoNo. My paint drawers will become Montessori type one for each continent, then switch out to match themes brothers are studying.
Kids Room Toy Storage
I also use this on my three ring binders to mark spines, it can be changed easy as needed
Pub height tables are the way to go. Reason one little hands can just grab everything, (until they learn to climb the stools) I do not have to bend over low tables and can easily stand and move between kids. We have one in the school room closet area of which the dreaded sock basket hides. One in the living room that I use a lot for my laptop to hook to TV. This is a great way to do group lessons online. We love brain pop, and just got a free trial to discovery streaming (very useful) and enjoy an occasional live class with Mrs P over at currclick. The front porch is also home to a four top pub table this is where they enjoy to eat outside and do real messy stuff. A tall workstation is in the plans for the bedrooms legos do not have to be guarded so carefully.
Books, Books, Books, and BOOKS
We have four large floor to ceiling cases that look like hammock's in the living room/master suite. For now they keep them organized and off the floor. Why do they sell bookcases that are not intended to hold books?? I keep teaching resource's like reproducible and manuals in the school room and have come up with a master filing system that I use. For our books,my teachers books,..the boys folders my black box of PDF's and soon my pinterest boards will use this as well. Main folders Science, History, Geography, Language arts, (I include music and art here for now.) and math. Then in to subfolders so science has zoology, botany, anatomy, earth space, physical science and in our home marine science gets it's own nook. It has been and will always be a work in progress, but working well. I have made folders for myself that are masters with tittle lists and photo copied table of contents when needed. Then I can easily find and USE the resource's I have been squirreling away. Ever bought the same book twice or done a unit and realized you forgot something cool.
I hope you have found some inspiration in my ramblings and are empowered to make it work with what you have. I still dream of the huge 20x18 wreck room with room to display and play. Until then will continue to strive in my role as "director of creative resource's" with what I have and be thankful that my children do get to grow up together.
I would love to see your space, and hear ideas you may have. Share a comment below and link up to follow. I will be giving away a 20.00 Giftcard to Currclick. (we do a random hat draw so be sure to follow) Currclick is having a pay what you want sale for just two more days,.so stock up what you can and wishlist a few goodies incase you win! We will do hat pull at end of the month.