How to Organize Homeschool Supplies in a Small Space

Joshua-school-deskI know there are many homeschool moms who are blessed to have “schoolrooms” in their homes to teach their children.  I know that it helps separate school time from the rest of the day and school supplies from other toys and activities.  At our house, we do all of our schoolwork at the kitchen table or on the picnic table on our deck.  If he needs more quiet, Joshua works at his old-fashioned school desk in his bedroom.  This works for us.  I actually don’t want a school room. We love being together as a family.  I love not having another room to clean.  I like being able to multitask, working on other things while I’m available to answer questions.

school-cupboard1So where do I keep all of our school stuff?  I actually don’t have a lot, even though we have everything we need.  I keep all of our school books and most of our supplies in one cabinet in the kitchen.  Everything is easily accessible right where we need it.  School books, pencils, erasers, colored pencils, crayons, drawing paper, construction paper, glue, tape, scissors, ruler, abacus, learning clock, flash cards, etc.  It’s all in there.  We just started second grade, so now all of the first grade books are in a box in our storage room, waiting for Kaleb to need them.

school-cupboard2I love my cupboard!  It all came together with things that I had around the house.  I did not purchase anything new to create this space.  The tray on the top of the cupboard door is actually an organizer used in a drawer.  I drilled holes in the side and attached it to the door with screws.  I keep my stuff in here: pens, dry erase markers, stapler, x-acto knife (things that my toddler can’t reach even when standing on a chair).  The bottom organizer is actually meant to be used for lids of pots and pans.  I screwed it to the cupboard door and put another draw organizer tray inside so that things wouldn’t fall through.  It holds things that we use daily: flashcards, scissors, tape, and glue.

school-cupboard4Believe it or not, I do not have a shelf inside this cabinet!  I accomplished a makeshift shelf for my back row of books by using a wire puzzle organizer.  I’ve seen many of these in other moms’ homes.  I just turned it on its side and put a heavy piece of cardboard on top.  This “shelf” holds books that I don’t use as often and workbooks that we will use as second grade progresses.  Underneath I have things that we don’t use as often (craft supplies and playdough).

school-cupboard3I put a nail into the side of my cabinet to hang a clipboard.  We use this regularly for loose papers.  It is also a must when we are doing schoolwork outside.  Otherwise his papers blow away.  On the bottom of my cabinet, I have books that we use daily, as well as two bins of school supplies.  They are made to stack on top of each other and are very easy to pull out when I need to use them or get to things behind.

school-cupboard5In addition to my cabinet, I have two small whiteboards hanging on the kitchen wall below my spice cabinet.  I also have a regular calendar that we also use for school.  In the hallway, I have a huge map of the world that we will use throughout our homeschooling years.  I plan to get a globe soon and that will sit on the wide top shelf of my spice cabinet, so it’s accessible when we need it.

That’s all of our school supplies and everything that we need.  I don’t stock up on books for future grades.  I do have some books that my husband and I used when we were in college that we saved for later learning.  They are in a box under the bed, but we haven’t bought books for future years of homeschooling.  I’m more of the mindset that I will wait and see what my kids are interested in when the time comes.  If the world falls apart in some kind of disaster, I have enough books around for my kids to read.  My husband and I have a wealth of knowledge about different subjects.  And we have the Bible.  Isn’t this how a lot of people learned to read, more than a century ago?  I’m not worried about stocking up on school books.  I don’t have room for that.

What do you use as your “schoolroom”?  How do your organize your school supplies?  Have you thought of using something you already have in a new way to organize your space?

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About JaimieB

Jaimie lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead known online as An American Homestead. They live with their two sons and her parents Tim and Joann on 50 acres located deep in the American Ozark Mountains.

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  1. What is the name and source of your homeschool curriculum?

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