Many kids will be learning at home this school year. It does not take a lot of money or work to create a homeschool or virtual learning environment but a few little details can make a big impact! I’m sharing how to create a virtual classroom or homeschool set up in a small space.
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Getting Ready for Virtual Learning
This time of year is one of my favorites because I feel like back-to-school is a time for new beginnings and goals. Never did I imagine that this start to the school year would begin with remote learning. While virtual learning is not a new concept for the kids as they learned from home in the spring, starting a school year this way feels very strange.
First, the kids will not get to meet their teachers in the classroom. Also, our kids will not be filling up their back packs and picking out an outfit for the first day. It will really be hard for the first day of school to feel like a “real” first day!
While the kids did just fine with online learning in the spring, I will admit that everyone (including me!) lost our learning “enthusiasm” by the end of the school year. At the beginning of the quarantine, we made sure to get dressed and ready for the day. By the end of the school year, my kids were doing their work in pajamas!
I really want to help the kids stay positive and excited about school. One way I am doing this is by creating cute and fun homeschool set up for the kids!
This past weekend, I spent a few hours rearranging my home office which will not also be a part time classroom. I did not have to spend a lot of money and I was able to gather items I had around the house.
How to Create a Homeschool Set Up in a Small Space
There are a few things to consider when creating a virtual or homeschool set up in a small space.
1. Pick a space that will have the least amount of distractions.
You certainly do not need to spend money to create a homeschool work area! And you most certainly do not need a decorated space. The main thing is that it is a space that is free of clutter and distraction!
It is easy for kids to get distracted from learning at home. So, ideally your homeschool area is away from toys, the TV or any other popular distraction in your house!
2. Find a spot that will be dedicated to school.
This might seem obvious, but you want to find a spot in the house that is solely used for home school.
In the spring when we started virtual learning, my kids mainly used our dining room. Which worked out for a short period of time but it did become a pain to move all of the schoolwork out of the way every night for dinner. Plus, I did not love having our dining room table covered in school stuff all the time.
3. Decide if all of your kids will share one space.
A few weeks ago I mentioned that we were looking for new desks for the kids. We ended up ordering these drawer units from Ikea and then we will add a wood top to the drawers. This shared desk will be for the boys’ room.
However, realistically, I know that my boys will not be able to work together in the same room all day! My second grader will require a lot of attention. Whereas my sixth grader will work mostly independently. Therefore, I decided to use some space in my home office to make a small homeschool set up.
Then, I can keep a close eye on my second grader while I am working in my office. Also, I hope that my older kids will use this homeschool area too just for a change of scenery!
4. Utilize bins and baskets to organize supplies
Make it easy for the kids to reach for their school supplies by organizing those items into small bins and containers. You can find organization bins at the Dollar Tree, Homegoods and Target. Just a few things to keep supplies organized will make a big difference especially if desk space is limited.
5. Create a warm and inspiring place.
You do not need to run out and create a simulated classroom for your kids! But at the same time, if you can bring some elements to make the small space feel like a learning environment. Between a few quick trips to the Dollar Store and Michaels, I was able to find a few inexpensive homeschool decor items that made our room feel special.
6. Shop your home for home school decor
I did not really want to invest money into our homeschool set up. Mainly because I do not know how long my kids will be learning at home. Plus, we did just purchase new permanent desk area in the boys room. This homeschool area is more of a temporary set up. Whether we will be using this set up for a few months or an entire school year remains to be known!
So, before I ran out and purchased anything new for the home school room, I shopped my own home!
Here are a few budget friendly homeschool decor ideas:
- Use books to decorate your home school set up. Books are a FREE way to decorate!
- Display your kids’ artwork as decor! Art provides a colorful and whimsical look to a school room. Kids love seeing their work displayed. The nice thing is that you can rotate the art work for a whole new look.
- Mason jars are a cheap way to organize writing supplies. I found this pencil mason jar at a local sale but this set of school themed mason jars are so cute!
- Chalkboards are another great home school decorating idea!
Decorating Ideas for a Small Homeschool Set Up
I did not need to purchase much for our homeschool set up. But, there are so many cute things at Michaels and Target, that I wanted to buy a few things.
Every year we have a back-to-school dinner so I bought these fun laminated maps and social system poster for the occasion. (Available at Michael’s in store only) These place mats are also perfect for our home school table.
When I spotted this pencil border (only $.99!) I knew I wanted to find a place for it to go. So, I taped the pencil border to the front of the book shelf. My mom was a 2nd grade teacher and I loved going to set up her classroom with her. I remember she would pick a new bulletin board theme each year.
I found the storage boxes at a local close out store. The boxes are great for storing extra supplies!
A little plant always brightens up a room. This plant is the only kind that I can actually keep alive:)
We are so happy with how the homeschool room turned out. All of my kids LOVED it. Despite the start of the school year not going as hoped, I feel a lot better about having a fun and cute space to learn at home!
Looking for more back-to-school posts?
School at Home Decorating Ideas