Friday, July 22, 2011

New Schoolroom

When we moved into our house 8.5 years ago, we decided that an extra room we had on the first floor would be a gameroom.  However, we didn't really have anything to put in there to make it a gameroom, so it just became a sort of catch-all (read "junk") room. There were bookshelves, Griff's LP's, a desk, my sewing cabinet, and a weight bench (yes, actually used). With no true definition for the room, and only occasional use, it became filled with more and more... junk. I cleaned it out several times over the years, but never seriously, and it would always return to its former glory (or lack thereof).

Meanwhile, we started homeschooling 5.5 years ago, and we did school all around the house. Kitchen, den, dining room... And the gameroom was ignored because, well, it was going to be a gameroom. Finally, this summer, I decided enough was enough. The gameroom was no more. It would now be the schoolroom. And the great purge began.

In the interest of complete disclosure, here's a "before" shot.

(Oh, my word, that's just terrible.)

I got rid of books, curriculum I knew we would never use, and piles of paper. Things were moved to an upstairs storage room, and many items were donated. I was brutal! I wasn't able to get rid of some bigger items, but they are not interfering with the room's new purpose, so they will stay for now.

Here's the final result.

The desk in the corner is the desk that was originally in there. I cleaned it up and rotated it so that I can keep an eye on a certain teenage boy who is easily distracted. More about the shorter bookshelf and items on the desk later. The kids will work at the not-so-pretty brown table.

Bookshelves are filled with books, curriculum for spring semester, and scrapbooks. That 6-drawer unit contains craft supplies that I couldn't fit in the room's closet. See the weight bench? Yes, it's still in the room. There's no place else to put it and it is still used by Griff, so it stays.

Griff's LP's and my sewing cabinet, with Ruth's latin posters on the wall. I'd love to have a big, overstuffed chair in that corner, so I'm hoping to find a different storage place for the LP's and possibly sell my sewing cabinet.

You can see our whiteboard hanging on the wall. The door at the far left of the picture is the closet, which now holds most of my scrapbook and art/craft supplies. There is a door to the right of the closet that leads to the rest of the house. The french doors lead to our back porch.

My desk. :) Actually, it was my mom's desk, and she technically gave it to Griff years ago, but I have now claimed it for my own. (he hasn't used it since we moved into this house). You can see 3 Desk Apprentices from Staples. The kids' are on the left and hold all of their school books. Mine is on the far right, and holds teacher manuals and tests.

The bookshelf was in the dining room when our school was done in there, but I moved it in here when I decided to convert the room. The top holds the boxes the kids use to hold their personal pencils, ruler, protractor, etc. I use the digital frame with our artist study. Artwork from that artist will rotate in the frame. The top shelf holds extra books I want the kids to read. On the left are Ruth's American History supplement books. On the right are Robert's geography books. That plastic box holds notebook paper. The middle shelf holds a dictionary, thesaurus, bibles, blank index cards (in a box) and some miscellaneous papers of mine. The bottom shelf holds Robert's DVDs and binders with class notes and handouts.

The one thing this room does not have is a dedicated space for Robert to watch his DVDs and take notes. I think the best solution is going to be a portable DVD player that he can watch at the table, but if anybody looking at this has a better idea, leave me a note in the comments.

This room is not going to win any design awards, but it's very functional and I'm very happy with how it turned out.