22 July 2012

Learning & Working From Home

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Not Back to School Blog Hop

Do I need a school room?

This home is small: less than 1100 square feet, plus five-hundred, undecorated square feet rather in need of repair which includes an "enclosed" porch, a front porch, a potting shed, and an office off the garage; yet, it seems much larger because it basically has no hallways except in the carport.  My spouse works from home, and my daughter is learning at home.

We don't have designated rooms for either work or learning, because it is small and because we have to be flexible to accomodate each other. However, the spaces we do have are conducive to learning or working.

We put together this library ourselves, and it is part of my daughter's suite; one has to walk through the library to get to my daughter's bedroom, but this room serves as a space for the entire family because it is the center of the sleeping side of the house. The paints, color, and furniture between the two rooms are coordinated to create a seamless suite.

baskets for storage
closed cabinets for books and media appliances
drawers and trunks for storage

I designed the desk with parts from IKEA. IKEA has an area that has various parts to build a unique desk. I'll show you how someday in another post.)

My daughter likes to work at this desk in her bedroom for two reasons.  It has a huge surface and beneath it has baskets for storage.

  She also has a couple of comfortable chairs for reading that have a basket beneath.  I have since bought some trim and finished out the the new door.  You would not believe what was there when we moved in: an interior door, beat up and open to the elements outdoor, in other words you could see outside through the gaps, and (secured?) with a locker lock. 

(My spouse's chair is in the dining room with the library behind.)  My spouse likes to sit here with his lap top.  Floors are still a work in progress.

(This is how my daughter's bedroom connects to the library - through the door on the left.  We use baskets and built-ins for storage.  This system is removable.  It hangs on a metal bar, so one can take it if he or she moves.

Everyone in the home enjoys the library, media, playroom.  Unfortunately, it cannot hold all the books.  The books are in every room, in the closet, in the baskets, on the porch, and in baskets under the bed.  There are dress-up clothes in the trunk.


We also have an "enclosed" porch that I haven't had time to repair or decorate or re-inclose.  On the porch we have this large chalkboard that was easy to hang because of the exposed studs.  My daughter has not used it in a couple of years; it was tricky to move because she wanted the information and formulas to be memorialized. It got a little smudged.

We all use the porch. My daughter paints and plays on it, but also the laundry room is there; it is also a place to eat breakfast or read a book, make a mess, and sometimes it is a work area for my spouse.  It is the room with the most projects going at once.

She is also a community learner; each day of the school week she has one or up to three learning classes or individual mentoring sessions outside the home. On the weekend she has a friend that she hangs out with. She reads everything and loves to write.  This is a quote from C.S. Lewis and it is one of my philosophies that I've shared with her.

"I am a product of...endless books. My father bought all the books he read and never got rid of any of them. There were books in the study,...in the drawing room,...in the cloakroom, books (two deep) in the great bookcase on the landing, books in a bedroom,...books of all kinds..., books readable and unreadable, books suitable for a child and books most emphatically not. Nothing was forbidden me. In the seemingly endless rainy afternoons I took volume after volume from the shelves.” C.S. Lewis

So you see we really don't need one room, not with one child and not with our life-style.  I did have a beautiful school room once, but we had a large home then, and I was homeschooling my daughter and her older cousin, and I needed to contain the mess because the house was so big.  I find that with a smaller home, one sees the mess that needs addressing before it is out of control.

I've had a school room and now I am going without a schoolroom; I like both, but it depends.

I think a school-room or no school-room depends on current needs, how one uses a home, how many children there are, how they learn, learning philosophy, type of curriculum, budget, flexibility, how big the house is, how much time one spends at home, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.  

Don't you think?

There is no one correct answer.

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  1. What a beautiful home. I love all the white! I think they way you educate your daughter sounds wonderful. I have an 'only daughter' too. I will be back to visit!

  2. Loved seeing your space. Thanks for linking up today.

  3. Your home is beautiful and your daughter is lovely (and talented I can see!!). Though I have a very different life from you, you have inspired me! Thank you for sharing.


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