This will be our fourth year homeschooling, since I consider Pre-K my first year. Although, sometimes people ask me when I started homeschooling and I say "at birth", which is technically true. But I didn't use a curriculum until Pre-K. That first year we just used the kitchen table as our school area, and when we moved to the new house (that we have now lived in for two years) we used the upstairs room to do school. I filled it with comfy bean bags and a coffee table, because, let's face it, Kindergarten is really mostly about reading and love of learning, so I wanted it to be comfy and fun.
We moved school downstairs to our dining room last year because every time we went upstairs to do school, Max would spend the majority of his time unpacking the manipulatives. (Counting beads, scrabble tiles, wooden letters, rubber bands for my geoboard, colored pencils, bingo markers... All. Over.) I had special toys for him to play with, they just weren't as exciting as the other stuff. I don't know why it didn't occur to me to buy locks for the cabinets, but it didn't. So, we moved school downstairs for Ella's 1st grade year, and that worked fine until this summer, when Issac started pulling himself up on anything he could find. He discovered our little plastic drawers that we keep our art supplies in, pulled it on top of himself a couple of times, and then discovered he could just open the drawers and entertain himself that way. Surprisingly, neither of these options were acceptable for me. Also, during the course of the last year more and more school supplies and maps and books relocated to the dining room and Paul began complaining that the dining room looked too much like a school room (which it was...) but he believed, that since it was also a public space, we should keep our educational marks upon it to a minimum.
So, I did some brainstorming and decided that the time was ripe to move school back upstairs, this time with cabinet locks and a new set of drawers for supplies, that I think is positioned in such a way that the baby will be unable to terrorize it.
There is also a cedar closet upstairs, which used to be kind of a catch all for pillows and blankets, we also keep our extra twin mattress in there. We still have all our extra blankets and pillows up there, but I rearranged it so that we have a cozy little reading nook.
Here's a picture of our table. The kids are old enough that a desk or table is really the best surface for their work. No more bean bags. You can also see the cabinet locks. I keep the stuff in there that we don't use daily. The other supplies are in a little cabinet under the table; hopefully that will keep it safe from the baby-monster.
Our whiteboard, calendar, maps, and filing cabinet. Also a soft chair for me to sit in while I crack the proverbial whip. Yes there are two maps of the United States. I bought the top one and then a few months later found a matching set with a US and World Map. The World map is on the other side of the window. I decided you really don't need that many pictures of the school room, so I didn't include that corner of the room. Those little black things on the wall are binder clips that we use to hang up work that we are proud of. Usually art work. Also I hung a bunch of bugs on the wall because I found them on clearance at a homeschool store, and thought, why not? So we'll be practicing our bug identification a bit, too.