Well I have been working really hard at giving us more time to go deep into our interests. Bunny has been trying more things with ink (it is not going well) but we are going to try blackberries. Pup has been going non stop with cheetahs. And I have decided that I need to model learning by choosing my own project, so I will be learning about photography. That being said, I really felt we needed to re-evaluate our space and make it work better for an more open creative path. So my sister and I put our head together and came up with a new arrangement! One major thing that I felt we needed and that was an art area. In Project based homeschooling, a major element is having materials available to the children to create things as they learn. So we needed to make sure that thing we available. This meant adding a shelf, and that came with a whole set of new issues- mainly, where to put it? After a LOT of pondering (and a ton of furniture moving), we finally figured it out. Then it was all about putting materials on the shelves. I read about Montessori Moments school room tour and something she said really changed how I felt about organizing materials on the shelves. She said:
“Some people organize the materials by theme. For instance, one shelf will be all of the practical life materials. Another will be all of the language materials. I don’t do this. I place them on the shelves as they fit and are visually appealing. I like to think they will be more well-rounded with their choices this way or will pick something they are less likely to pick because it’s near something they love.”
What a brilliant idea to try. I was noticing that Pup has not been choosing any sensorial work and I am wondering if maybe having things in different areas all together might help make these things appealing. Not to mention, from a decorator stand point, the Montessori materials just beg to be a highlight of the decor! 😉 I do still have a few things I need to add to the walls to make it pretty, but it will happen eventually. But I’m sure you are screaming “Show me pictures already” so, here it is:
Here is Pup’s work table
Here is Bunny’s work table.
Next to Bunny’s desk is the continent boxes.
Next is is our open work table. I really want to use some wooden letters to write words like learn, create, and play above the table, and maybe add some colored frames with clothes pins to display art!
Here is our main shelves for work. As you can see, many of our more colorful works are our for display. I love this more colorful, playful way of making work available. The girls still have full access, its just a prettier way to do it.
Here we have Pink Tower, our easel, Brown Stair (top shelf of the cabinet), metal insets, and our money set.
Number rods, Division board, golden bead, and stamp game.
The box in the middle shelf holds all of the kids homemade books. I also have the clock, sandpaper number, and botany puzzles.
Shelf three has our books to read, the snake game, rainbow puzzle, grammar symbols, and the zoology puzzles,
Inside this cabinet its really boring looking. I think that I need to make labels for all the boxes since Bunny has to look in all of them to find what she wants. In here is the rhyming box, cards and counters, puzzle control chart sets, thermic tablets, colored beads, fraction circles, and geometry sticks.
Shelf four has the multiplication board, globe, and spindle boxes.
Inside has all the practical life trays, and our bells. I finally found a way to have them in reach! 🙂
Here is the other side of the room.
I love this little sitting area alot! It seems to make the room, not just a school room, but also a place where others are welcome too! Plus I the display of materials here is nice. Above this shelf I really want to get some frames or some art to hang there. Plus a part of me is thinking about adding a little bunting! 🙂
I have the sandpaper letters in sight, the bead frame, knobbless cylinders, knobbed cylinders, sound cylinders, puzzles, and binomial and trinomial cubes.
And here is our new art center! Everything is our for them to use if they have a reason or something they want to create. I have taken pictures of each self so you can see better! Plus this is where the red rods found their home! 🙂
Here is paint brushes, Popsicle sticks, wooden pieces, pipe cleaners, googly eyes, bamboo rings, rhinestones, beads, buttons, pom poms, feathers, and a few other things I cant remember! 🙂
Here is our writing materials, markers, pencils, crayons, colored pencils, tape, scissors, glue, pencil sharpeners, etc.
Paper! I have small pieces, full sized pieces, and tracing paper.
The buckets have recyclables (paper towel tubes, wood scraps, boxes, lids, etc). The other bucket is material pieces like felt, cotton, etc.
Next to the art shelf is a bulletin board for display or work. Underneath is our work rugs.
This sweet sign my sister picked up for really inexpensive because the back was broken (can you tell? me neither). I love it! It is perfect for our new space!
So there you have it! This is our “new” space and I think that it will really work out well for us! I do plan on it getting messier then it did before, but so far its working out! Plus, I love that the girls can create to their hearts content, but it isnt all over my whole house! 🙂 Now I know you are dying for more Montessori fun, so I am linking up to Montessori Monday! Stop over there for tons more posts! Happy Schooling!