We now have a homeschool room. Something I never particularly wanted to have, and a concept I have at times resisted. But then we bought this house and with it came this little, boxy room with no purpose in all our other plans for the house.
Wouldn’t it be nice to put the bookshelves in there?
We thought, mindful of the overflowing bookshelves crowding the front room and children’s room of our old house.
We could keep all my homeschool supplies in that closet.
We thought, remembering the manipulatives stored under the bed, in the laundry room and in the attic.
Ooh…and a place to keep projects.
We thought, remembering the work laid out on the kitchen table that became a centerpiece for meals. Because the kitchen table as homeschool classroom doesn’t work so well if the lessons don’t end by dinner time.
And the homeschool room was born. It is overflowing with books, and the manipulatives are stacked helter skelter in the closet. Posters are lying on the floor, and my whiteboard is tucked behind a shelf that doesn’t belong in there. Pull out shelving is planned for the closet to keep my things neat and accessible, but there are many projects in line before that one so the room will have to wait.
As I sort through boxes and try to figure out how to make a temporary home for all this stuff that is not going to be a continual source of frustration until the time and budget allow for the light remodeling, I come to terms with a simple fact.
I never wanted a homeschool room. In fact, I rather liked our boundary-less homeschool space. Calling it a homeschool room brings to mind images of lined up desks and children facing forward, though the room would never fit five desks and there’s little chance of them all facing forward at once, anyway. But all I need is an old analog clock that buzzes hanging on the wall, some fluorescent lighting and the classroom image would be complete.
Oh, and maybe a modern playground just out the window that they never actually get to play on. That brings back memories.
So I think, “What’s in a word?” Why does “a place for all my stuff” have to be a “homeschool room” and why does that have to remind me so strongly of a school room?
And I look at the bookshelves, double stacked with books, thinking of all those boxes still in the garage with books to be unpacked and shelved. I’m running out of room. And it dawns on me. This isn’t a homeschool room. It’s a library. A place to go to choose a book, start a project or just stare out a window. A place for a quiet game, a quick lesson or a needed escape. A small, homeschool library.
Now I just need to teach the kids to whisper.