Frost on the window, flurries in the air ...
Midweek Food Chat

Where do you keep the kids' "school" stuff?


And by "school stuff" I mean the textbooks, workbooks, notebooks (etc.) your kids need in a given week of learning at home. Their curriculum, I guess is what I'm getting at. Do you use a shelf, a cubbie, a bin or maybe a bag, as shown above?

I happened to be taking pictures in the learning room today and I thought I'd show you this spot - I had just neatened it up and it looked bright and cheery. :) Here is where I display seasonal picture books and just below, are parked the three "school" bags. (Lol, I feel compelled to put "school" in quotes. We're not trying to "be" or "do" school - we like the term home learners - but it's just easier to phrase it this way.) On the left we have Bookworm's bag in green, Crackerjack's in red, and finally, Earlybird's on the right in blue. (Isn't it convenient my boys all favor three different, primary colors?) By the way, their real names are embroidered on the other side of each bag. ;)

I should say I'm pretty sure I've shown you all their bags before but it's surely been a while, and I know I have a fair amount of new readers - plus we've only just started using the bags again after quite a long break. Last year we used the baskets in the cubbies shown beneath the bench - but they just got way too heavy! Now those baskets hold paper, coloring books and other miscellaneous softcover books.

We started this year by simply stacking the books on the top of the bench in three separate piles, but that got rather unruly. I finally decided to haul out those old Bean totes (cleaning out the materials left inside from a couple of years ago!) and neatly stacked the boys' materials inside. They work great - though Bookworm's bag is a pretty tight fit, I must say!

Bookworm and Crackerjack's bags hold their Oak Meadow materials and a few other books. Earlybird's bag holds a combination of books, workbooks, magazines, drawing and writing pads, puzzles and picture cards and a big nature encyclopedia. I also have a bag - on the floor to the left of the bench is a large tote which holds all my educational materials: manuals, teacher editions, catalogs, etc. 

Now, truth be told, we have books all over the house - in every room except the bathroom, lol! We have two bookcases in the living room - one holds mostly novels, the other holds mostly reference books (science, history, etc.). We have a bookcase in the learning room which holds all our nature-related books (field guides, idea books and the like), and there is a large bookcase in the family room that holds Figaro's cage as well as Earlybird's trucks, our religion books, and family dvd's. Quite an eclectic collection in that spot!

Earlybird's room has only baskets of books, but the older boys have - oh, what is it now? - three or four bookcases in their bedroom. These hold their ginormous library of personal reading - as well as plenty of Lego creations and video games.

In our basement we also have boxes and boxes of stored books - and they are in desperate need of sorting/clearing out. One of my spring goals is to pare down our book collection drastically. I should probably start now though, if I have even a whisper of hope of getting that chore accomplished!

So back to the bags for a moment - they are working well for us right now. The older boys do their assignments up at the kitchen island - I tend to stack their books on the counter in front of them before they dig in. As they finish a subject, the books go back in the bags. 

Earlybird and I work at the dining room table where we can really spread out. And with him, less clutter the better. I set out one activity at a time and (as much as possible) clean up after we're done before we move onto something else. Too much visual stimulation is distracting for EB.

OK, this post has grown VERY long, so I'd best wrap things up. I hope you've all had a nice Tuesday. The flurries have passed and now we have clear skies at sundown. The light is very pretty glinting off the trees and sparkling on the ice. I find myself itching to take pictures. ;)

As for tomorrow ~ well, they've downgraded the projected snowfall amounts to 9-12 inches (from 10-15) ... thank goodness for small favors, right?

Have a wonderful evening, and thanks so much for stopping by. I will see you all again very soon ...