Creating your homeschool space to invite learning

creating a homeschool space that inspires learning

When it comes to crafts supplies and learning resources, so many of us keep them safely locked away in unreachable cupboards or shelves; partly because some things are expensive and we don’t want to risk damage or loss, and partly because we don’t want a hot mess to clear up and we don't trust the kids enough to give them free access. But in doing this, we need to ask what message are we giving to our children about our learning environment?

Something to consider is when things are out of sight, they are often out of mind. 

When we have things hidden away in storage, how often are they thought about? How often do we ourselves make the conscious decision to get them out?

Whether you're reading this as a homeschool or school parent, I know if you're a responsible and interested Mum, you 100% want your children to enjoy learning and discovering new things.

What message does your environment at home give them? What does your learning space say?

  • Does it encourage the children to explore and discover new things?
  • Does it invite to creativity?
  • Does it welcome ideas and thinking?
  • Does it send a message that you not only support but value their efforts and offerings?
  • Does it support yours and their learning goals?
  • Is your child able to access everything she needs, or does she need to ask for assistance?
  • When she does ask for something out of reach, do you provide what is being asked for, or do you say “not now” because either you’re too busy to go get it, or you just don’t have the energy to supervise right now?
  • When your child has finished working with something is he able to clear up after himself, or do you need to go fix that?
Most of us want our children to develop independent skills in all areas of life and learning. What we should understand if we want to support our children in taking control of their own work as they grow, is that the environment we provide can either help or hinder that goal.

No matter whether our child is 5 or 15, they are often capable of a lot more than we give them credit for and also a lot more responsive to the messages we give them.

Take a look at your homeschool space, and ask yourself what environment it is cultivating?

All too often, so many of us proclaim we want our children to be independent learners, and we want to help provide the skills they need to be able to do so.

However, if the learning environment doesn’t send out that message to our children that they can indeed go and discover, create and explore independently, what are we telling them?

Pay attention to your homeschool space and the message it sends to your children.

My family is in our 9th homeschool year alhamdulillah, and I have to tell you, it sometimes feels as though I’m always trying to reinvent our learning space. Just when I think I have the perfect lay out, things change; kids grow and new ideas are needed.

our homeschool art and craft supplies out on the shelves so the kids can easily get them

Some of you may already have a beautiful large room dedicated to everything homeschool....I know you do because I've seen the Instagram pictures Allahumma barik! And if that is you, still go and have another look and check that it is continuing to serve its purpose to meet your goals inshaAllah.

Some of you like me, may live in smaller homes, and I realise it is a much tougher task to design your homeschool space, however it is certainly not impossible. You just need a little imagination.

Honestly, it is not the size of your home or the scale of your budget that matters in creating a thriving, inspiring, inviting homeschool environment. What does matter is you and what you bring to the table.

You are so important to the atmosphere set at home. When your children see that you care about learning and creating new things, they will want to do more to show you new discoveries and ideas they're making.

Where your attention goes, they will follow.

If you yourself live a life which promotes discovery and growth, they will imitate that, and follow you. Partly because that will just seem like the natural thing to do, and partly because they thrive on your attention and will do anything to get your approval.

  • Take advantage of the libraries
  • Get into the local country parks to connect with nature
  • Plan trips to museums and local places of interest
  • Have an area in the home filled with whatever craft resources you can afford; plain paper, coloured paper, different sized paper, scratch paper, pattern paper, scrap paper, water colour paper, card, glue, watercolour paints, poster paints, acrylic paints, oil pastels, sequins, stamps & ink, washi tape, blank canvases, felt-tip pens, pencil crayons, water colour pencils, chalk pastels, cardboard boxes, empty containers, packaging, washed out empty food tins, beads, stencils, clay, wood scraps, zig-zag scissors, scrap magazines, fabric scraps.
  • Bring in new books to the house; they don't need to be new, second hand or borrowed is fine....the point is to see that continuing bringing into the home new knowledge to benefit from.
  • Pay attention to what your children are interested in, and help facilitate their interest by bringing things they need to them, or taking then to places they need to go.

Your homeschool task is to create a welcoming learning space:

I want to invite you to have a look at your homeschool space, and think about how it invites your children to discovery, creativity and learning.

When I say learning space, I’m not talking about a homeschool “classroom”, but rather your environment.

 Your homeschool is your home, not a school. And the properties of home are very much different to that of school (remember home comes before school in homeschool)
So when addressing your learning space, think of home and think of learning; and see how those can fit together.  Do not think of school.

Ask (and to help pull out your thoughts I'd encourage you to write down):
  • What do you want your overall homeschool environment to say to your children?
  • What does it currently say and how does that match up to what you want?
  • How can you transform or reinvent your space so that it sends out a warm invitation to your children to encourage their learning growth and creative workings?
  • What do you need?
  • Can you get everything you need?
  • Can you identify cost effective ways to reach your desired goals?

To help you, I’ve uploaded a page from the Homeschool Planner for you to use. Just click into the highlighted text {here}to grab your free copy and start planning your homeschool learning space.

The biggest take away I want to give you, is our children's learning starts with us. It begins with how we show what we value, and how we translate that into encouragment through the environment we provide. So make sure yours reflects and nurtures your family's goal.

free printable worksheet to help you design your homeschool space

Discover more about the importance of creating a homeschool space and get help designing yours...

If you're a new homeschooler and would like to learn more about setting up a positive homeschool space, my new online workshop "Homeschooling with Confidence; a beginners guide to starting homeschool" looks at this as part of the syllabus. The workshop doesn't officially launch until April but you can download the information guide here: Homeschooling with confidence; a beginners guide to starting homeschool brochure.

This is the first in a two part series of month long workshops (all completely online), designed to help you build the Muslim homeschool of your dreams inshaAllah. Whilst this first one is ideal for new homeschoolers and Mums wanting to begin as it guides you through the nuts and bolts of getting started, the second workshop later this year is designed for Mums at all stages of homeschool so look out for information on that when it comes out soon inshaAllah.

I'd love to meet you there!

Creating a homeschool environment that inspires learning

1 comment:

I welcome your comments and feedback!
However due to the number of spammers, I have added word verification to allow genuine readers to leave a genuine comment or question.
Your comment will be published once it has been approved.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...