Home is Where School is

Our first years of homeschooling were quite relaxed with just my two daughters.  I had lots of time to turn a small corner of the lower level of our then split-level house into an area just for them.

Through that door in this “rec room” is the covered garage where the girls enjoyed messy crafts, learned to bike, or shot baskets.  A few steps outside and there’s nature everywhere to explore.

A couple of years into homeschooling, we had baby #3 followed by a move to another house when he was only 6 months old.  A year and a half after the move, we had baby #4.  We still managed to somehow establish a “base” for doing school work in the 2-story house’s walkout basement.

Since only the two girls were officially homeschooling and their work only took up the mornings, “school” was mostly contained in the basement.  However, activities such as science experiments or listening to mom read still brought them upstairs to the kitchen, the dining room, or our comfy couches.

Too long indoors is never a good thing.  So, when the rain was letting up a bit in wet Vancouver, the backyard was always an excellent place to expend energy (think the girls are pretending to be fencing here right after they rode their bikes and just before they go for a dip) as well as to witness nature first hand.

Another 2 years in the second house, we had to move provinces when baby #4 was also about 6 months old.  We rented out a place for a couple of months while house-hunting. It was very bare except for sufficient beds, a kitchen table, and a lone coach.  We did school in the kitchen table (no picture) as well as on the carpet floor lots of times with the toddler and the baby free to roam around.

By fall, we moved into what was going to be our permanent home for the next 4 years.  The bonus room above the 2-car garage of the brand new 3-level Morrison home became our very large school room.

Moving around the house during the school day was always more fun though.  We made sure the kids had their own private work place in their rooms when needed.

Definitely, the couches in the living room were still a convenient spot to read.

When it was warmer in cold-er Calgary, the outdoors was a great idea for a change.

The last year in this current house brought us baby #5. When he was almost a year old, a move brought us across the Pacific.  We found ourselves leasing a fully furnished place this time while custom building our own.  The rental property had a main level masters’ bedroom which we turned into a den.  The walk-in closet was perfect for storage.  It didn’t have a proper table but here’s one of the kids making a desk out of the existing coffee table.

And if there was no good enough table, there was always the floor for keeping the youngest preoccupied or even the older ones doing art and music together at once.

The absence of a school table in the den was not such a problem. There were others around the house.  The dining table was great for breakfast and school.  The mahjong paper in the mahjong table doubled as scratch paper and doodle pad.

Or the nice little nook like this mini bar in the main kitchen that faced the tiny pool was just fine.

Yes, we brought our trusty leather couches with us.

Another interim period before moving into our constructed house was spent in two different condominium buildings.  Wherever it was more efficient to turn on an air conditioning unit made the choice for a “school room”.

Finally, here is our current study room (of course, it is hardly ever in this state of orderliness) on the upper level of our 2-story home.  It contains a nook for computer use, a whole wall of enclosed shelves, our old glass kitchen table from the Calgary house nook, and a built-in window seat (w/ more storage underneath).  The room opens to a small balcony where the kids also enjoy hanging around.

And when this did not feel outdoor enough, there is always the lanai downstairs (when the windy weather drove away the flies/insects).

When it gets too warm in the study room or when the older girls need it to be quiet, our good old couches are still the most suitable lounging place to get comfortable with our books.



  1. Pingback: Growing Minds and Bodies « living and learning

  2. Winnie

    Reblogged this on living and learning and commented:

    My allergies are acting up and/or I’ve caught a bug. I’m getting the feeling I have to rest. It’s a comfort I can always rely on remembering the past to encourage me to keep on. And personally, this is one of my foremost reasons for continuing to write here.

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