Skip to main content

My Imperfect Homeschool.

Sonlight Blog Party
 The folks at Sonlight are hosting a blog party!  I thought perhaps I shouldn't participate, because the theme this month is, "share your best homeschool organization tips."  And I just don't organize all that terribly well.  I can find everything I need (important skill to have!) but I just don't have a dedicated school-room, storage cubes from IKEA, and cute colour-coded themes for the room, posters on the wall, that sort of thing.

But I decided to go ahead, make the jump, and blog what I'm really up to here anyway.  And the reason for that is simple:  I know myself.  And I know people like me.  If I'd've seen the expensive get-ups "everyone else" has for home-educating their children, I might've been a bit put off the whole idea.  So I want to encourage you if you're thinking about homeschooling, that you really don't need that much stuff.  Some books and worksheets, yeah.  But nothing super-elaborate in terms of organizing and filing things away.

I've been homeschooling for over nine years now, so if I were ever going to get my act together and splurge on something like that, I'd have done it by now.  Instead, I use a bookshelf for our "daily" things.  Because I've homeschooled for quite some time and my older children are done with expensive materials, stuff for future years is stored in Rubbermaid containers.  Ever see Hoarders?  Not that bad.  But just imagine several of these in my basement.

Woodjie and Rose's folder.  Emperor's folder is above it.
The one thing I did get from IKEA are the magazine holders you see in the top picture.  That's it.  I use them to hold the textbooks and things we use on a daily basis.  I spent maybe $10 on those.  We work through workbooks and I pop loose sheets into a binder so I can prove I wasn't just sitting around all day with the kids watching Wild Kratts on TV.

Yeah.  A tote basket in the corner holds little crafty things, and I pop dry-erase boards behind it.  It looks a little messy but it works for us.

Games!  And assorted educational "manipulatives" and stuff.  (And unburnt candles.  My system for figuring out where everything is is probably different from the one you'd use in your home...)

My dining room table without schoolwork.  But you can see Woodjie's soft "woobie" cloth and his weighted vest.  (He's autistic and these things help him concentrate/ not pull his hair sometimes.)


  1. It looks perfectly acceptable to me and just think, once they're finished with schooling, you won't have tons of specialised furniture etc to get rid of.

    1. Aww... thanks! It doesn't look anything like "everyone else" has on Pinterest, though. I swear Pinterest will make ya feel inadequate any day of the week. :)

    2. Yep. I've been to Pinterest exactly once and never again.

  2. I don't mind a reasonable amt of hoarding, it not bad for a trip down memory lane in the future, but it can take over.

    1. I like a little clutter as well! Just enough to be comfortable but not over-run.

  3. I'm glad you joined in! I think there are fewer Pinterest parents than there are people like us who simply find a system that works and roll with that, even if it's not the most attractive system ever. Function over form in these kinds of situations seems perfectly legitimate to me. Life is busy enough as it is. ...besides, the Pinterest "Nailed It" community is rather large, so do what works [grin].


    1. I could seriously do an entire "nailed it" blog on my homeschooling efforts alone...

  4. Congratulations! You won the prize for the November blog party. Email me with your mailing address and I'll get your prize package out to you! Thanks for joining in! kcook @


Post a Comment

Non-troll comments always welcome! :)

Popular posts from this blog

Reading Curriculum: ABeka Book and BJU Press

Did you know that in the state of Missouri, homeschoolers must teach reading as a separate subject?  I don't know how anyone could homeschool well without teaching their child to read... but OK. 

I got many of my ABeka books used and collected them over time.  I'm glad I came across these readers early in my homeschooling years.  It teaches children to read step-by-step.  I don't think I've seen a more effective reading program for the elementary years.  The children love the stories, and what I appreciate about them is that there is a rich and varied language even in simple-to-read books in this series. 

My set is pretty old, and some are even from the 1960's and no longer listed in the reading series.  I think if I had to do things over again somehow, I think I'd just spend on a curriculum set and be done with it.  That's the thing, though, with homeschooling.  By the time you figure out what the perfect curriculum is for you, your children have graduate…

Holiday Gifts for the Homeschool Teacher!

Merrymaking hint:  leave this post up on your phone/ computer for your family to "accidentally" find!  Let the magic begin!

 All teachers love a little appreciation every now and then, including homeschoolers.   I don't know about you, though, but I don't want any apple crap.  So first rule:  no apple crap! 

Otherwise I'm pretty open.  I love getting gifts, even if it's just something small or simple.  One thing I love is when my children want to help out and make lunch or clean up or put their laundry away.  Or just behave themselves and get their math done.  This is a really big thing when you think about it.  

And from the adults in my life, the gift of coffee always shows love - or rather, someone not wanting an "I need coffee" emergency in the middle of winter after a big snowstorm.  Somehow, I always have a lot of coffee in my pantry during the winter months.  (Guess why.) Thanks, D! 

My gallery of homeschool appreciation pics:

Homeschooling is NOT So Hard.

I wish I'd have known this starting out. I wish I'd have known that it's actually LESS work to just homeschool your child, than to be an "involved parent" at school.

We've enjoyed elementary school with our older boys. *Most* of the teachers were actually pretty competent and caring (the others, I save for another blog post, another day...). We had the children involved in extra activities like the Spanish Club or Service Club, or choir, and they got a fair bit out of the experience.

But it's a LOT of work.

You get about a ton of worksheets that must be done by a certain time. Usually on a day when you're sick or have no time. You get the phone calls about this or that, and about a zillion sheets per day that sometimes contain important news, so you MUST go through them daily. The schools also *love* to throw in half days, teacher in-service days and early dismissals. Not so bad, unless you have children at more than one school and the schedu…