I’ve been so eager to show you the rest of our home-based classroom, but with a toddling, almost-ten-months-old in the house, I’m not able to leave it set up outside of class time. I’m usually putting Elliot in the sling and getting trays on shelves just before the first preschoolers arrive, and by the time I’ve finished, I’m greeting them and getting on with the day – no time for photos! By the end of class, my two are very ready for lunch, and so photos have not been taken. Fortunately, however, I had a productive late night preparing for our school week, and also learned a thing or two about my camera. The shelves were set up early (or late, rather), and I managed to take pictures that aren’t dark and awful, even with no natural light. They are a bit too bright, but I’m pretty proud of myself all the same ;)
We have a really excellent kitchen for this, because the cabinets and appliances are all on one side, leaving half of the kitchen completely open for shelves and tables. Space is still somewhat limited, however, so we don’t have as much work as I’d like, but this is really working pretty well. While most of the classroom is set up, there are a few little things out of place here that can only be made ready when the sun is up, but I think you get the idea. The view below is from the doorway between the part of the classroom I showed you last week, and the kitchen.
The shelf at left has materials for care of the environment on the lower two shelves and the top two shelves are where snack is found during work time. The shelf at right has art materials on the top, and exercises of Practical Life on the three shelves below.
Because of the lack of space, paper and drawing materials are actually kept on this long table against the wall. Typically, I would prefer to keep these on the shelf, but this works for now.
The Learning Tower is kept at the kitchen sink so children can wash hands for snack. Since space is limited, it doubles as the easel. I was worried this would be distracting for the child painting, but so far it has worked well. Paint and paper are set up in the morning.
Fortunately the fridge is right nearby, so we can use the front of it as a drying rack. Yet another space saver!
Then right around the corner, we have the reading corner set up in a little nook, which happens to be the doorway leading into our office, but the door stays closed, so no one really knows that besides Annabelle. After class, I slide all of this into the living room.
Just around the corner from both the classroom and the reading nook is the bathroom. Next year, we’re going to have one with proper, child-sized fixtures. Can’t wait!
And this morning, in the light of the sun, I snapped a photo from our porch, which serves as a sort of mudroom on school days. Everyone enters here, changes into their slippers, and puts any personal belongings into their cubby before walking in through the door you can see beside the brown table in the photos above. Here’s one naturally lit photo from the morning for good measure :)
And that’s it! It really works quite nicely. One piece of Montessori trivia before I go: can anyone tell what print I have hanging beside the door at adult level, and why I might have put it there?