A few friends have decided to embark on their journey of Homeschooling this year! I’m really excited for them, although they seem rather nervous and jittery. Of course I told them they will get used to a routine by the end, but their main concerns as mamas starting their homeschooling journey is, ‘What essentials do we actually need?’ So this led me to this week’s post on Homeschool Essentials to help you get Organised. It happened to be a Tuesday so I combined it with our Tuesday Teaching Tips series so you get to watch a video of all the things in our drawers too. There’s a special video on Phonics/Literacy and Maths essentials for under 5’s – or at least things to get you started which I will be sharing soon. Just remember, we built up our collection of ‘stuff’ over a year of homeschooling, you can decide by picking and choosing what works from you from the collection I’m sharing! Happy choosing and buying!
Some things you may want to consider whilst setting up is:
- Think of the space you can work in. Do you have a spare area/room or workspace you can convert for the homeschooling. Some people are fine with using their dining table or parts of their living room. Some homeschoolers like to have a whole room (where possible) dedicated to their homeschooling, catered to their children’s and their needs. Whatever you have, work with it. Remember its a gradual process and not everything will be perfect with day one.
- Having a bookshelf is handy for books in easy reach for your children, you can add a rug and some cushions nearby for a cosy book corner.
- Do your children need a workspace to sit and work at? The dining table can work just fine. Or you can buy child friendly tables from IKEA to help too.
- I have kept a desk area for myself, for my laptop, printer and a place for a folders – remember YOU are part of the homeschool as much as the kids.
- A few other essentials I can’t live without is a printer, plastic wallets, sandwich bags, laminator + pouches, guillotine/paper cutter and of course a small whiteboard.
Watch the video below to find out how I organise our Homeschool Essentials. You will find a list of all the items mentioned and more below the video.
I bought 2 IKEA Trofast frames + Trofast Storage boxes. You can decide on what you have and how many you need. But to give you a rough I idea, I bought 16 smaller Trofast storage boxes (20 x 30 x 10 cm) and 2 of the larger ones (42x30x23 cm) to fit in my 2 Trofast frames. The smaller storage boxes work out to £2 each and the larger ones to £3 each. I have had them for way over a year and they are all in tact and very sturdy, so look for something long lasting when deciding what to buy for your storage systems.
In my first tray I put the following things, mainly to keep out of reach from the children:
- Stapler + staples
- paper clips
- split pins
- craft knife
- permanent markers
- post it notes
- white tack/blue tack
- sello tape, masking tape, duct tape,
- pencil sharpner (MUJI)
- sticky labels
- I keep my sello tape dispenser and pens and pencils pot on top of the shelf
Scissors + Glue
In my second tray I keep the scissors and glue sticks and all things related. I also found the IKEA GLIS storage boxes handy (£2 for a pack of 3) and keep my small children’s scissors and glue sticks in these boxes. So in this tray I have:
- Scissors Box
- small sellotape + washitape
- Glue sticks and glue spreaders
- PVA glue bottles
Arts & Craft (Tray 1)
I have 2 trays dedicated to Arts & Crafts (because I have so many different things related to it). I used 2 GLIS boxes from IKEA. So here’s what’s in tray 1.
- a box of ribbons – I even cut off the ones I find in clothes!
- a box of sequins – we bought our sequins from 99p stores/B&M and still have loads a year on
- wooden lollisticks
- assorted stamp cutters – kids love these
- styrofoam balls
- a box of miscellaneous craft items left over from craft activities!
Arts & Craft (Tray 2)
In Tray 2 – I have the following things:
- a box of loose glitter and glitter pens
- glitter glue
- googly eyes
- colourful plastic straws
- cotton wool
- coloured sand + shakers
- shredded gift wrapping paper
- sandwich bag of fine paint brushes + paint tray
Playdough Mats & Cutters
In this tray, I like to keep all things playdough related – mostly minus the playdough 🙂 Sometimes I will add a few tubs of bought playdough but mostly we make our playdough at home, so its kept in the fridge. So here’s whats inside:
- playdough mats – simply print and laminate whatever you like!
- number cutters
- letter cookie cutters
- a box of assorted playdough cutters
- Fun Dough Arabic Alphabet Cutters set
- cookie cutters star shape + flower shape
- Clay tools
Coloured Foam, shiny paper + more (crafts)
In this tray I like to keep my craft paper separate from normal plain paper or card. So it has all kinds of crafty paper:
- shiny paper
- A4 plastic folder full of tissue paper and other craft paper
- coloured foam
- brown paper
- shiny corrugated card
- shiny glittery paper
This tray is everything and anything to do with textiles. This is what we like to keep inside:
- plastic needs for threading
- coloured cotton wool
- coloured felt
- white cotton fabric/cross stitch fabric
- other things to include are lacing activites
Felt Tips, Crayons, Colouring Pencils
This is essentially one of the bottom trays to allow easy access for the kids. In here, I have put crayons that are broken or mixed up from the packs into boxes. Kept felt tips in pencil cases and colouring pencils separate too. Here’s everything inside this tray:
- crayons in boxes
- colouring pencils
- felt tip pens in pencil cases
- kids sharpeners
Have I missed anything out? What essentials are in your homeschool that you can’t live without? Share in the comments below.
*We have been given a 7 months free subscription to access Twinkl resources – all comments, views and recommendations are my own and resources are selected based on our homeschool learning.
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