SummaryWe asked Seton moms for tips on getting the schoolroom organized because getting organized creates order which can make all the difference.
From Susan O’Connell (Title Art – Above):
Set rules in the beginning. Lots of bookshelves organized for Science, History, Religion, Math games and math manipulatives, Reading, Art, etc. I gave up trying to keep things in a cabinet for simplicity, it’s all out and in view for them to use.
I agree with the rolling carts. (next page) Very nice!
From Sarah Letendre Morin:
Routine, schedule, writing things down/visual reminders, a timer (in addition to the clock), grace, frequent sacrament receiving, and a good cup of coffee.
We use post-its, work out a schedule for each subject (order and approximate time for each class), print and laminate the schedule, have it posted. Each child has a copy.
We try to coordinate supplies with colors so it’s easier. Each child had a section of a bookcase until we moved, then we needed to change gears with a new house, so most of the children’s supplies are in their backpacks.
A Sense of Order
They have assigned seating and a uniform (so they know it’s not home play time), we have a name for our school, and the kids start the year with writing expectations for themselves and for me, as teacher, to refer back to throughout the year (especially good for middle school kids who need to be reminded of their responsibilities).
We have a board to post our parish bulletin or any flyers to remind us for church activities, post recent artwork (themed for the month), wall calendar, and appointment cards. We also have a whiteboard and chalkboard for when those are needed/appropriate.
We also try to have a routine with basic house chores that need to be done (i.e., dishes, laundry, animal care, etc.). We attempt to get into good sleep patterns and chore routines ahead of starting the books so we can adjust to focusing on school as its own thing.
We offer prayer first each morning and attempt to have a balanced flow to our time in the afternoon, often using 10 minutes for a chore or 30 minutes of free time and switch between the two so it gets things done/moving.
I should add we are caretakers for our moms, plus we have a farm, so life can get busy quickly, with unexpected things so this all helps balance some of the crazy mess that comes with life.