Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Welcome to our School: Part One

Note:  This is our first school room in our past home. 
 Our new school room tour can be found in this post.

Welcome to our school room!

This is a picture of the door to our school room. We have school in a round room off of the master bedroom. Because we keep our materials in a separate room with a knob lock on the door I put a picture of the boys working together inside the school to remind them that they can ask to go in at any time.

As I said yesterday, I realized it has been a year since I offered anything approximating a "tour." This will be a long post with a lot of pictures. I'll provide photos of the general layout today and then closer photos of the individual shelves tomorrow. I arbitrarily decided to work my way around the room counterclockwise starting from the door.

I do not currently have all of the materials 100% stored according to subject as you will see throughout the tour. However, most of them are and the sensorial shelves are first on the tour. I recently added some black and white photographs of my husband and his brother playing as children at the boys eye-level throughout the room. I have room to add more but need time to dig through some boxes. Above the sensorial shelves is what looks like a bunch of "learning" posters that are usually taboo in a Montessori classroom. These are not for the children, they are for me and I will show a close-up that will make their purpose clear a little later.

Next on the tour is "my" desk and the math shelves. This room doubles as our exercise room so you will see equipment such as the stairstepper pop up occasionally. On top of my desk are drawers of manipulatives. These are multi-purpose and are used for practical life, math, and language. One of these days I have to post about those so you can see what is inside. At this time they are not to be used independently by the children, but will be at some point in the future. Also on my desk is a white bin of "works in progress" and a copy of the book "The Pink What?" I leave that book out because it summarizes the use and purpose of all the primary materials. It was written for parents of children attending Montessori schools. I leave it out for use by guests in the school room.

Ideally, this desk wouldn't be hear at all. A Montessori teacher at work generally doesn't need one in the children's space and it is taking up too much floor space. Our computer used to be in this room and was housed on top of the desk. However, this room is currently 40 degrees Fahrenheit when the space heater is not running and the computer fan will not operate at that temperature. I would love to move the desk to our former dining room but this involves removing the door and its trim. We are possibly going to sell our house this spring and I don't want to make big changes like that if I'm just going to be packing up and moving.

To the left of my desk are the culture shelves and my green chair which does get a lot of use.

Continuing counterclockwise we find the gas stove (another big space-waster) and the start of more exercise equipment. We keep the dressing frames near the stove. The table in front of the stove is where I rotate a messy practical life work. Here it is tweezing corn kernels. Other times it might be a pouring, sweeping, or transfer activity.

The "true" exercise area in the room. However, you will find our bin of work rugs tucked away in here.

Counterclockwise from the television is my "hidden" closet which stores our materials, and then what are now our practical life shelves. These shelves were specifically Me Too's shelves in the beginning. Because he is so young he mainly works on practical life and sensorial materials so they still rather are his shelves in a way.

Now you can see we are nearly around the room and headed back toward the door. This corner is simply a perfect spot for storing the pink tower. The geometric cabinet is here as well because it is where it fits the best. Now confess, how many of the rest of you have a Tie Fighter from Star Wars in your school room?

This last shot brings us to the end. All of these shelves are for language works. In case it isn't clear from previous posts we have floor to ceiling shelves on two walls of the room. The floor and the bottom two shelves in this area are for the boys. The third level of shelves from the bottom are all children's books. All of the other shelves hold my books.

This brings us to the end of the general tour. Come back tomorrow if you want a closer look!

Other posts in this series:

Home of:
The Ultimate Montessori Blog List
The Ultimate Montessori Search Box
The Ultimate Montessori Homemade Materials Collaboration


  1. We keep our TIE fighters in the living room. The library/schoolroom is only for wookkies and small droids. ;)

    Thanks for the tour. I am envious of your school room.

  2. I nominated you for a blog award:

  3. What a beautiful room you all have there! Congrats!