One unexpected pleasure of homeschooling has been amassing all the school supplies, co-mingling with my own.
Caleb was organizing the supplies in our tray the other day, and here they all are, neatly laid out.
Before the pandemic, and before homeschooling, most of the stationery supplies for the kids were floating around loose in Caleb’s room, or in a few different drawers. The kids generally knew where things were and how to get them, but they often had to ask if they could use this or that if they were taking things from my desk drawers, or maybe had a hard time finding the glue when they needed it.
Now though, everything is on our shared work table. There are no rules, other than not using pens in my pen roll or things in my pile, but that has not actually ever been a problem, since they generally know what’s available to use and what’s not. I feel like maybe kids just naturally have a good sense of ownership.
It has been interesting to see how having abundant tools and supplies here has helped the kids, even Naomi, become a bit more independent. They know where they can find a pencil to begin homework, where to find an eraser, where to find scissors and glue for certain homework tasks. Even when they’re not doing homework, they know where they can get some tape for a cardboard sword, or scissors to cut up some string. Having a lot of pencils has meant losing pencils, or breaking pencil tips, or fighting over the same ones are not problems. Every once in a while, Caleb will sharpen them all. They sharpen pencils with a 2-step sharpener, they use the scissors without supervision, they stick stickers on their forehead, they use the markers to decorate their creations.
I am loving it! Having one spot for it all has meant it’s been easier to clean up and easier to use. It’s also been easier for me, everything within reach: highlighters, scrap paper, stapler, tape. Letter writing supplies, lip balm, dog treats.