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Why We Eat Dinner in Our Classroom

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Today’s guest post is by Sarah, a fellow military momma and homeschooler. Enjoy, and don’t forget to stop by and visit her blog!

-Heather

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Last summer, our family moved into a new home.  To be exact, we moved into our 6th home in 4 years.  Crazy stuff like that happens when you’re a military family.

diningroom

This house is much larger than other places we have lived.  It is a charming older home and has the most beautiful back porch that my husband and I fell in love with as soon as we saw it.

One of my favorite features of the house that I dreamed about as we packed and prepared for the move, was that fact that it had a large, finished attic space that I imagined transforming into the cutest little classroom.  I could picture the large colorful rug in the middle of the room, the maps and artwork adorning the walls, the shelves packed full of books and art supplies.  I spent my free time searching Pinterest, gaining inspiration and ideas.  This space was going to be amazing!

And then…we actually moved in.

And I realized that the attic felt really removed from the rest of the house.  Too far from the kitchen, because you know the littlest one is going to need a snack.   Too far from the laundry room, because you know I need to change loads while the kiddos are working.  Too far from the bathroom, because you know a 4-year-old takes long enough already without having to navigate a staircase.

And it was more than that.  It felt disconnected from the rest of the house not just physically, but mentally as well.

I didn’t want our learning to feel contained to just that one room- regardless of how adorable and Pinterest-worthy it was going to be!

And so after much praying and rearranging, I adapted our dining room to also serve as our school room.  It is a place much more centrally located to the rest of the house.  It is a place where we are already gathered 3 times almost every day.  And it is a place that is already so much a part of our daily lives that our learning time has easily become intertwined with real life.

When we sit down to a meal, my daughter’s sight words and memory verse are posted right there for her to recite.  While my little ones eat lunch, I can easily grab one of our books to read to them.

schoolboard

Also, because I walk by it multiple times a day, it helps me to keep the things that we are learning in the forefront of my mind which enables me to better incorporate them into our day-to-day activities.

Perhaps the biggest benefit of having our school room in the dining room, is that it allows my husband to be more involved in our learning.  Even though he is at work during our technical school time, because all of the materials are right there he is easily able to tell what we’re working on.  I love hearing him quiz my daughter and she loves showing off what she’s learned!

Even though our classroom might not be as cute or impressive as some of those others on Pinterest, I am so thankful for the decision that I made to use our dining room as our schoolroom.  It has been absolutely perfect for our family’s needs and educational philosophy.  ­­­­­­And isn’t having the flexibility to do whatever works best for our family what we all love about homeschool anyway?

Cheers to everyone who is eating dinner in their classroom tonight! 

What classroom setting works best for your family?  Comment below, I’d love to know!

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SarahGatespic Sarah is a military wife and homeschooling mama. She is daily striving (and struggling!) to love and serve Jesus by loving and serving those around her. Join her at Servant Mama or follow her on Twitter @servantmama.

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