disclosure: This post is sponsored by the Carpet & Rug Institute.

We just found out that our local schools are starting out online.

Right now, for the first three weeks, online learning is the current education situation.

My online learners are teenagers in high school, but my sister-in-law has three littles and one kind of not-so-little-any-more student that live at her house.

We’ve all been living footloose and fancy-free with our summer vacation, but school starts in a week here in Texas.

Just between us?

I’m an amazing aunt and Westleigh is an amazing cousin and we wanted to start their online school year off right, so we went shopping and surprised them with new school supplies.

And helped them get the room ready for online school and whatever the rest of 2020 holds.

If you need help creating a space for online learning?

Here are some simple tips for turning a room into a classroom.

1. Furniture

Space and flexibility is key when setting up a space for online learning.

We added one comfortable chair with plenty of back support and a desk as command central in the space for my sister-in-law. We also plan on adding lightweight chairs that are stackable and foldable mini tables (versions of TV trays) to allow flexibility with furniture in the space.

There’s enough room in the space and the furniture is lightweight enough that students can move the chairs and mini tables where needed and my sister-in-law can use the main desk to facilitate all the different classes.

2. Welcoming learning environment

We made sure that the room is light and bright and airy with warm and cozy carpeting on the floor. The carpet provides a soft cushion for little feet and helps reduce noise in the learning environment.

Carpet also helps improve air quality in the space and it’s so easy to keep clean for students with asthma and allergies.

Students can also spread out on the floor because there’s a cozy surface to read or work on, too.

3.Organization

It’s SO IMPORTANT to have organization in a space when you are turning a room into a classroom.

I love this entire wall of cabinets that we added to the space.

Each child has their own cabinet for their schoolwork and paperwork.

Depending on what happens for the rest of the school year, we may add baskets to the upper cabinets if we need additional space for supplies and books.

4. Supplies

Even though we are headed online, we still wanted to shop for school supplies.

It keeps a sense of “normal” to the school year and the space.

Everyone needs a little encouragement and a cute notebook to face the school year ahead.

Pencil cases, backpacks, markers, pens, folders and new number 2 pencils all help get a classroom (and our online learners) ready for classes and homework.

5. Inspiring creativity

This is an intangible element of the classroom that’s the most important. The room needs to have flexibility, warmth, comfort, light, and organization. Cozy carpeting, orderly bookshelves, flexible workspaces and a dedicated space for the classroom help promote successful online learning.

All of these elements help inspire creativity in the students and prepare them for the school year ahead.

No matter the challenges.

No matter the school year ahead.

No matter what 2020 brings our way.

Our pencils are ready.

Our schoolroom is ready.

But most importantly? Our students are ready.

Here’s to an amazing school year.

Let’s go.

PS Did I mention all of our students are ready? Even the furry ones. 🙂

And now? To celebrate a brand new school year? The Carpet & Rug Institute is giving away $500 to one lucky winner. For a chance to win a $500 Visa Gift card, visit www.beautyofcarpet.com

disclosure: This post was written in collaboration with CRI.

All opinions are my own.

Please see my disclosure page for more information.

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Comments

  1. Image for Amy McDonald Amy McDonald

    Don't mean to be a Debbie Downer, but isn't carpet a bad idea for people with asthma and allergies? I love a good area rug, don't get me wrong. My daughter's pediatrician had me get rid of rugs when she was young and going through allergy testing.

  2. Image for TERESA GONZALES TERESA GONZALES

    Love your ideas! So helpful for those who need home classrooms during the pandemic. Good example for what you need for college too. I felt that was my hardest transition from high school to college (had not realized that I would need all the supplies and organization until I started!)

  3. Image for Kris Kris

    Good ideas. For those of us with very small spaces, lap desks are a good option. And headphones/earbuds to keep things quiet for everyone.

  4. Image for Leslie Leslie

    So now you are using professional models in your photos!? Honestly, I thought all three were models until I recognized the little ones from local soccer and basketball. Beautiful, photogenic ladies and great photo directing. Good ideas for home schooling spaces, too. Although I am way past that, I'm not past loving new, soft carpet underfoot.

    1. Image for AnnTN AnnTN

      The oldest one, the pretty blonde, is KariAnne's daughter. One of her twin daughters. I believe the younger two are KariAnne's nieces :-).

  5. Image for Be Be

    What a thoughtful thing to do. Things are so different but when kids see adults prepare even if school is online, it gives them confidence. What a difference you are making!!!

  6. Image for Betty in Arlington Betty in Arlington

    Lovely ideas for K thru college learning on-line! I second the ear buds or earphones to cut down on distrations! We will be social distance teaching my 6 yo great niece a on my niece's porch this semester after her four hours of on-line instruction...we will need to figure out what that scenario will look like! Looking for flexible chair ideas, and crafting and reading baskets or boxes to hold paper, crayons, books, fabric, yarn, etc... It should be a challenge - for everyone! Good luck with with your lovely twins' on-line this year!

  7. Image for PJ PJ

    What child wouldn't love this nice space to do their school work? It looks so inviting. I spent 15 years homeschooling my kids at the kitchen table and would have loved something like this. Best wishes to all the parents starting this new change in their lives. You can do it!

  8. Image for JC JC

    What a light and bright space to learn! The color of the wall is so pretty, KariAnne! I love the book shelves! Is their a bulletin board or fun place to display artwork or creations? Maybe simple painted clipboards hanging on the wall would be cute. Also, a wipe board or chalkboard would give variety to their learning experience. My heart goes out to so many parents and students who now have, overnight, found themselves in a full or part time "homeschooling" type situation. We homeschooled, by choice, for 13 years and we absolutely loved it, but I understand this is such a different situation. My encouragement would be, to those in this new situation, try and be as flexible as possible, make it as fun....because learning is a lifetime fun activity, and give yourselves lots of grace. Have your students do fun things that they normally don't get to do in a classroom situation, like, school in the backyard, in their tree fort, or at a park. Have them jump rope or shoot hoops while reciting their multiplication tables etc. Turn the kitchen into a science lab complete with goggles, rubber gloves, and glass beakers! Incorporate as much of their lessons with day to day life. Cook a meal from that period of history, country, or culture. Have them write about their experiences, create a play, or make up a silly songs to learn their lessons or concepts. Have them be the teacher and you the student where they lead their lesson teaching you! That's where the wipe board or chalkboard would be great too. Explore the outdoors and make nature or science journals, catch bugs (no murder hornets, please!) and research their life cycle. I realize most will have to stick to a prescribed set curriculum, but I encourage the parents/educators to look ahead at what their students will be learning and add some of these fun activities into their experience. Who knows, this just may be some of the best schooling they have ever experienced!

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