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Now that we find ourselves setting up for some form of virtual school for at least a portion of the upcoming school year, it’s time to get serious about setting up kid workstations for schoolwork and distance learning. Check out our setup so far!
This morning I popped on Facebook and I shared a picture of the new desks that I just bought for the kids at Wayfair (which I’m sorry to say, are currently sold out). The picture kind of took off and I realized quickly that so many of you are in the same boat as me. We are trying to seek some sense of normalcy for ourselves and our kids in a very abnormal period in time. In that post I shared our distance learning must-have supplies. That’s worth a look if you haven’t already seen it.
As we look ahead to the new school year, there are many times when I feel like there are more unknowns for this coming year than there were last spring. What we plan for today might totally change by tomorrow.
It’s hard to plan for the unknown.
So that got me thinking: with all of the UNCERTAINTY right now, what is something TANGIBLE that I could do to get ready for a school year that has no guarantees? My answer was to set up some kid workstations for distance learning. Last spring our kitchen table turned into our temporary school space and it was pretty awful. Some days that kids would stay at the table, but more often than not I would find them in other rooms of the house, papers and electronics strewn about like a cyber school debris field. I know that the kids felt as unorganized and scattered last year as I did.
Setting up kid workstations for distance learning
In that light, I set out to make workstations where the kids could attend full time virtual school if that’s what our district decided to do. Or perhaps they will run a hybrid program with the kids home a few days a week and attending school the other couple. At the very least, we could use the desks for homework if/when things normalize and school opens for full time in person for everyone.
Desks for kids
Our set up is pretty simple. We got two identical desks (again, these are sold out of the moment, but amazon has a lot of desk options. Wayfair has many desks for kids besides the model that we bought. The other big box stores have kid desks, IKEA usually has a decent selection, etc.)
We will try to keep the kids in the same room (for now, they’re in the living room). The desks are set up in an “L” shape to keep them visually separated from each other. (And they will each have headphones which I hope makes it possible for them to both potentially be on zoom classes at the same time without disturbing each other.)
Caddy filled with supplies
Every year I take the district-supplied list of required school supplies for the upcoming year and head to Walmart or Staples to load up on new #2 pencils and crayons. This year I bought a desk caddy for each kid and filled it with the typical supplies:
I also restocked our trusty old dollar store homework caddy with things that I know both kids will use. It is filled with markers, pencil sharpeners, etc.
Desktop USB and Electronic Charger
This one made me laugh because Bob actually got sucked into the ALDI Aisle of Shame ONCE AGAIN! He found these cool chargers to put on each kid’s desk. This will give them quick and easy access to be able to charge all-the-things. I found a similar charger on amazon you can check out.
Chromebook and Accessories
The kids use their chromebooks to access their online lessons, assignments and to log on to their zoom calls. Headphones are a MUST! Not only do I not need to hear the entire lesson they are attending, but since both kids are going to be working close together, I am hoping that headphones limit the distractions and squabbling.
Each kid also has a wireless mouse which makes many tasks easier than relying on the touch pad alone.
That’s about where we’re at so far.
I did add a small trash can underneath the desks that the kids can share. As you can see, Landon has already started to decorate his desk with a couple of toys on the top. I am pleased so far with how much the kids seem to love the desks. Hopefully they will carry that motivation through to the school year and feel a bit more organized than we did last Spring.
Have you set up a virtual or distance learning space for your kids? If so, what did you add? Can you think of other things we should add to ours?
Oh, make sure you grab this printable to stay organized!
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