Creating Inviting Learning Spaces


As the start of a fresh new school year approaches, I find myself turning my attention to our surroundings. Our living spaces. Of course there are a lot of choices to be made concerning planning and curriculum, but I know that the spaces in our home have the potential to make or break our school year. When our rooms and surfaces are cluttered we feel the chaos and learning doesn’t come as smoothly or naturally. On the other hand, if we have inviting and organized spaces, the spaces themselves help facilitate learning. 

Creating Inviting Learning Spaces

It is always a great time to reevaluate your learning spaces, but there’s something about the clean slate a new school year offers that just cannot be ignored. My home is small, and like so many others, I often have a hard time creating inviting spaces because of the lack of storage and the abundance of belongings. Even though my home is small, the task of reorganizing can feel monumental. But it doesn’t have to be! I’ve started small and slowly tackled one small area at a time. In this post sponsored by The Playful Learning Ecademy, I’ll be sharing one of the transformations along with a few tips and some information on how you can learn more about creating Playful Learning Spaces of your own.

Creating Inviting Learning Spaces

One of my goals for this school year is to help my son blossom into a confident writer. To help him on his journey, I knew I wanted a space that promoted the desire to write along with a sense of  independence and creativity. This writing station does just that. The space is small, and although the change is not totally radical in itself, has produced some pretty great changes. 

Creating Inviting Learning Spaces-"Before"

Before, this space on top of R’s art cabinet wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t very inviting either. The green containers housed some crayons, note cards, and other odds and ends. The mailbox, although once loved, had not been touched in some time. And a large amount of the space was used to store our big roll of craft paper, even though R could not manage and handle this sized roll on his own. 

Creating Inviting Learning Spaces-"After"

Now this space is functional and inviting. I used an unloved desk organizer from another part of the house to organize note cards, list paper, cards and envelopes, Post-It notes, and scrap paper. I also filled a cup with large triangular colored pencils to sneakily promote proper pencil grip.

Creating Inviting Learning Spaces

But the biggest change came from the bulletin board. I attached pictures of the people R loves the most with their names added directly to the picture. Now when he wants to write to one of them, all he needs to do is visit his board to copy the spelling. I also added an example of letter format, envelope format, stamps, and an alphabet handwriting worksheet so that he may check letter formation whenever needed. I moved full sheets of paper and all other supplies into the cabinet where they are organized, accessible, and out of the way. 

When R first noticed the new writing center, he exclaimed, “Oh my goodness! This makes me happy, and it makes me want to learn and write and go places with everyone I love.” It makes me happy too. And now that mailbox is getting a lot more love and use. 

More Playful Learning Spaces

Playful Learning Spaces

The Playful Learning Spaces eCourse has been an invaluable resource for me as I cut through the clutter and create displays that will inspire. This eCourse shares the importance of creating the right environment and gives lots of tips to help you put together inviting playful learning spaces of your own. You’ll learn about ways to:

  • Encourage young writers
  • Nurture budding readers
  • Encourage artistic explorations
  • Develop a love of science
  • Make the most of the corners and small spaces in your home or classroom

The Playful Learning Spaces eCourse includes six wonderful videos, links to even more resources and further reading, printables, and access to a community of others that are also taking the course. In the community, you can ask questions, share ideas, and receive input on the ideas you’ve implemented. 

What are some of the ways you create playful learning spaces in your home or classroom? Please share your tips!

 (This post contains affiliate links. For more information, please view our disclosure policy.)

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future posts delivered to your feed reader.
About Joyce

Joyce is the mom behind Childhood Beckons, where she encourages parents to focus on their families and the childhood that beckons them. Her motto is "Childhood is calling my son to play and explore. And childhood is calling me to help him on his journey." She enjoys discovering creative ways to play and learn and passing along her family's favorites. You can find Joyce on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Comments

  1. I love the idea of creating examples for letter writing and addressing envelopes! Not only does it encourage writing practice, but also how to connect with family and friends.

  2. Joyce – what a wonderful change! That is so fun *I* want to go write a letter. :)

    Blessings,

    Val

  3. Lovely redo! We are currently working to restructure our playroom now that the kids are older and have aged into different types of learning spaces. Pinning this to our idea board for the room :)

    • I’m so glad you liked it! Will you be posting about your new playroom? I’d love to see the before and after!