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Old 07-29-2010, 01:40 PM   #1
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Desks- Yay or Nay

Do you use desks for your kids when homeschooling? Why or why not?

Honestly, desks are too associated with the rigidity of industrialized schooling for me... so I'll skip them. Space is also an issue.
I'm not trying to recreate school at home. Homeschooling has so much to offer that I don't feel it needs to mimic school; its an entity unto itself. Desks just seem too "I want to be just like a real school, only at home" to me.


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Old 07-29-2010, 02:13 PM   #2
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Re: Desks- Yay or Nay

Yes, we got one about 6 months ago when my oldest was 5 1/2, and in kindergarten. We only have 1 table in the whole house (in the kitchen), so it's nice for there to be another option for where he can do work. The desk is in the bedroom he shares with his brother. He does more of his work in the kitchen, but it is helpful sometimes for him to go in a quiet room without distractions. It's also a place in his room where he can do Legos, color, etc. It has worked very well for us, but of course it's not a necessity for HSing.
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Old 07-29-2010, 03:12 PM   #3
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Re: Desks- Yay or Nay

Yes, Since DD has ADHD she has a hard time sitting next to me to do school so she has a desk to use that way she has her own space. She loves it.
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Old 07-29-2010, 03:26 PM   #4
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Re: Desks- Yay or Nay

When we HSed we used the kitchen table as our main homeschool area. We have a floor to ceiling, wall-to-wall bookcase there for all our supplies, and it was the easiest place for all of us to sit together for sit-down work. We also used the park across the street- mainly for reading, read-alouds, and discussions.

I don't favor desks for homeschooling, especially when the children are young. They might come in handy when they are older- middle school aged and up.

I'll add that now our children do homework at the dining or kitchen table. We have desks in each of our boys' rooms, but they don't use them for homework unless they need the computers.
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Old 07-29-2010, 06:46 PM   #5
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Re: Desks- Yay or Nay

We're going to put a small desk in DS's room when we get him his mini-notebook computer...if he wants to use it for schoolwork, great...if not, oh well. Right now he does most of his work at the kitchen table and we go outside to the big mowed field behind our house for a lot of our reading or the kids chill on beanbag chairs in the living room, but DS has ADHD and is very easily distracted...the kitchen table is in full view of the living room, tv, and main play area for the younger kids, so its hard to get him to focus on any type of schoolwork with that going on. I try to let the girls play in DD's room while he's doing schoolwork, but they both prefer to be out where they can see & interact with me...I'm thinking a desk will give him that space to do schoolwork alone & focus if he needs, if not, it will be a nice place for his computer if nothing else

ETA: If/when we get DS a desk, it won't be the traditional school/classroom type desk, more something like this or this...something along the lines of a kid-size homeoffice type desk and that he can take with him later on and use for a long time.
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Old 07-29-2010, 07:33 PM   #6
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Re: Desks- Yay or Nay

We have desks, we also have a large "kidney bean" table.My original plan was to have the table for arts and crafts and the desk for schooling. DS mostly works at the table for space and comfort, but he also likes his desk too. My DD uses the desk as well. I think it's good to have both, another space for writing and coloring.
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Old 07-29-2010, 09:21 PM   #7
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Re: Desks- Yay or Nay

Kearnan had an art desk in his bedroom for forever. He loved the one my cousin had so much that I got him his own. We incorporated that into our school room. I wound up buying a different desk for Kearnan to use. It is an old fashioned style with a sloped writing surface and storage inside. Kearnan has special needs and he writes far better on a sloped surface than on a plain flat table. He also gets distracted easily so being at his own desk in the school room helps him focus when his brother is running around like a toy without an off switch. Tharen moved to a desk that my MIL gave me. It has a black board top, lots of storage and plenty of space on the top for his arts projects. I was going to give him Kearnan's old desk but this one has more work surface and is bigger so it will last him longer. It isn't so much about recreating school at home as about doing what works best for my kids. At some point I will probably move Kearnan's desk to his bedroom, maybe when he hits his teens and is more self directed in his work. I always had a desk in my bedroom as a kid. It was some where for me to do my writing and anything else I wanted to do. Though I always preferred coloring on the living room floor or coffee table (I still love a good coloring book LOL). We don't do all of our schooling at the desks. Some of it is done at the computer, science almost always happens at the kitchen table so we have room for experiments (or in the back yard if it is a really mess one). We also do most of our crafts either on the school room floor or at the kitchen table. We do most of our reading on the couch or in bed but I am thinking we should get some bean bag chairs so we can do more reading in the actual school room since it is also our library.
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Old 07-29-2010, 11:12 PM   #8
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Re: Desks- Yay or Nay

Yep..we have 2. One for me and one for DS. He isn't obligated to do schoolwork at his desk. It has his computer on it, that he hardly uses. He always uses mine. He'll do worksheets and stuff at his desk, if his sister is bothering him too much at the dining room table. We don't do the "school at home" thing...but we have a "classroom". It's stocked with my sewing/crafting stuff. Art supplies, all of our books, computers and our file cabinet. We have puzzles, puppets, games, maps, and DS's little chemistry lab set too. We have A LOT in this room.
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Old 07-30-2010, 08:55 AM   #9
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Re: Desks- Yay or Nay

we had some 2 kids school desks from a local school that was getting rid of their stuff, but recently took them apart to make something else instead. They kind of worked for awhile, but they were really too small for me to sit with them when we worked together. They liked the table desks for coloring and such. Hubby wanted them because he was stuck in the 'homeschooling must look and act like regular school'.

We're past that now.

Some kids need the structure, I suppose. Mostly each kid finds their own place to do their school. It is often in a chair outside, or on the deck, or on the couch, or on their bed....
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Old 07-31-2010, 07:03 PM   #10
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Re: Desks- Yay or Nay

I had not planned to use desks, but we are now re-painting student desks to put in our house. We've been using the kitchen table. I love the convenience of the table for when I'm preparing meals or my youngest is doing activities at the table also. I'm sure we'll still use it a lot. My main reason for wanting desks is that fine motor activity is difficult for ds1. He hates writing, and I've noticed that his writing posture is terrible. Among other problems, his shoulders are up to his ears with tension. I think part of the problem is that the table is about as ergonomically incorrect for him as it could possibly be. Hopefully the desks will make writing more comfortable for him.
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