Homeschooling in small spaces is an ongoing, room-by-room makeover to meet the needs of your homeschool and children. If you homeschool in squished square footage, here are a few ideas to save space.

1. Skip the desks. While they might show others that you’re serious about schooling at home, they’ll ultimately go unused and take up too much of the space you could dedicate to learning centers.

2. Designate a central meeting area. Use what you already have in your home like your dining room table. This is the place where you’ll pow-wow with your students on topics like their lessons, grades, schedule, and rules. Post a dry erase board to spell out important items and hang a calendar to remind everyone of field trips and days off.

3. Combine learning into living spaces. Assign and label existing shelves for curriculum, reference books, literature, and Bible study materials. Create a media center with a hutch, cabinet, or end table to hold portable music and movie players. A small basket or crate can house CDs and DVDs (empty clementine boxes are sturdy enough for the job, too). With some finagling and the right piece of furniture, you can find a spot for all your students’ electronic gadgets and schoolwork.

4. Keep essentials central. Just like you might place a fly swatter on the porch during summers and a snow shovel during winters, keep your most-used items in handy locations in your main homeschooling area. A whiteboard, markers, and sticky notes can go in a high-traffic spot. The same goes for your planners and current reading selections, which you can get off the floor in a wall-mounted magazine rack. When something is right in front of you, it’s hard to ignore.

5. Remain flexible. Make the most of your confined and occasionally cramped quarters by going with the flow and refusing to stress if your kids’ butterfly habitat ends up next to the pet lizard’s tank, in front of the rock collection and on top of the fossil slides. Stay generally organized and be at peace knowing that your home and your homeschool are sometimes going to blur.

Do you homeschool in a small home? What tips and tricks have you found to make your days run more smoothly?