Today we share with you how we transformed our back mudroom into a preschool pandemic pod classroom.
When we found out that our son’s daycare was going to be closed for the summer and into the fall, we got to talking with some friends in the neighborhood with similar aged kids and decided we wanted to create a “preschool pod”.
Luckily, we were able to hire a teacher from the daycare to help out a couple of hours a week which supported her because the school was closed and us with childcare. We also trade off watching each others’ kids too, so it’s nice to have a set up for all of these different times.
We started this project by emptying out our back mudroom. This room is about 9 feet long by 7 feet wide. We picked this location for the “classroom” because it has a door leading out to the backyard and it is also next to a bathroom. We already had shelving in that room where we stored all of our outdoor gear for summer like bug spray, bike gear, picnic blankets, rain jackets, hats and sunglasses…all that stuff. So we cleared that out as a first step.
CHILD-PROOFING THE CLASSROOM
Then we went through the room and to make sure things were child-proofed since we knew the kiddos would be hanging out here and especially because one of the kids is only 18 months old.
Our checklist included making sure the all the shelving was secured to the wall. We added a cover to the basement door knob. We added a sliding cabinet lock to our storage unit. Then we also added a retractable gate between the kitchen and the “classroom” to keep the youngest member of our pod out of the kitchen.
After we did that we added in the things that we needed for the “classroom”. Here is a list of some of those items. (See video for more.)
PANDEMIC POD CLASSROOM CHECKLIST
- Boxes for out of rotation toys and art supplies on top of the bookcases.
- A couple of baskets of household things on the top shelves.
- Art supplies, cleaning supplies, and a thermometer are also on a high shelf out of reach.
- Three small bins below that have clean towels, dirty towels, and diaper changing.
- A shelf of books.
- A large bin of toys – easy to wash.
- Several puzzles.
- An ABC abacus.
- An empty shelf for art work to dry on.
- An empty wire basket for transporting items for outdoor time.
- A kid sized table and stools.
- An adult sized seat/bench.
What’s nice about this play area is that it’s easily convertible back to being a mudroom again once our son goes back to preschool. It’s also nice that it’s separate from the rest of our son’s toys so that they don’t get mixed together and it’s easier to clean. On weekends and when it is just my son and me we use it as a messy zone.
I hope you have found this post useful especially if you are in a similar situation. Thanks so much for stopping by our home!
CLEANING TIPS PRESCHOOL POD AT HOME
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