Organization is one of those things that can always be re-visited and it doesn't necessarily need a pandemic, a new house mate, or recent house mate departure to initiate it. It is amazing how much stuff accumulates the longer we reside in a house, apartment, or even a room. Have you ever looked around and wondered where everything came from? If it's really needed, or if it still has value in your life? Whether organizing monthly, quarterly, annually, or whenever the mood hits you because the walls are closing in, creativity even in organizing is 'a thing.' Especially with more people needing space at home, creativity is a must!
Space for everyone
Dining rooms, living room, dens, offices, bedrooms, and basements have now become multi-purpose rooms. While a desk and a chair is ideal for virtual learning and telework, it is not required. A nightstand can double as a desk just like a tv stand or even a jewelry armoire depending on how tall it is. Think beyond the kitchen table or the living room coffee table and create space for everyone who needs it. It could even be on top of a microwave cart with a barstool as the seating arrangement. Though, I would only recommend that for high school aged and older. Utilize that master schedule you created to make sure if the same space is used by more than one person, that the time is clearly identified so adequate privacy is provided.
Have small spaces? Poster Boards can double as 'cubicle walls' or a corner can be used to block out the rest of the family. Use similar methods as when you built tents inside for the children. Use chairs, tv tray tables or even books to provide space for everyone. Though it may sound odd, if you have a powder room, use it as a temporary office space and put the sign on the door to let the rest of the family know it is 'In Use' for virtual learning or meetings. Closets also make a good cubicle space. A child can sit on the floor and use a few shoe boxes to sit the laptop on and have a semi-private space for effective learning. Pillows make for good seat cushions whether on the floor or on a chair. The point is, there is space for everyone, even if you feel you have a tiny space.
Space for everything
The best space for productivity is a neat space and a neat space is a space where everything has a place and a space. For space that has multiple uses, bins, baskets, and containers come in handy. For example, when eating at the table, the benches are just a place to sit, but when it's time for learning, if they are storage benches, they house the supplies needed for learning or for meetings. Or the supplies can be in containers that everyone keeps in their rooms to keep the common space more organized and when it's their turn to use the space for virtual learning or meetings, they bring their supply container with them. Perhaps there is a storage table in a nearby room that has everyone's containers in it so the supplies are always close by. If everyone keeps up with their items, then everything will always be in in it's place and the space will not get too cluttered. Bins, containers, bags, or even buckets all work to hold supplies and store them until needed, and the master schedule you created, helps keep spaces from being double booked.
Space for space
We sort of touched on repurposing space. This isn't just a bucket or a shoebox, but also a powder room, spare room, or space in a room that isn't used all day. All space and everything can be repurposed for something else. Use an empty drawer to keep school supplies. Don't throw out the shoebox, just throw out the shoes, and keep craft supplies in that shoebox. Instead of trashing the box that your Amazon purchases arrived in, repurpose that box to store paper, tape, pens, etc. (office supplies). Don't really use that waste bin, use it for scraps of materials from the masks you are making or reinforce it and make it into a small ottoman for your feet or just the right height for your laptop if you are sitting on the floor. Have space on the wall, use command strips and hang up your masks so you don't forget to grab one going out of the door. Hang up your keys, scarves, or even hats. Put up a corkboard and post reminders, a copy of your master schedule and to do lists. Add a small whiteboard to keep you on track with all of your assignments or meetings. Space can always be reused to keep you organized, on time, and prepared for every virtual meeting, lesson, and assignment.
Talk it over in the comment section below or on Social Media and discover new organizational habits that have helped others adjust to these virtual times we currently find ourselves in. Use it going forward to maximize your organizational habits!