Here is where Noah worked tonight on Rosetta Stone Japanese. For years my workspace has been a 2 sq.ft. space at the end of the kids' communal desk. First I had a laptop there. Then I upgraded to a desktop computer, but tucked the CPU and keyboard underneath my little single-place-setting of desk space. Then, with the re-assignment of room roles necessitated by the arrival of our new piano, the old Niklas IKEA shelves that were once the 'entertainment centre' got vacated in the family room. For a couple of months they were cluttered with plastic bins. This week I did some serious re-organizing and moved my computer over onto the Niklas shelves. I'm now up to a good 4.5 sq.ft. of desk space, and I have two open shelves above which I'll hopefully be able to turn into storage / organizational space for me.
The kids use my computer from time to time, with permission. Permission is more likely to be granted when they're doing something specifically educational. In the past two weeks, family interest in Japanese language study has taken root. Noah had expressed interest months ago, but hadn't done much about it. But then we found the Slime Forest Adventure RPG which teaches Japanese kana and kanji and everyone's into Japanese. Noah had balked at the introduction to Rosetta Stone Japanese because he was self-conscious about the audio feedback and the right vs. wrong scoring. Especially now that his sisters are keen on the language and likely to peer over his shoulder watching his mistakes, he wanted total privacy. My little computer nook turned out to be the perfect place for him to work. We clothespinned a baby quilt over it and plugged in the headphones and he happily, on his own initiative, worked away diligently for quite a while tonight.