A huge thank you to eBay and ShopStyle for sponsoring this post.
Well…school starts in a couple of weeks, and we’re trying to get ready. We’re re-arranging furniture and scoping out places to create little study nooks. I have zero illusions that two active boys will be able to sit in one spot staring at a computer screen all day, hence…multiple different nooks, scattered around the house. I’ll share more once we’ve gotten those all figured out, but I do have a little early look at one of them here.
Homeschool Ideas: Refurbished Laptops & A Study Nook
While our study nooks are still a work-in-progress (and will likely change as we really get in the virtual-school groove and figure out which ones are actually working), the one non-negotiable item we need to get started on is a laptop.
Before, the boys would usually just borrow one of ours if they needed to type something, but now? Mike and I NEED ours during the day. And that ancient laptop that got Raines through the spring quarantine? Well…it had so many little tech issues that I spent, like — and this is just a rough estimate — approximately 837469136 hours working as my kids’ personal tech support.
So when eBay reached out, asking if we’d like to take a look at their nearly new laptops…um…yes. The answer is YES.
I think buying used electronics for kids is almost always the way to go — laptops especially. And eBay has a huge section of laptops that have been (my words) Officially Refurbished, or (eBay’s words) Certified Refurbished, which means that the manufacturer is actually selling them via eBay, after fully testing and verifying the laptops. These laptops are basically brand new, shipped directly from the manufacturer, and come with a 90-day warranty. They just..cost less.
The laptop deals we looked at ranged from a couple of hundred dollars in savings…to over a thousand. (Discounts can be found up to 50% off.) If your little one just needs a Chromebook (which is, in my opinion, a perfect starter laptop for elementary-aged kids), there’s a ton to choose from. Here’s a list of Certified Refurbished Chromebooks on eBay.
If you would prefer a step up from a Chromebook, you’re better off perusing the entire list of eBay’s Certified Refurbished laptops. There are some solid options from Dell, Lenovo, as well as some Microsoft Surface options that look pretty good.
For Raines, we ended up going with a gaming laptop. He’s been saving up for one, so we split the cost with him and got a laptop that he can use for school and for gaming. (Acer’s Predator is the model we went with, this one specifically, if interested.)
Some Fun Facts About eBay’s Nearly New Laptops
- Certified Refurbished laptops are verified, tested, and shipped by the manufacturer themselves (and come with a free 90-day warranty).
- The selection is pretty huge, and includes brands like Acer, Dell, Microsoft, HP and Lenovo (just to name a few).
- Free Shipping (actually, eBay tells me that 71% of all of their sales — not just laptops — have free shipping)
- Returns? Yup. If the product is not as expected, eBay will cover the cost of the return.
- Quick links: eBay’s Certified Refurbished laptop store
Our Little Study Nook Essentials
- Laptop: Acer Predator Helios 300
- Magnetic fractions
- Magnetic file and pencil holders – our exact ones are old, but these are similar. I like that there are multiple sizes in this set.
- Similar table (best search terms are ‘tulip table’, then use the filters on the side to select ‘white’ and the specific size)
- Similar chairs
- Similar wireless headphones (he likes the ones with the thing that fits over the ear)
- YETI tumbler (he needs a water container that doesn’t ‘sweat’ all over the desk…even when filled with ice)
- Metal straws
Fingers crossed that these study nooks of ours end up working. Trying to figure out how FOUR people will work all day inside of a typical city dwelling…well…wish us luck.
A huge thank you to eBay for sponsoring this post! This is going to be one strange year…but now we at least have the electronics situation figured out. As always, all thoughts, opinions and product choices are my own. And readers, thank you for your continued support. It doesn’t go unnoticed and is so very much appreciated.
These are great ideas, thank you! I usually don’t think of ebay for electronics.
I’m watching my son with his online school today, and I realized that the thing he needs the most is some sort of floor seating space. We have a rug, which doesn’t seem very comfortable for an entire day. Are there floor seats that people have used and love and floor desks etc? Do you think you guys could do a list for alternative study nook supply ideas ?
I second that request for FLOOR SEATS! My son is using a floor desk inside an indoor tent for some privacy.
I really love the magnetic board with the wood frame. It’s exactly what I’m looking for. Mind sharing where you found that?
I have never thought about buying used laptop/computer for the kid and that’s a great idea!! Thank you for sharing!!
Me too me too!! Please please
Would love to have another post(s) with more info (product links, too) about setting up school at home, the more contributors the better!
Shana, keep sharing your heart…so good to hear messages that bring us together.
Hey Guys! we use a meditation pillow called a Zafu for floor seating. Our kids love them and carry them around the house. Whenever I need them they’re never where I expect them to be! They’re around 30 dollars on amazon and the cover is removable for washing, that’s a yay! for anyone with kids!
Love that wood framed black board! Where did you find it? We’ve been looking for something similar!
We ended up making it (or, uh, having someone put it up). It’s literally just sheet metal (with a matte finish – you can order it that way) glued to the wall with some reclaimed wood tacked on as a frame.