Decorating a Kids’ Room to Boost Russian Learning
We recently moved and I had an opportunity to change up my daughters’ room decor to fit the new space. It has always been important for me to bring in the elements of Russian into the girls’ room. It started with putting their names and the Russian Alphabet into their room with them, then I was creating shelves that can display the front covers of all the books, so they can see the Russian letters and some special illustrations.
As the kids are growing up, I make sure to involve them in the projects and decorating options for their spaces. We always discuss the options in Russian. This brings up a lot of words that they are not so very sure or utterly unaware of in Russian. It was a great opportunity to have fun and improve their Russian without them even noticing it!
The main decision for my 4 year-old was розовый или сиреневый (pink or purple) for the room color. So when I brought the many color strips from the store we had to dive into the many shades and colors and their names in Russian, there are so many!
2. WINDOW TREATMENTS
We decided to remove old and broken blinds (жалюзи) and are still deciding on what to replace them with шторы/гардины, рулонные шторы, тюль. It is very traditional in Russia to use the light gauzy тюль and for a fancy girls’ room it might actually be a good and playful element. We are still in search of the perfect option of the room.
As we were getting rid of the crib (детская кроватка для новорожденных) we were trying to see what kind of bed (кровать) to replace it with (одноярусная, двухъярусная), what mattress to get (матрас). Is it worth is getting a whole set (гарнитур) or get individual pieces and mix-and match. I brought various catalogues with me and we looked at different pieces of furniture ( мебель), colors (цвета), styles (стиль) and models (модель). Even my 2 year-old was thrilled to go through all the beautiful options and point to different bedside tables (тумба, тумбочка, прикроватный столик), wardrobes (гардероб, шкаф), dressers (комод), shelves (полка, стеллаж). It’s a huge amount of new and somewhat complex words that we used, we discussed, looked, pointed, asked questions, laughed and learned!
We ended up getting some spice racks at Ikea (with the idea from Pinterest) and painted them pink and purple, added some sparkles (блёстки), got messy and now I can’t wait to see the selves displaying the books in Russian and English on the wall (стена)
Although we currently are not contemplating changing the tile (плитка) floor of their room to wood (паркет) or carpet (ковровое покрытие), we however are looking for carpet (ковер, палас) options to make the floor warmer and the room more colorful and less echoey. We ended up with a shaggy carpet (ковер-шегги) that is washable and has all the main colors of the room contains. The girls loved touching various textures and being the integral part of the process.
- WALL DECOR
There is fair amount of wall space and we had some heirloom pictures (картины) that I knew I will bring back into the room. Several years ago I saw chalk boards (меловая доска) in frames (рамка) where you can write something inspirational and I was searching for a similar item. My idea was to use them to write my girls’ names in english and russian to replace the individual letters of their names I had hanging in their nursery. Any I found a perfect whimsically framed chalkboard. We worked together and here is the result.
“What can you do with the ceiling (потолок)?” you may say. Well first of all stars (звёзды). There are many places that sell the stick on stars that gather the light during the day and “shine” at night as the kids are falling asleep. We also looked at the current light in the room and are considering adding a hanging fixture (люстра) in the middle of the room. It’s a common thing in Russia and I miss it as in a lot of places in the US the room might not have any light on the ceiling of a bedroom and only the bedside table lamp (торшер) or sconces (светильники) are available. I am looking for a chandelier type fixture to add sparkle and chique to the (overly) pink room, hoping to add some playful sophistication, while on a budget. Still searching for the perfect fixture.
Once everything is finished, I will post some pictures of the final results!