Screaming. Yelling. Tears. Bribery. Throwing. Slamming doors and broken pencils.
And that’s just you. The child attempting to DO the homework is ten times worse.
If every night is a pitched battle over homework, it’s time to find a solution. Setting up a dedicated homework zone is the first step in ending the war.
Create the Best Homework Space in Easy Steps
Before you set up a desk or pick a spot, it’s important to know your child’s learning style. Take a quick quiz online, like this one from Education Planner. Based on the results, you’ll gain insight into how your child learns.
Auditory learners benefit from books on tape, reading aloud, recording themselves, and an otherwise quiet environment. Noises could interfere with their learning process.
Visual learners learn by seeing. So doodles, writing things out, reading, and organized work spaces are helpful.
Tactile learners enjoy action! A space with fidgets, chewing gum while studying, and movement are all great learning tools.
Pick a Spot
Based on how your child learns, it’s time to find the best place to do homework. It pays to be open-minded and creative. It’s also important to involve your child.
For tactile learners, being outside or having the chance to find a new spot every day might be great. Finding a place where they can move a little bit, like a porch swing or sprawled out on the floor, might be a good option.
Auditory and visual learners might do well away from distractions. A quiet corner away from the action or a separate space in their room could be great.
Sit down and talk about options in your house that could work for your child. Or consider other places, like the library or a nearby park. Once you find the best spot, it’s time to decorate and stock it.
Set it Up
If your child is going to be using one dedicated spot in your home, you will need to find a desk or table for them to work on. You could repurpose something you already own or purchase a desk.
For visual learners, it’s good to create a clear system of organization. Set up folders and bins to store things in. You could work together to color code by subject. Separate pens, pencils, erasers, tape, and other office supplies into individual storage bins. Help your child create a system so that their space is uncluttered and ready for work.
Auditory learners should have a CD player or voice recorder. Having organizers and storage bins is also helpful. Adding noise canceling headphones and setting up away from the TV are also good choices.
Add flexible seating, like an exercise ball or standing desk, to a homework space for tactile learners. Or create a mobile homework kit, fully stocked with supplies, so that your child can pick a new spot daily.
If you are using an outside location or the local library, a mobile homework kit could be great for your child as well. Keep reading to learn how to stock every homework zone!
Every homework zone needs some basics:
- pencils with good erasers
- markers, crayons, and colored pencils
- white out
- stapler and extra staples (get a mini staple for on-the-go kits)
- paper clips
- notebooks or paper for writing
- sticky notes
For traditional desk set-ups, you could also add:
- magazine organizers
- printer and ink
- computer or tablet with a keyboard
No matter what your child is doing, they will be able to tackle it with these basic items.
The last step for all learners is to create a command center for school. This is a one-stop-shop to keep track of their progress, commitments, and assignments. Use a bulletin board or blank wall space and a small set of shelves to keep things neat.
Grab a wall calendar. You could use a traditional paper calendar or an erasable whiteboard. Either way, schedule out the whole month in advance. Write down sports games and practices, family events, days off from school, and assignment due dates. If you are using one calendar for everyone, color code your plans.
Track progress. If your child is having a hard time doing their homework, create a progress chart. Offer a reward or prize when they meet goals. Stay tuned for a post dedicated to setting goals for homework and grades!
Celebrate success. When your child comes home with good grades or outstanding work, put it up! Tack it up on the bulletin board or tape it to the wall. Seeing their hard work celebrated can be motivation to keep trying.
Extra supplies. Keep extra notebooks, pencils, pens, and art materials all in one place. Use it like a mini-store for your child to restock their own desks as needed.
School supplies for you. Having a central command for school means it’s also easy for you to keep your things neat and organized. Set up your own organization system so that you can keep track of school communication and paperwork.
How do you set up homework zones that work for your kids?