When your kids are taking virtual classes, it’s essential to separate “home time” from “school time.”
If the two are mixed, your kids will have trouble staying focused!
You can’t supervise them 24/7 (nor do you want to!) but there are other ways to ensure that your kids stay engaged.
Whether you’ve hired a pod teacher or your child is working independently on their virtual learning, creating a designated study space they love will greatly benefit their well-being and productivity.
Here are 6 tips to create an amazing at-home student workspace, from creating a personalized information board to giving every desk item a home.
1. pop-up a desk
A cheap and easy way to start your child’s at-home workspace is by making a pop-up desk.
Buy a tri-fold poster board from Target, Walmart, or the Dollar Store. The actual quality of the board doesn’t matter since you’ll just be gluing onto it or hanging papers with clips.
The typical tri-fold is fairly large and might make an uncomfortable environment for your child, so cut it in half or in whatever size is desired.
Bonus: pop-up desks are portable! If you have multiple kids studying at the same dining table, they can now have their own clear areas marked by the tri-folders.
2. gather the essentials
The student workspace should have all the school supplies that your child reaches for throughout a regular school day. If your child needs to get up to find an item, they can lose their train of thought and get distracted again.
The list of required items can go on and on. Here are common supplies you might need:
- Sticky notes
- Construction paper
- Scrap paper
- Graphing paper
3. give everything a home
This trick to keeps everything organized so you don’t find a huge mess by day 3. Create clear homes for every item at the workspace, so that your child can return items to their appropriate place.
- Command hooks are really handy for hanging headphones or chargers. It also holds any whiteboard that hangs by a string.
- Clear jars or mugs can display different types of supplies. One jar can hold all the pencils and pens while another holds the scissors and ruler.
- Bins can hold school books and notebooks.
- Plastic folders, such as Poly Pocket folders, can contain loose-leaf papers and the classroom syllabus so your child won’t lose it. Then, clip your filers with binder clips onto your pop-up desk for easy access.
Give time for your children to develop the habit to put all items back in their homes. Sometimes, they just wanna jump out of their seat once virtual classes end and that’s okay. Consistently guide them into taking care of their desk and they’ll eventually gain the personal discipline to organize without your supervision.
4. light it up
Your kids need adequate light to complete work.
The best light is natural sunlight because it promotes alertness and discourages sleepiness.
But if that’s not possible, use a desk lamp that’s also good for those late-night study sessions.
Consider investing in a dedicated lamp for your kid if they don’t have one yet. You can buy either a standing lamp or a clip-on lamp. Clip-ons are more portable and if they’re light enough, you can even clip them onto the pop-up desk.
5. manage your time
Establish time management with a desk calendar that helps students keep track of study schedules and upcoming deadlines.
There are many options for calendars like your classic paper book or a dry-erase calendar.
Work with your child to find the best calendar.
- A monthly calendar that has some space for any short notes is ideal for students who prefer looking at the big picture.
- A weekly schedule is ideal for students who like going day by day to keep track of assignments without feeling too overwhelmed.
6. sprinkle in personality
Now that you have a practical workspace, it’s time to add in some fun! A personalized space encourages kids to be more enthusiastic about learning.
- Stick on their name onto the pop-up desk with these letters
- Let your child paint their tri folder
- Buy inspirational posters to tack on
- Use stickers: they can both be entertaining and inspiring! Some sticker labels even let you write personal messages for your children.
- Decorate based on your child’s interests: if they like ballet then hang a paper trail of ballet shoes, if they like space science, glue on plastic stars and paper print outs of rockets!
With a designated workspace, your kids will be encouraged to learn and focus on their virtual classroom.
Happy distance learning! You’ve got this, parents.
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How did you create your child's workspace?
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