How to Set Up a Homework Zone for Children
Back to School

How to Set Up a Homework Zone for Children

by Martha Scully

The kids are returning to school, and with the return of school comes the return of homework. For some children homework is an important part of their learning: it helps to reinforce the ideas that they are learning about in class and also encourages your child to work independently. Depending on your child’s age, and which grade they are in, their homework and assignments might make up a large portion of their grade. So it is important that your child is able to do their homework to the best of their ability.

An important way that you can help your children with their homework is by creating a homework zone.

In this article Careguide’s childcare expert and CanadianNanny founder, Martha Scully, will detail the benefits of a homework zone for school-aged children and share her 6 tips for creating the most effective one.


The Key Benefits of Homework Zones

While this may seem like a lot of work, a defined homework zone can prove very beneficial to your kids:

  • Provides a defined place for the kids to do school work
  • Allows your child the ability to focus
  • Reinforces the importance of homework
  • Encourages your child to work independently and understand their own needs

So what should you consider when creating this school work-friendly space?

6 Tips for Creating The Most Effective Homework Zone


1. Unplug

Despite the saying to whistle, while you work, the music and TV can prove very distracting for your child when they are doing their homework. You may also want to consider setting up parental controls on their laptops or computers that are located in this space to prevent them from being distracted by social media and the like during homework time.

Their homework space should be a quiet and calming space in which your child can focus. For that reason, make sure that there are no TVs, iPads, or other potentially distracting multimedia devices. You may also want to consider it a “no phone zone,” which requires that they leave their smartphones at the door.

2. Make it Private

Depending on who else is in the house, the afternoons can be a very busy time in your household. That is not conducive to your child being able to focus on their homework. Therefore, it is very important that the homework zone you create is in an area that is separate from the hubbub of the house. The kitchen table is far too central and does not allow your child the quiet they will need to focus. A separate room, preferably with a closed door, is a must for the homework zone.

3. Have the Necessary Supplies

When it comes to homework time, it is easy for your kids to get distracted looking for the tools they need. For that reason, it is important that you arm their homework zone with all of the tools they will need. This will allow your child to focus on their work instead of roaming the house looking for a purple pencil crayon. As a bonus, it will also help to minimize some clutter in your main living areas!

Bonus school supply tip: Consider buying doubles of school supplies, particularly specialty items like geometry sets or scientific calculators, so that your child can keep one at school and one in their homework zone.

4. Consider Comfort

If you Google “homework zone,” you will literally find thousands of decor ideas in order to make the space a beautiful addition to your home’s decor. But not all of those ideas are necessarily practical or even comfortable. More important than a homework zone that is photoshoot ready is a space where your child feels comfortable.

Work with your child to come up with comfortable furniture ideas. Not every child is comfortable sitting behind a desk: some may prefer a lap desk or an ergonomic chair. It’s important that your child feels comfortable in their homework space so that their focus is on the task at hand.

5. Organization is Key

When putting together your child’s homework space, consider extra organizational tools that might help your child to better focus, as well as keeping you abreast of what they are doing in school. For example, a large wall calendar will allow them to map out when their major assignments are due, and will allow both of you to plan out when they should start working on it so that it is not left to the last minute. This will also help you to work with your child on time management, which is an important skill for them to master.

Bonus organizational tip: consider file folders for each subject where they can keep notes, etc. that they may need throughout the year.

6. Create a Parent Folder

It can be difficult as a parent to keep track of everything going on in your child’s school, and depending on the age of your child, it’s easy for them to forget to have you sign things, submit money, etc. A parent folder can be a solution to that problem. Keep it in your child’s homework zone, and have them add in everything that you need to see/discuss/sign. This will help to encourage your child to take charge of their needs.

Conclusion

Setting up a good homework zone with all the tools needed is an important part of supporting your child’s education. It also sends the message that you see and value the importance of homework. Hopefully, these tips will help you to set your child up for success!


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About the Author
Martha Scully
Martha is the founder of CanadianNanny.ca. Martha has been featured as a Child Care Expert in hundreds of publications across Canada including The Globe and Mail, CBC, Today's Parent and The National Post, She lives in British Columbia with her husband and two daughters.