Creating an Efficient Study Space for Your Child
The environment in which your child settles into each evening to tackle homework can make or break how effective study time is. Fortunately, creating an efficient study space for your child can be easily achieved with the help of these 15 simple tips.
1. Set up a desk that is the proper height.
The desk should be at the proper height to prevent your child from straining. If your child is in second grade, the desk should be lower. If he’s in high school, it should be higher. You can save money on a desk in the long run by purchasing a simple, adjustable version such as the ECR4Kids’ Open Front Metal Desk with Metal Book Basket.
2. Provide a chair that is comfortable and ergonomic.
A chair that is both pleasant to sit in and good for posture is critical to keep your child’s mind away from the distractions of physical discomfort.
3. Ensure the study space is quiet…or filled with music.
This will depend on your child. Don’t be afraid to experiment and discover what is best for him. Some children need complete silence while others benefit from listening to classical instrumental music.
4. Eliminate electronics.
With the exception of using the computer (supervised) for school assignments or a calculator for math problems where allowed, all electronics should be removed, out of sight, or shut off. This includes tablets, phones, televisions, video games, and so on.
5. Banish any other distractions.
Besides controlling the sound and removing electronics, make sure that there aren’t any other distractions at play, such as bothersome siblings or a busy view out a window.
6. Make the space well-lit.
This is important for two reasons: 1) so your child stays alert while doing his homework, and 2) so that your child’s eyesight is preserved.
7. De-clutter the area.
An untidy, overly-crowded space can derail your child’s concentration. Make sure there is very little stuff of any kind present on or around his desk.
8. Organize any supplies.
The supplies your child needs to study (such as pencils, a pencil sharpener, paper, a ruler, a calculator, and so on) should be neatly stowed on or around the desk within easy reach and should be well-stocked. This eliminates the necessity to get up and fetch something.
9. Consider diffusing essential oils.
Rosemary, lemon, basil, and peppermint essential oils are excellent for mental clarity and focus while studying. Some companies also sell blends especially for studying and concentration.
10. Avoid snacking or drinking.
Within reason, don’t let your child enjoy any snacks or beverages while doing their homework. Children tend to be more aware of what they’re eating than what they’re supposed to be focusing on (plus crumbs can get onto their books) and drinking too much can cause too many bathroom breaks.
11. Create study breaks.
If your child has a lot of work to do and could use a brief “brain break,” or if they must have a bite to eat or a sip to drink, set aside one or two short 10-minute study breaks. Perhaps go on a quick walk outside with him to refresh his mind or have him enjoy some healthful snacks and water. Avoid anything with caffeine or sugar as this could potentially alter his concentration.
12. Decorate to motivate.
Use shades of blue to ensure a calm, study-focused environment. If decor adorns the area, make it something motivating like inspirational quotes or previous homework assignments with high marks.
13. Establish a schedule.
Most children thrive on the surety of a schedule. So set a specific time (for example, as soon as they get done with their after-school snack, right after dinner, or at 6 o’clock sharp) that studying begins.
14. Be readily available for assistance.
If your child needs help solving a problem, be sure you’re closely present and able to drop whatever it is you’re doing to help your child as soon as possible.
15. Provide something motivational for completion.
If your child struggles with good study habits, have something special set aside as motivation for completion. It could be something as simple as a “Well done” sticker or 10 extra minutes playing video games.
And there you have 15 simple, easy-to-implement tips for creating an efficient study space for your child. Use whichever ones suit your family, your living space, and your unique child to ensure they have a helpful, study-focused atmosphere every evening.
About the Author
TJ is a former chef with a bachelor of science degree in professional writing turned stay-at-home wife, mom, homeschooler, and blogger. Be sure to visit her website MeasuringFlower.com where she writes about natural family living, homeschooling, and real food.