Homeschooling: 4 Tips to Upgrade Your Space
Whether you are an experienced homeschool parent or have been recently forced into homeschooling due to school closures, it can be a challenge to turn a part of the home — where children are used to relaxing — into a space for concentration and learning. Here are a few tips to help you make the most of your space and upgrade the area where you homeschool.
Increase Your Comfort
Uncomfortable seating makes both students and parents cranky. If your new classroom is the dining room where you usually only sit for short periods of time while eating dinner, consider buying the supplies to make comfy new cushions for the chairs, which you can do together during a home-economics lesson. It’s also nice to have a cozy reading nook for studying that isn’t an area that the child uses for other things, such as reading for pleasure on their bed. Even if you don’t have much space or budget, you can create a study reading area easily by repurposing the couch or chair cushions in a corner of a room that gets nice light. Bonus? Your pets will probably want to curl up there during study time, too!
Now that you have extra books, paper, and supplies, you’ll want to keep them organized so they look tidy and inviting — especially if your new classroom is in a room that the rest of the family also uses, such as the living or dining rooms. Pick up some storage bins, stackable file organizers, or rolling metal carts that will fit well in the space you have available. If you find items that are functional but don’t look that nice, no problem — simply get out the paint, stencils, stickers, glitter, and whatever other supplies you have, and decorate them for art class.
Paint and Decorate the Homeschooling Space
Paint the walls surrounding the space a cheerful color, or depending on your space, it may be helpful to use chalkboard or whiteboard paint so you have an area to write lessons or ideas where everyone can see them. Having the space decorated for “school” will help put kids into the right mindset when they sit down to do lessons, especially if the space is in a room where they normally watch television, eat, or do other activities outside of lessons. Hang inspirational art, maps, or materials relevant to your lessons. Add a plant or two — studies say that plants in workspaces help reduce stress and increase productivity. At the very least, they can factor into a lesson on botany!
If you have a yard, patio, communal courtyard, or even just a driveway, take your lessons outside. Plant anything from a large garden to an herb garden in small pots and use the process to teach children about agriculture. Once you have grown something edible, create a cooking lesson around it. Another option is to go to a park, or even for a walk, to observe and create lessons around things like birds, bees, butterflies, lizards, bugs, trees, and so much more. There is a lot you can see and learn from outside, all while getting the benefits of fresh air and movement.
For more tips on parenting, check out the other articles at scrippsamg.com.