School is beginning this month for many families, which poses an excellent time to transform that extra room, alcove, or nook into a homework space! Our design team has helpful tips and tricks to elevate these spaces and make them both beautiful and functional. Read on for insights to make areas in your home ideal for focusing and studying.
Select Low-Traffic Areas
When setting up study spaces in your home, consider the ability for your children to stay focused based on their surroundings. With this in mind, we caution against creating homework nooks in areas where the television is visible, there is a lot of conversation and noise, and students are more likely to get off task. This typically means you’re ruling out some of the larger rooms in your home, including the family room and kitchen.
The ideal space is one where your children can look at a blank wall or window, and there is not a lot of foot traffic and accompanying noise. Rooms to consider include the dining room, bedrooms or offices, hallway alcoves, or a basement. Having a door to the space is an additional bonus, as this offers you the flexibility to check in on your student regularly, but also allows you to close the door if you need to quiet out other distractions in the home.
Choose Comfortable Chairs
Your students (and you!) may be in this space for long periods of time, so it’s critical to be comfortable. Consider how your children will be using the space, and the seating that is most compatible. For example, if your student will be up and down often or only has quick homework projects, an upholstered chair similar to one you’d find in a dining room is adequate. Older students will likely be in front of computer screens for hours at a time though, so a more office-style chair with ergonomic support is preferred. Selecting a chair with arms too provides a spot to rest elbows and helps to promote better posture.
Whenever possible, the first preferred source of light for a homework nook is the sun and its natural light. If this is not available though based on where the area is located, then consider lighting that will provide adequate visibility while not causing glares on computer screens. We caution away from using a single overhead light source, as this can cause eye strain and uncomfortableness. Instead, we prefer lighting at different levels, including floor lamps, table lamps and desk lamps. Having multiple sources of light at different levels is more aesthetically pleasing and comfortable visually too.
Supporting your children to stay organized during the school year is a huge benefit to their learning and overall success. In the homework nook, we recommend considering storage and organization to make sure the space is easy-to-use and streamlined for your student. One way to accomplish this is to pair a desk with bookshelves. Bookshelves allow your student to have a space for everything, and are also easy to navigate when finding materials. Having a place for supplies, and minimizing clutter, helps students to focus on their homework and not worry about where supplies are or that their papers are piling up. You can also get creative with storage options, including decorative baskets, bins, and shelving.
Having a dedicated homework nook in your home is a great way to show your student the importance of homework and studying, and also provides a functional area for your children to focus. Happy studying!