It’s that time of year again! Summer is coming to a close and the kids are getting ready to go back to school. The leaves are beginning to change color and those cool, refreshing mornings are starting to occur more frequently. Some folks, like me, get excited for this time of year. I love the changes taking place around me.
Schools are preparing for the return of students, getting classrooms set up and materials organized. Every parent of school aged children knows the drill- pick up the supply list and head to the big box store for this year's school supplies. Teachers do a wonderful job preparing you for the classroom, but rarely prepare you for what you need at home.
Adults that work from home know the importance of having their own quiet space to work in. The exact same thing is true for children. A child that has his or her own space to study and read is more likely to succeed in school.
1. Desk or Study Area
This may seem like a no-brainer, but many students don’t have their own work space. Having their own distraction free area allows them to do their work and take pride in their space. Consider your child and their specific needs. Maybe a traditional desk isn't
ideal for your student. Don't be afraid to think out of the box to help them find the perfect study area furniture.
Give them a desk or alternative that none of their friends will have- shop local! Don't forget to bring your child along to help in the selection of their new furniture, after all, it is for them. You want them to have something that is functional, but something they will take pride in as well.
The chair is another obvious furniture piece. Your child needs a comfortable place to sit while working at his or her desk or space. This could mean anything from a traditional chair that you might find at a furniture store, to a bean bag, to a yoga ball. Some students even prefer to stand while they do their work. Talk to your student to determine what would be best for him or her. It’s really fun to mix and match the desk with a unique chair.
3. Desk Organizer
You don't want to invest in the perfect study space only to have it cluttered with art supplies and toys. Help your child stay organized so they can utilize their space. There are many ways you can help your child organize. You can do a traditional office supply organizer or you can again, think out of the box. There are so many delightful ways to arrange supplies. One of my favorites is using old mason jars for pens and pencils. You can even use old drinking glasses. Kids can sort their pencils, scissors and other supplies with the right tools at their disposal.
4. Book Shelf/Additional Storage
Another great tool to help your kiddo stay organized is a great book shelf! Just like us, children need a place to store their books. A bookshelf or even a few decorative crates are a great place for this. It’s also perfect to keep additional supplies, like tablets, flash cards, coloring books, large art supplies and more. Kids are more likely to read their books and use their supplies if they have easy access to them.
Your boss doesn't ask you to come to work in a dark office, so don't ask your little learner to do it either! Every great space needs light. Make sure your child has an adequate light source to work with. Nothing is worse than trying to complete homework while you are sitting in the dark squinting at your papers.
There are many different styles of light sources to consider. While desk lamps are definitely the most common, you really need to decide what is right for your child. Think about the size of your child's work space. Do they have room for a desk lamp? If not, maybe opt for a hanging light.
6. Inspiring Decor
Teachers go to great lengths to create an inspiring classroom for your student. They work tirelessly to design a space that is functional, inspires learning, and is eye catching. Why should your child's space at home be any different?
There are so many great decor options that can also be geared towards learning. Maps, globes, clocks, and art work are all wonderful decor tools that can teach at the same time. I don't know any child that isn't fascinated gazing at a map or globe learning about the geography of the world.
7. Backpack Storage
This is critical to a successful year! Every child needs a designated spot to place his or her backpack. How many times have we heard “I can’t find it.” Or “I lost it.” A simple wall hook will eliminate this problem!
There are so many great options to choose from, you will surely be able to find the perfect hook organizer to fit your space. We have chosen this little blue number for our house. Right now, our son is not yet school age. We utilize this hook for his jackets and sweaters for a quick grab-and-go. The same would hold true for a book bag.
8. Bulletin Board
Another asset for staying organized is a great bulletin board. More for your sanity, this is a great place to post upcoming field trips, teacher’s notes, a family calendar, and so much more! Although we don’t yet have school age children, we utilize our bulletin board daily. It allows us to keep up with the family scheduling and appointments. It’s also a great place to post reminders and your child's art.
There are the 8 things your child (and you) need for a great school year! Feel free to chime in if you have something your child or family couldn't survive the school year without.