I will show you the important steps you should consider when deciding to create a learning environment for your children.
Let’s align our expectations here. I will leave the cute room recommendations for Pinterest!
Keep reading to find out how you can make a virtual or homeschool space for your kids to learn!
Understanding your child needs and who they are
Before you go to Pinterest looking for ideas to build a learning space, take the time to learn about your child’s needs and wants.
You know your child better than anybody else. Ask yourself questions like this:
- Is your child active or relaxed? Can they stay sit for a long time?
- Do they prefer quiet spaces or they like background noise (music, people talking, birds)?
- Do they prefer open areas? Or a small cozy space?
- What motivates them? What sparks their interest? What do they love learning about?
If you are not sure about the answer to these questions, just ask!
See what others think of that specific child you are setting the space for, ask your fiance or your other kids.
Heck, you can even ask their teachers about their behavior when it comes to learning.
Make it personal, this might be a way for you to spend more time with your child.
Specific learning spot for your child
If your house isn’t too big, no worries. You don’t need a whole extra room to set up a child learning space, don’t fall for that!
What your child needs is a dedicated learning space at home.
And why is that?
Because it’s the only way to develop your child’s creativity, sharpen their focus, and increase their motivation to read and learn.
If space is tight for you be creative. There’s always an empty corner, space in the balcony, or the front porch.
The key here is to have a consistent spot. A place a child can sit every day, go through a routine.
Adults work like that too. Don’t you sit in the same place at home when you work? I do.
Just create a space that’s necessary for your child and that fits your budget.
What kind of items are necessary for the learning space?
That’s what we’re going to see in the next topics, onto!
Importance of a comfortable space
If your child can’t focus it might be for this reason. They can’t feel safe and comfortable in the learning room.
Make a place where learning can easily be extended, let the environment help your kid focus, not distract them.
Little things will make a difference. Maybe they like colder places so put a fan in their learning space, or they like dad’s jazz music so you buy them a speaker.
I prepared some ergonomic tips that will help kids stay focused and comfortable for a long time.
- Always have the computer or tablet at eye level, this will prevent headaches and neck pain
- Use the 90-90-90 rule, where the child’s knees, hips, and elbows are at a 90-degree angle.
- Use a comfy chair. The important point here is, your kid will decide what’s a comfy chair out of their minds. So don’t go buy an expense chair, maybe they think your table chair is comfortable.
- Have them take breaks. Here in my house, I let them play with fidget toys when they feel tired. Things like a stress ball, LEGO pieces, etc.
What about them visuals?
Look for visual ways to inspire your kids’ creativity. Their favorite characters banner, or a paint they really like, maybe family photos. Find what motives them and keep them inspired.
Colors are also important for our kid’s space. Research shows that colors in our learning environment can boost mood, performance, and well-being.
Give them a voice on ideas for decoration with their favorite things such as cartoon characters, favorite color, etc.
Keep things purposeful and simple here, it’s so easy to overthink this part. Remember, visuals will help but too many of them might be a distraction.
Less is more: Declutter the Space
Think about the learning needs of your child. Cut out the unnecessary stuff that will only look good in a picture. These cute things will end up distracting your toddler from learning.
So…how do I know what the unnecessary things are?
I prepared a list showing you what should be necessary for your kids based on their age.
Kindergarteners (ages 3 to 5)
- need space for hands-on activities like art, drawing, painting.
- kids at this age only need a flat surface so they can scribble things, they can’t sit around for long
Elementary school kids (age 6 to 12)
- Enforce organization and ground rules about the learning space
- At this age, they can focus for longer and study for longer periods of time
High School students (age 13 to 18)
- will spend most of their school day in this learning environment
- It makes sense to get quality items for their learning space, something durable that they might take to college.
Too many books, supplies, toys might look good on Pinterest ideas but will distract your kid.
Be okay with leaving empty spaces, you don’t need to clutter every space in your child’s learning space, less is more!
Lighting in the learning room
Don’t overlook lighting in your learning space.
Research in 2016 showed the importance of natural light and productivity. So put your kid close to natural light.
If space doesn’t have a window nearby place mirrors across the window, this will reflect the natural light in the room.
Natural light is preferred but if you don’t have it just get a lamp. It can be used for nighttime as well.
I recommend using a desk lamp with an LED. This will reduce eye fatigue. Put it on the other side of your child’s dominant hand. For example, if he’s a righty, the lamp goes on the left side.
The Bottom Line
Creating a learning space for your child might be overwhelming so stay true to the steps in this article.
Pick a specific spot in your house where your kid will have the consistency of learning.
Make sure it’s a comfortable, well-lit, visual, and simple learning place.
Most important, pay attention to your children’s needs and their learning traits.
In fact you might be suppressing their learning if you don’t understand what works for their age.
Check our guide on Age Appropriate Toys for Learning