Think about the area you have dedicated for your home school space. Is it calm? Bright? Comfortable? Or do you have a makeshift spot in your dining room, kitchen, or another room in your house?
While a home school classroom doesn’t need to look like a learning space in a traditional brick-and-mortar school, it is important to ensure you have a dedicated area that’s conducive to focusing on academics. Every student finds comfort and efficiency in different design elements and supplies—it’s not a one-size-fits-all setup. Additionally, an effective learning environment can vary by age—what works for high school students may not be appropriate for elementary schoolers. However, there are a few key considerations for creating the best home school classroom for your situation.
- Lighting. Natural light is the best, as it offers some stimulation and a connection to the outdoors. If your classroom space doesn’t have access to natural light, bright lamps are a good substitute, especially the ones that simulate natural daylight.
- Technology. Laptops are very convenient for taking your schoolwork on the go, but a desktop computer with a monitor is a more ergonomic solution if you’re able to have a dedicated workspace. In fact, some newer monitors are comparable to small TVs in both size and resolution, making your screen time a little easier on the eyes. A wireless mouse makes navigation effortless, and a headset is a nice accessory if you want to be hands-free for online lectures and interactive activities.
- Supplies. Computers are obviously the cornerstone of your online learning environment, but sometimes it’s just easier to take notes the old-fashioned way. Consider stocking up on notebooks, pens, dry-erase boards and markers, highlighters, and other tactile study tools to make your academic life easier. Along the same lines, you may even think about placing a large wall calendar in your space to help you prioritize assignments and deadlines.
- Storage. If your home school classroom is a dedicated room, it’s easy to designate bins, shelves, and drawers to your academic life. However, organization becomes more challenging if your primary workspace is in a dining room, kitchen table, or other shared room. Think about designating an area of a cabinet, hutch, or other piece of furniture for school supplies—just be sure you’re consistent about where you tuck away your essentials. Is your workspace mobile or constantly changing? Tote bags, portfolios, and binders are your bets bet—not to mention a laptop and a strong WiFi signal!
- Inspiration. Whether this comes in the form of motivational posters or a display of your own successes and achievements, a source of motivation is a key component of your learning space. Inspiration can even be found in a poem, song lyrics, or a painting, no matter where you set up your academic hub.
Your learning space can be anything you want it to be. It can consume an entire room, or it can be a dedicated work station. It can be bright and whimsical, or it could be more toned-down and studious. However you decide to design this spot, it’s important for it to be comfortable, welcoming, and equipped with everything you need to succeed.