Set up the ultimate workstation for your kids.
Jackie Headapohl Managing Editor
This school year, you can help set up your kids for success. It’s all about having the perfect study zone at home.
Lois Haron, owner of Designs in Decorator Wood & Laminates in Farmington Hills, has some advice for setting up your kids’ study area for looks — and function.
“Kids love their own space!” she says. “If you can do a corner desk on two walls, it is perfect, especially if you add about 18 inches on one side for three drawers: a file drawer, utility drawer for papers and a drawer above for stapler, notepads and other stuff.
“You should be able to fit a narrow drawer in the front of the open part of the desk, where the chair is, for ruler, pencils, paper clips; that is very useful,” she adds. “The desk doesn’t have to be very deep, only about 20 inches, because it goes back into the corner, so they can use that space while working on homework or a project to sort out their work.”
Lighting is also essential, she says.
“Rather than put a desk lamp on the desk, I love to do ‘floating’ shelves that are lighted underneath so that you have nothing extra on the desk to get in your way or knock over,” she explains. “You have lots of light to see what you are doing any time of the day or night when working there.”
Haron adds that if you choose to do a straight desk, try to make the space fit for two people, so your child can work or play games there with a friend.
See the sidebar for five cool ideas for creating a workspace for kids that will promote great study habits and inspire learning.
5 Tips For Success
- Find the right real estate. Every child learns differently. So, depending on the person doing the studying, the perfect space could be a quiet, bright corner of the house away from the hustle and bustle, or it could be in the midst of family life and activity. Experiment with each set up, periodically checking in with your child to see what’s working and what’s not.
- Upgrade visual learning. Is your child a visual learner? Upgrade study time in any sized space with a short throw projector that automatically adapts the projection brightness to the lighting conditions in the room. One option that allows you to control the projector wirelessly from a smartphone or tablet is the Casio Ultra Short Throw LampFree Projector XJ-UT351WN, which features a mercury-free laser and LED hybrid light source, making it an eco-friendly and safe option for young students.
- Embrace the principles of natural wellness. It is said that certain essential oils can promote focus and improve concentration. These can be diffused, rolled or simply inhaled to give students a boost when it comes time to cram for an exam.
- Make time for music. Studies have found that music can help improve memory. And making music can be an effective stress reliever in the face of school-induced stress. Consider outfitting your child’s study area with an affordable, lightweight instrument like a Casio CT-X Keyboard, which features an extensive library of 600 tones and 195 rhythms, supporting diverse musical genres. Whether it’s a 20-minute study break or a jam session once homework is completed, make it possible for musical creativity to come to life.
- Incorporate educational tech. Education tech tools can help synthesize classroom concepts. Be sure your child’s workspace incorporates new tech like ClassPad.net, a web-based mathematics resource for K-12 and beyond, which students can use to draw geometry figures freehand and input calculations as they would on real scratch paper. Great for study buddies, the tool allows for simultaneous work with calculation, graphing, geometry and data analysis/statistics.
Lois Haron can be reached at (248) 851-6989.