If you’re considering setting up a home learning environment for your children, there are many things to take into account. You might just need a space where your child can study and do homework. Or, you may need a room for full time home schooling. Whatever your needs, you’ve got a few things to take into account.
A home learning environment is a reflection of your family’s style and home. However, it’s a space you’ll be using specifically for “school” type of work and the development of children. You want the room and its content to fit your needs as well as your child’s needs.
Creating A Home Learning Environment
Kids needs a space to try new things. Children learn so much through play! If you give them freedom to explore their interests, learning becomes something natural and fun. It’s a part of their daily routine. Consider the age(s) of your children and their personal learning styles and interests.
You know your child best, so creating the right of environment they need shouldn’t be too hard. If you’re creating a home learning environment for your preschool aged child, it should be based around rule-based play, activities and exploration zones. However, for older children, a desk space and quiet study space are more practical.
Create A Space
You should designate a specific space for your home learning environment, even if that space has to do double duty with another family need. Show your children that learning is a special experience that deserves it’s own space, even if it’s just a table that gets put away after homework or school is over.
In the best case scenario, you should use a space with lots of natural light and away from noise and distractions. It’s best not to make your child’s bedroom into a classroom or study space. Children really need their own space where they can disconnect from the stress school and homework can sometimes bring. This also minimizes their temptation to do other things in their room.
Keep supplies tailored to your child’s interests and age readily available – building blocks, a reading corner, paint, crafting materials or dress-up, so that you can use these props and tools for further learning and bring out the fun in the experience. Have a computer set up with parental restrictions. This way, your child can easily research topics which spark their interest. You can also use specific sites and software like cazoommaths.com/us to support their learning.
Keep It Functional
A successful learning space is a highly functional one. Start by aiming to minimize any clutter that could distract from the process of learning. Don’t have too many books, supplies or toys out on display at once as they can lose impact and interest for a young learner. A really good idea can often be investing in a modular storage unit with some open sections and some basket storage, so that you can organize and hide away some supplies and props and have others on display, varying it according to what you are currently learning about or the season.
A few, very engaging items is far better than too much choice. Where possible, keep resources accessible – consider a book shelf like this one for younger children so that the covers are displayed and it’s easier for them to make a selection, and try to ensure they can reach what they need easily. This makes for a better experience than you having to hand things over constantly! If you have the space, create different learning zones – a book corner, a messy play table, and a computer desk.
Reflect Your Child’s Personality
Make the room fun by showing off projects and artwork your child has done, or incorporate colorful wall charts which also serve a learning process such as letters, numbers, planets or animals. Let each learner make their personal mark on the space so that they feel a sense of ownership and purpose about the home learning environment. This makes them much more engaged in the learning process.