For some years I have had to struggle with my children doing their homework in the sitting room where all manner of activities are taking place, sometimes visitors are there and talking or the television is on, thus disturbing the children in concentrating fully in their studies.
I had to devise a way of giving my children maximum attention for their school work, thus the idea of a study room in my house was born.
I decided that they can have a study room in my room since I had no extra room and their rooms were fully packed.
I have a table and a shelf full of books where they can all do their school homework before I go to bed and it worked well before they all went to boarding schools.
The idea of having children to do their school work in the sitting room where the children cannot fully pay attention to what they are doing should be discouraged by parents, it will be very naïve of a parent to think that children can actually study when they can watch soap operas going on the television with one eye while pretending to be reading seriously, thus a little space meant just for children’s study is very important.
Get some space where you think is conducive for the children to do their homework or study.
This place should only be for study time, I know many houses in towns are quite small, so if there is no extra room in the house. Convert the children’s bedroom on one side to hold a study room. If not there are double deckers which can hold a bed on top and give space underneath the top Decker big enough to hold a desk.
You can even use some molding, trim, or yardsticks and rulers to separate that space from the rest of the room, then paint and decorate the area to support studies.
Some parents are even opening up closets and converting them into work areas and finding alternatives for clothing storage such as armoires and under-the-bed containers.
Whatever you do it’s important to make that area a study only zone.
Take distractions out of view. Instead of boy bands or movie star posters use school charts and study aids in the homework zone. Keep toys off the desk and preferably more than an arms length away.
As much as we want to give our children the freedom of choosing what they want, we as parents have a duty to censor what they are reading from the books or the internet if at all you have installed a computer for your children.
Checking on them frequently without warning will discourage them to read any unwanted materials.
Therefore make sure that all the books arranged on the shelves are materials that are appropriate for the children. Arrange the books on the shelves neatly so that the room looks organized.
Also get holders for pens, pencils, rulers and all the traditional accessories at hand. A drawer keeps these things out of view, so they are better placed on the desk where they can be reached easily.
Furniture & Lighting
Lighting is very important; always make sure your child has appropriate lighting, to prevent them from straining their eyes in the darkness or in a dark room.
Ensure that the windows are big enough to let in enough light to see during the day, or if the lighting system is not good, one can always add a table lamp to help the child read well. The window is also important because it will also bring in enough air circulation in the room, since most of the time the door to the room will remain closed when the children are studying and of course we don’t want them fainting in the process.
No matter how you decorate or adapt your child’s home study zone it is important to make an area that they enjoy spending time in that’s comfortable but is also free of distractions.
Teach them to be responsible, in that they should know what is expected of them, they should be able to clean and arrange their rooms as well as study rooms. Little ones that like their study area are more likely to spend time there so remember to let them make some of the decisions.