How to set your home up for homeschooling

LAURUS LIFE | Lifestyle

Homeschooling is back so here are some tips to help you thrive


For any parents who managed to get through the extended period of homeschooling last year, January will have brought back a lot of memories. But without a new series of Tiger King and with the novelty of banana bread having long since worn off, there are still ways that you and your family can thrive in this situation.

At Laurus we take a lot of care and consideration when laying out our homes to ensure that you get the maximum usage from every space, which has been crucial over the last 10 months when families have been juggling homeworking and these times of homeschooling.

Here are some tips to help you make the most of your homes while the kids are out of school:

Pick a ‘school zone’


Last March when people had to suddenly start working from home full-time, we all learned lots of lessons about how to do it most effectively and one of those is to have one area of the home where you do your work. This helps to ensure that you’re focused while you’re there and able to switch off while you’re not working.

For kids this is even more crucial. Trying to get them to concentrate on their times tables with their toys all around them is always going to be a big ask, and you also want them to be able to keep ‘home’ and ‘school’ separate even when they’re all taking place in the same home.

Of course, where this space is will depend on what’s available and where you will be. If you have a home office, setting up a small table and chair near you will help them focus on their schoolwork (we can’t promise the same for your own productivity!) and give you the chance to supervise in between your own Teams meetings.

Make sure it’s fit for purpose


Another lesson learned from almost a year of homeworking is that what might have worked for the odd WFH day might not be good enough for doing it every day. You need a comfortable and supportive chair and a flat surface large enough for your laptop and any papers you’re using, and your kids need the same thought putting into their workspace too.

They might have a child-size chair and desk set up in their bedroom already, though as we’ve mentioned that might not be the best room for them to concentrate in, so you could consider temporarily moving them elsewhere.

Children need to be comfortable wherever you find a place for them, otherwise they’ll be fidgety and distracted, so you may need to experiment with cushions, particularly if they’re smaller children sitting at grown-up tables.

Plan ahead for what they might need


When kids are in school, they’re surrounded by all the stationery they could ever need, but this might not be the case at home. Teachers will be factoring this into the work they assign, but it’s still worth stocking on up on the essentials (crayons, kid-friendly scissors, blank paper, glue) at the supermarket and keep them close to your child’s workspace.

This will save you too many emergency trips to the shops to get that thing they need to create their own dragon, as well as being called away from what you’re doing every five minutes to help them find the scissors. At least until they lose them.

With non-essential shops closed during this lockdown you may have to improvise when it comes to storage, but it’s important for their concentration to try and avoid clutter and distractions.

Be realistic about what you can achieve


It might be tempting to try and create the ultimate homeschooling space for your children, but there’s a few things to remember. Firstly, that this won’t last forever, and at some point they will be back at school, so remember to think about the long-term before making any drastic changes in your home.

Secondly, it’s important to be realistic about what you can achieve. You may be working full-time and having to homeschool at the same time in the midst of a global pandemic. Looking after yourself and your family is the only thing you really need to achieve right now, so hopefully these tips will help you set up your home to do that without too much fuss or disruption.

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