Our homes are full of distractions. Clutter, noises, electronics – the list goes on and on. With so many things competing for your child’s attention, it can be difficult to fully engage and focus on his/her homework. Therefore, the best place to do homework is somewhere that minimizes visual and auditory distractions.
The ideal homework setting should have these five qualities:
There should be minimal noise. That means that cell phones are turned off during homework time! Children finish their homework much faster and do better quality work when they are not constantly distracted by cellphones. Ideally, no one else should be in the room at the same time that your child is doing homework. A room with a closed door is usually better than an open space, and you could have a “Homework Time” sign on the door (so others won’t disturb). You may have to plan ahead to make sure there is a quiet room available to work, particularly, if siblings share a room.
- Work at a desk
Students are generally more focused sitting at a desk- not on the floor, on the coach, or in bed! The chair should be comfortable – but not too comfortable! It’s not a good idea to have a reclining chair (or you could disable the reclining ability of the chair).
- Clear space
Many students work on desks that have many things on them – papers, toys, supplies, and electronics. This is very inefficient! Most students are easily distracted by the things around them, especially when they are doing homework. Instead of giving your child the option to engage in the things on the desk (magazine, iPhone, stapler), your child should clear the surface BEFORE he/ she begins doing homework. The less on the desk, the better. A desk should look clear, clean, and boring! That’s right – the desk surface should only include essential items that your child needs to do homework and little else.
- Limited visual distractions
There should be minimal visual distractions directly over and around your child’s work space. These include bright posters, distracting toys, fluorescent post-its, etc. These things catch a child’s eye, distracting him/her from the work at hand. You can have these things in the room, just not in the visual area of where your child does homework. It’s all about location. Therefore, it’s a great idea to move these visual distractions to other parts of the room or completely remove them.
- Good lighting
It’s very important to have a proper amount of lighting for homework. Lighting should not be extreme (too bright or too dim), but it should allow for adequate visual stimulation. A dimly lit room can cause drowsiness and is hard on your child’s eyes.
Overall, children who do homework in a place that possesses these five qualities will be more efficient and effective in their work.
Call us at 212-706-1044 or email us if you’d like assistance or have any questions.