Back-to-school means back to homework! We're bringing you some easy homework station ideas that will have everything your kids may need at their fingertips. Give everything a home and you'll never have to worry about a disorganized school mess again!
Whether we like it or not, another school year is about to begin. With that comes the H-word… HOMEWORK. (Lots and lots of homework, in some cases…) I'm a huge believer in creating a homework space, or homework station as it is often called, where you post assignments, keep a due-date calendar, and keep all the supplies and materials needed. This way, when it comes to homework, there's a set system, place, and routine for everything. I firmly believe that homework stations can be grossly over-complicated and intimidating! But they certainly don't have to be.
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Creating a homework station in your home can be as easy or complex as you want it to be. Ours is a simple desk area with supplies nearby. Some have incredible systems of magnets, charts, carts, and all sorts of cuteness. However you prefer to do it, hold onto your hats because today I’m going to share with you a wide variety of tips and ideas to create a homework station that is just right for your family! (Pssst you can even use these ideas if you don't have kids or homework in your house! Organization and functionality is universal, kids or no kids.) Also, while I'm here, quick PSA reminder to jump into the Back to Productivity challenge this month if you haven't; it's not too late!
Ok, let's get on with it already. I now present…
OUR HOMEWORK STATION
When we first bought our house a few years ago, one of the first things I noticed was that there wasn't a good gathering place for the kids. Sure, there was the kitchen counter and a formal dining room with a table. But in my years of raising little, creative, messy, artistic people, I've learned how helpful it is to have an area for them to color, draw, and of course, work on projects and homework! Otherwise, pencils, art supplies, and glitter glue are constantly stacked and scattered all throughout my house.
We created our own homework station by adding some navy blue cabinets, a sturdy quartz countertop, lots of drawers and cubby spaces, and a MILLION power outlets under the desk. It has now become one of the most-used areas of our house because it doubles as a homework station and arts and crafts area.
HOMEWORK STATION ESSENTIALS
You can do whatever works best for you in your home! As long as you have an area that's dedicated for the kids to have everything they need for homework or arts and crafts, then you're golden. Here's how we keep everything organized in our house.
If you read and/or followed my summer clipboards post, you know how much I love and depend on clipboards. We love using our summer clipboards and will be rotating them out for our school year clipboards once school starts. Clipboards are such a good way to easily display important papers your kids bring home from school. They also have really helped us stay on top of due dates and deadlines. Each child has one and we keep all their homework assignments, calendars, birthday invitations, or whatever else needs our attention and pertains to that child.
One glance at the clipboard easily tells us that the child has something they need to work on if we see any papers. It has really helped us to stop forgetting about papers that need to be done! We even add spelling lists or book reports that aren't due for a few weeks.
I got my cute clipboards from Target in the dollar spot, but you can also get clipboards for super cheap on Amazon, at Walmart, or even the dollar store. Wherever you get them, definitely jump onto the clipboard bandwagon! You can easily hang them on your wall using wire Command Hooks. You can also add magnets to the back of them and hang them on the fridge if that's where you have the available space. As long as they're easily seen and accessible, it doesn't matter where they're hanging!
PLACE TO STORE IMPORTANT PAPERS
Losing important school papers is the absolute worst! I should know, I used to be the queen of doing it. Those extra random papers can really accumulate. You know, those papers that don't have a due date, papers regarding extracurricular activities, or whatever else. We try to keep those papers somewhere in our homework station where they won't get lost or forgotten about.
You can keep a file folder with that type of paperwork tucked safely in a drawer. Hanging wall file organizers are also really helpful. You could designate one basket per person in your family and keep anything important pertaining to that person. You could also divide your organizer by type of paperwork. For example, designate the bottom space for homework that needs to be done, the middle for homework that needs to be checked/signed off by you, and the top for school forms/fliers.
However you do it, have a DESIGNATED place for important papers so they don't get shoved in a dark corner of your house somewhere, only to be lost forever! (…not that I would know about that…he'em…)
HOMEWORK STATION CALENDAR
As you know from my “Plan a Year in Advance” post, here at the Page home, we think the use of calendars is ULTRA important. It's a great idea to hang one in your homework station to keep track of homework, projects, upcoming tests, homework assignments, and all other important dates.
There are many different types of calendars you could use. A personal favorite of mine is a simple large 12-month paper calendar that you can easily hang and can get practically anywhere. They're great because if you know things a few months in advance, you can easily write those items down as well as all the current monthly items that you need to keep track of.
You could choose to post a calendar that only consisted of the current month, but you wouldn't be able to write things down in advance as they come in. And as much as I love a great dry-erase board, you don't have to worry about anything you write down accidentally being erased on a paper calendar. That's always a huge plus!
HOMEWORK STATION STORAGE
Ever have one of those homework moments when you couldn't find a pencil or calculator for the life of you? Yeah. Not so fun. I recommend keeping common homework and art supplies within arm's reach of your homework station so there is NO excuse for them to not do their math!
I have little plastic baskets below the upper cabinets that I use to keep projects that are in progress, electronic cords, office supplies I don't want the kids to have access to (tacks, ink pads, staplers, etc.), or whatever else is floating around the desk and needs containing.
The biggest lower drawers are filing drawers that we use to store printer paper, coloring books, construction paper, card stock, notebooks, and other paper items. The drawers are full of crayons, markers, colored pencils, and pencils the kids will need. Pretty darn simple, but works pretty darn well! Here are some other ideas if you don't have the same setup as we do…
SIMPLE DIY HOMEWORK STATION ORGANIZATION IDEAS
- Cutlery or Shower Caddy – You can get these inexpensively at Walmart, Amazon, or even the dollar store. Store each compartment in the caddy with a specific homework supply like crayons, scissors, glue, pencils, etc. If your caddy only has 2 long compartments, just add plastic cups to each row and add your individual supplies to each cup.
- Over-the-Door Organizer – Make sure to get one that is see-through so your kids can easily see what supplies are in each storage pocket. Keep the most-used items at the bottom where the kids can easily reach!
- Art Cart – You've seen these super cute 3-tier rolling metal carts before! Walmart and Amazon always have them in stock. Not only can you fill your art cart with all your homework supplies, but also notebooks, counting aids, flashcards, books, and so much more!
It's so easy to make your homework station storage work for your space!
If your kids are anything like mine, then the first thing they probably do when they walk through the door after school is take their backpacks off and throw them on the ground. So fun, right? *Rolls eyes* To avoid breaking an ankle and unnecessary messes, designate a space for backpacks!
Our kids have cubbies in our mudroom that they use when they're not actively doing homework. Otherwise, they hang their backpacks on the back of their designated chair at our homework station so they can easily grab anything they need from their bag and add the homework to it once they've finished.
Find an area of the house that works for you and hang or sit backpacks where they're out of the way, but easily accessible. We go so far to put shoes, jackets, lunch boxes, and anything else they may need to take to school with the backpacks before we go to bed. Keeping everything together will make those crazy school mornings run much smoother!
PRODUCTIVITY BOOT CAMP
Are you loving how we took a major pain point and helped you tackle it like the boss that you are?! If you're nodding your head yes vigorously, then you most def want to check out Productivity Boot Camp! It's a super awesome online video program that helps you to conquer even more pain points in your life like this.
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Alright, well there you go! Those are some of the ideas I have for creating a functional (and super cute, obvs) homework station in your own home – no matter what size or shape space you have to work with! Do you have a homework station in your house? How do you do it? Please share below so we can try your ideas, too!
Looking for more great ideas?