This Homework Station is a fantastic Back to School DIY project that can be made in an afternoon and will transform how the kids (and you!) feel about getting their work done. Taking you step by step through how to make your own, including the supplies needed, plus tips and inspiration along the way for your very own homework area. Get your homework supplies organised once and for all.
When your kids come home from school, is it easy for them to unpack their bags, get sorted, and start on their homework?
If you’re anything like me, it’s a quick rummage through the bags to check what they have to get done – and then searching for supplies as and when they’re needed.
This is OK of course – it gets the job done – but boy does it take time and cause some stress.
There has to be another way.
And there is!
As soon as we started using a Homework Station in our house – things got SO.MUCH.EASIER.
WHY A HOMEWORK STATION?
A Homework station is pretty self explanatory. It’s a place where kids can keep their homework, and all the supplies they need to get it done quickly and easily.
But why is it REALLY needed?
- It’s their area, and they feel ownership on it
- Homework feels a little more special when they have their own kit to get it done
- It’s their little home office!
- Both you and them can quickly and easily see what homework they have – what still needs to get done, and what needs taking back to school
- You can see when supplies are running low – and replenish before it becomes a stress last thing on a Sunday night when the shops are closed…
WHERE SHOULD THE HOMEWORK AREA BE?
This really is dependant on so many factors – most important being how much space you have, how old your kids are, and what type of homework they get.
I know that things change in life, and the kids grow up – so I wanted to create a Homework Station that would grow with them, and also be mobile so that it could easily be moved as they grew up and wanted a little more independence.
In our own home, my daughter likes to do her homework in the kitchen at the table or island, and we are more than happy with this as we can keep an eye on what she’s doing (she’s 10). I would always recommend keeping it in a place that’s quite central especially with little children so you can help them etc….
WHAT SHOULD THE HOMEWORK STATION BE?
Although we wanted somewhere in the kitchen to be where she kept all the Homework supplies, we didn’t want loads of stationary and paperwork around the kitchen for the rest of the time, and so I decided that something on wheels would be best.
I started to look at trolley style solutions that could easily be tucked away when not in use.
Enter – the IKEA Raskog Trolley.
I LOVE LOVE LOVE this thing! – seriously – this is the second one we have in the house (the first has been used for all sorts, including food storage in the kitchen, stationary storage in my home office, and now it’s toy storage in my daughters room).
It’s the perfect solution for a sturdy, good looking, but practical Homework Station.
(they come in loads of different colours which is great – but I got the black one because it goes with the kitchen, AND it will hide any marks from pens etc… so will hopefully look good for years to come).
For your home, you may decide that a trolley would be the perfect choice, but you may have a space you can add a small desk to a wall, or part of your home office, or some drawers in your kitchen – whatever you pick – make it right for you!
WHAT SHOULD BE IN THE HOMEWORK STATION?
Next step is to work out what needs to be in the station.
This is again dependant on your childs’ age, and what subjects they do.
Some examples are as follows: –
- Folders / Holders for their homework
- Post it notes
- Stapler and staples
- Small whiteboard**
- Clipboard / Hard surface to do their homework on**
- Possibly a Laptop / Kindle – or some way to access the internet if they are older
We decided on what we needed for ours, and collected it altogether: –
We also collected any storage containers that we *may* want to use – so that everything was in one place and ready to start putting it together: –
HOW TO CREATE YOUR DIY HOMEWORK STATION
This is the fun bit! You can of course put things wherever you want them, but here are some tips to help: –
- Think about easy access – for kids it’s especially important that they can find what they need AND put it back quickly – otherwise it won’t stay organised for long.
- Add most used items at the top, and lesser used items at the bottom
- Play around with storage and what you need so that you get the most for the space you have available.
With this in mind, this is how we set up ours: –
The top section has 3 magazine holders in it – 1 for incoming homework (we also use this for letters from school etc… so everything from her bag goes in here each day), 1 for homework that’s in progress, and 1 for things to keep (artwork from school, projects etc…).
It also houses any folders / clipboards she has, and a small whiteboard** that she uses a lot for working things out (so she doesn’t waste too much paper!).
And lastly – we labelled the top magazine holders so she always knows what goes where and (hopefully) things stay organised.
Next, we added all the supplies she needed and put in the right containers.
The closed box is for less used things like scissors etc…, and the pens are all quick and easy to grab.
… and I LOVE the pen container as it has a handle and she can grab that and have it right where she’s working (found at HomeSense – another shop I love!, no link I’m afraid as this store changes things so often and I can’t guarantee you’ll be able to find the exact one – a similar one would be THIS**).
On this level are her notebooks, her large pencil case**, and (because she’s like me and like to add a bit of something extra) a little artificial plant from IKEA (!).
This obviously means there’s space to grow into it as well, and would be the ideal place to keep her laptop if she gets one as a teenager.
So – here is the finished result, and we couldn’t be happier!
When she needs it she can roll it around to wherever she’s working, but when not in use it is tucked away in our random chimney breast space (which is also painted inside with chalkboard paint so it’s useful for writing any messages etc… for her.
I really hope this has given you some inspiration for creating your very own DIY Homework station.
It’s easy to create, but makes all the difference to how simple and stress free your homework time is – which to me is a HUGE bonus.
… and in case you want a quick summary – here’s how it was created from start to finish: –
6 STEPS TO CREATING YOUR OWN HOMEWORK STATION
- Work out where you want to keep it
- Decide what you want to use for the station itself
- Decide what needs to go into it and buy your supplies
- Store everything (get storage if necessary)
- Label containers so it’s easy to put things back AND find things
- Use and enjoy!
P.S. If you want to get even more organised this school year, you definitely want to check out my Back to School planner – which is a printable planner you can use to create your very own school file and keep all that important information to hand (it even includes pages for memories of each school year!). Take a look HERE.