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Here’s how you can create a homeschool nook for remote learning

BY DONNA DUARTE-LADD

Like most parents, when the COVID-19 quarantine first started, I threw together makeshift spaces for the kids thinking (like most of you) remote would be temporary. 

Soon these areas turned into borrowed furniture from neighbors, and although there are more significant worries in the world right now, the area started to feel a bit dreary.

And like many of you, I have accepted that remote life may be part of our lives at least for another year, and it was time to make the kid’s homeschool nook permanent. To save my sanity, I reached out to Decorist for Bed Bath & Beyond. Through Bed Bath & Beyond — Decorist offers its services at $199 per room. In case you have never heard of — Decorist is an online interior design company that makes decorating a home easy and affordable. Executed entirely online (ahead of their time!), Decorist’s roster of over 400 professional interior designers will help you design any room in the home, staying within your style and budget. And for customers not ready to start a full design project, they can consult Decorist’s Design Bar to have quick design questions answered by Decorist’s team of interior designers, completely free of charge.

As a creative person, I am the first to admit it is tough to let go of decor control, especially with my youngest son being autistic. Having to explain to the Decorist team that my four-year-old likes to nibble on plants, loves outer space, and gravitates towards strong design felt like a gamble. Like here you go…welcome to my eclectic tribe…good luck.

So how did Decorist designer Mikayla Keating do? Superb. While unpacking the boxes of goods, I felt this former preschool teacher turn interior designer grasped not only the kids’ needs but mine. Both my kids love the new homeschool nook, especially the youngest, who is drawn in by the vibrant art and pieces like a comfortable chair and a pouf for when break time calls. 

 

Decorist Designer Mikayla Keating Shares Helpful Tips When Incorporating a Homeschool Nook in Your Home Space:

Do you feel that having a space designated for your child’s learning is important?

Yes! Having a designated space helps your child focus and be ready to learn. 

When setting up a school nook, what should a parent look for? As you know, many New York parents are tight for space to begin with. What is the best way to go about creating this space?

Look for a space that is quiet, in a corner, or has good lighting. The nook does not have to be large, but a place where your child can sit down and feel comfortable. A simple desk & comfy desk chair are all you need to create a school nook. 

 

When you work on design projects for clients, what do you keep in mind, regarding their space?

I always keep in mind how they will be using the space day-to-day. Apart from creating something that they love, I want to create something that is functional for their everyday needs.

How can you design a homeschooling space for your child that blends into your home decor without spending a fortune?

I suggest choosing pieces that can be multifunctional like a storage side table or coffee table. Adding a small desk with some storage next to or above it is an easy way to create a designated space without spending a fortune. 

When is a child-size or adult size desk appropriate? (At what size/age do they graduate to a full-size desk?)

When choosing a desk size, it is best to select one based on your child’s size. The desk should be about 8inches from the seat of the chair to promote good posture. In most cases, the best time to upgrade to a full-size desk is when your child is in their preteens. 

Is the chair choice important? Should it be a proper chair, or can it be a pouf or something less traditional?

Your chair choice is very important. It needs to be a proper chair since this helps children concentrate and promotes good posture. The chair should allow your child to sit with both feet flat on the floor, and the top of the desk should be about 8 inches from the top of the seat. 

 

What about lighting? Is it necessary to add a lamp?

Good lighting is important, as well. Your child will be less likely to strain their eyes and will help them focus. If you are able to, set up your school nook by a window for natural light. 

What types of things make space personal for a child? How can you make it special for them?

Accessories and artwork are a great way to make the space feel special for your child. Add a fun pencil holder or desk organizer to add some personality to the desk. A soft rug added under the desk will also help your child feel like it is their own space. I also suggest adding a fun weekly calendar on the wall by the desk to help your child keep track of their assignments. 

What are the must-haves for the desk? (i.e. notepads, pencil cup, pencil sharpener, etc.)

My must-haves for any desk are a pencil cup, a desk lamp, a magazine file for loose papers, and sticky notes. 

 

Credits:

Marmalade™ Jensen Desk, $299.99

Marmalade™ Jensen Accent Chair in White, $79.99

iCanvas Astronaut II 40″x26″ Canvas Wall Art, $125.99

Lorena Canals Milky Way 4’7 x 6’7 Washable Area Rug in Black/White, $299.99

Marmalade™ Brenner Table Lamp in Grey/Natural, $49.99

Taylor Madison Designs® Rectangular Natural Braided Maize Basket with Seagrass Stripes, $64.99

Nearly Natural 18-Inch Artificial Sansevieria with Ceramic Planter, $59.99

Surya Desoto Pouf in Tan, $178.99

*As you can imagine many people are shopping for school home pieces, these items may sell out, please add your email to be notified when pieces will be back in stock

All the merchandise from this story is courtesy of Bed Bath & Beyond (bedbathandbeyond.com). Thank you, Bed Bath & Beyond — we couldn’t have done it without you!

This story first appeared on our sister publication newyorkfamily.com.

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