Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Portable Homework Station and After School Routine Printable

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There is a part of back to school I don't look forward to. Homework. On good nights, it is usually just busy work, on bad nights it is a huge fight to get it done. Homework is one the biggest stresses of the school year for our family, so we try to do everything we can to make sure that after school goes as smoothly as possible.

The two biggest things that have made the biggest difference for our family is our after school routine and our a portable homework station. After searching for crayons or glue, one too many times, I created a station. It is portable which means it can go anywhere she is doing her homework. It travels really well too, so if she needs to do her homework on the go, that can happen too.

A portable homework station is easy to pull together, especially this time of year when there are an abundance of school supplies in the store. Any sort of container with a handle will work for your station. I love a container that has separate sections, so as the crayons and colored pencils lose their boxes there is a way to separate them, but any container with a handle, as long as it is large enough will work.

In our Homework Station:
  • Crayons
  • Colored Pencils
  • Tape
  • Mini Stapler and Staples
  • Glue Sticks
  • Bottle of Glue
  • Pencils
  • Pencil Sharpener
  • Ruler
  • Kid Scissors
  • Erasers
  • Calculator

Over the last couple of years since we have made the Homework Station, we haven't needed anything else, but my daughter is in the early years of elementary school. If your kids are older you might want to consider a protractor, a more advanced calculator, a dictionary and thesaurus.

We added a little glitter to this year's homework station, because let's face it, my girls love glitter. I cut our words out of Glitter Vinyl using a Cricut, but stickers would work fantastic too.

Besides our Portable Homework Station, our After School Routine has made the biggest difference in helping make sure homework gets done. I made a sign with our routine on it and hung it up in a prominent place in our home. It helps my daughter know exactly what is expected every day after school and leads to way less frustration and meltdowns. You can download it here.

Our list includes:

  • Put Away Coat and Shoes
  • Empty Backpack and Give Parents Papers
  • Have a Snack (we love LALA® Yogurt Smoothies as a snack)
  • Homework
  • Play
  • Dinner
  • 15 Min of Reading
  • Pack Backpack
  • Lay Out Clothes
  • Take a Bath
  • Brush Teeth
  • Tidy Room
  • Go to Sleep

 Having the routine set in place helps my daughter know what is going to happen next. It makes our days smoother and sets us up for a good day the next day. Not every day goes like this, we have days with soccer practice and piano lessons, but even on those days we try hard to stick to our schedule. Some things just happen on the go instead of at home, like our after school snack.

When I have to take my daughter straight to soccer practice from school, I usually throw a LALA® Yogurt Smoothie in my bag to give to her. They are made with real fruit and have 5g of protein, just what a kid needs in the middle of a busy day. My daughter loves drinking a smoothie and munching on a handful of nuts for a protein combo and I love that the smoothies have a reusable lid so when she is done with her snack, I don't have to worry about it spilling all over my car. My older daughter loves the Wild Strawberry flavor and my younger daughter loves the Pecan Cereal variety.  I pick up my LALA® Yogurt Smoothies at Walmart because they have the biggest selection of flavors.

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The combination of a homework station, a established after school routine and good after school snacks has made homework go from nightmare to normal. I might still not be looking forward to homework, but at least I know that it will get done without tears.

What helps your school days run smoother? 
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Masshole Mommy said...

That is a good idea, but my kids don't need any of those things for homework. I set aside a small basket with pencils & a ruler for them :)

Taylor Mobley said...

Growing up my mom always had a routine for us too. Now that I'm married, I will have a routine for my kids one day too!

Karen Morse said...

Homework stations are such a smart idea! Really keeps things organized and structured, which can help for successful work!

Ashley said...

Great idea. I love little carry-alls for this kind of stuff. Luckily we don't have homework yet, but we do have lots of art supplies to corral. Thanks!

Amber N said...

This is such a great idea. There is no excuse now why their homework cannot be completed!

Rebecca Bryant said...

This is pretty cool. I like this idea a lot it will be handy for all the after school kids hanging out here.

Wow Di said...

Growing up we always had a routine. I'd do my homework, Mom made dinner, then if I was done with homework we'd have a small dessert. But if no homework was finished no dessert till it was done!

Sarah B said...

I think this is such a great idea! We don't have homework, yet, but I'll keep this in mind for the future! I love the routine printable. I think I'll print one out for my daughter, since she *understands* the bedtime routine, but I think seeing it written out will help her! #client

Cynthia said...

This is a great idea to have a snack container. Gives the kids a sense of control too. Everyone should have a good work space, including our kids!

Amanda Steelman said...

This is one of the best ideas I have seen! My kids are constantly saying "MOM, where's the glue, where's the pencils, where's the paper?" And of course they have never even looked for it! They are both older now and don't require as many supplies but I am still going to do this and I am going to put HUGE letters on the front!

Kara Hyvarinen said...

These are great tips. The school year can be so crazy without the need to hunt down a pencil to get homework done!

Roxanne Ferber said...

Love this! I'm going to keep in mind for the school year. We are first time school kids so I won't know what we need for homework assignments until we get there! I love the routine printable to- very helpful to keep kids on track!

JennaK said...

I just pinned this idea to my website under my kids and moms board - I absolutely love the idea! It's really great that you allow your children to do their homework in the comfort of their preferred environment. This is definitely how I like to work.

Renée @ The Good Hearted Woman said...

This is such a great idea! Both as a mom and a teacher, I can appreciate the stress and frustration homework can create. Being organized and having all the materials you needs can help so much.

Sona Sethi said...

This is so cool. Very innovative idea to keep the creative juices flowing. :)

Hil'Lesha O'Nan said...

I love the idea of creating a homework station. I'll have to try this since I believe this will help simplify things.

Christina Shoemaker said...

This is a great idea for young kids! My son is starting kindergarten so we're definitely about to enter the homework phase!

Teresa Laura said...

This is such a great idea. So creative! I am definitely sharing this with my aunt to do for my younger cousins.