There remains a growing desire to reform Secondary education in the UK, after the chairman of the Education Select Committee Robert Halfon suggested that both GCSEs and A-Levels should be scrapped in the near-future.
For now, GCSEs remain a key staple of Secondary education in the UK, with hundreds and thousands of students nationwide preparing for their exams. It was only 12 months ago that my own teenager was in the midst of revision for his GCSEs, and preparing to sit 24 exams during May and June.
Given the importance of a good education, and the fact that teenagers can experience high levels of stress as they revise for their exams, you need to create a functional study area for your teens. I know from experience what a difference this can make, so here are a few ways in which you can help them to realise their academic potential:
- Take care of the basics – Give them an uncluttered desk and a comfortable chair
According to studies, maintaining a clean and organised living space is extremely good for you (both psychically and psychologically).
One piece of research revealed that people with clean houses live a healthier lifestyle than those with cluttered or disorganised homes, while a messy living space is also linked with mental issues like depression and fatigue.
You should definitely keep this principle in mind when creating a study space for your child, as you ensure that they have a large, uncluttered desk to work on at all times.
From a physical perspective, it’s also important that you give them a comfortable and adjustable chair, which optimises their sense of comfort and subsequent levels of concentration.
- Make sure that the light level is good for revision
It’s also important that your teen’s study space boasts the right level of light, as otherwise they’ll risk straining their eyes or experiencing an unhelpful glare.
One way to achieve this is to optimise the levels of natural light that illuminate the space during the day, as this makes it easier to study, while helping you to reduce your daily energy consumption.
You should also fit blinds that can be adjusted to suit the conditions, with suppliers like Direct Blinds offering a range of products depending on your needs.
If your teen is going to be studying at night and after school, you might also want to consider fitting a dimmer switch, to help find the optimal level of light at any given time.
- Make the space practical and appealing to kids
On a final note, it’s important that any potential study area is appealing to them, as this ensures that they want to spend their time here, and focus on their revision subjects.
Kitting the space out with carefully selected colours and soft furnishings can help you to achieve this, with shades like sky blue known to be calming and capable of inhibiting your appetite (and therefore minimising distractions).
New rugs and plants can also make the space more appealing, while the latter is known to increase academic performance by between 10% and 15% (particularly in relation to spelling and mathematics).
Remember to make the space as functional as possible too, by creating an ergonomic design that allows your teens to keep all of their learning materials nearby at all times.