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local area homework ideas

Globingo is a good warm up activity for finding out who knows what about the local area. You can prepare the game cards yourself or you can invite your students to prepare their own class set. If you create two sets, is your set different from the students’? Does this reflect a different way of perceiving place?

How to play:

  • Find a different person to answer each question
  • Get them to fill in the answer/sign the box
  • Get as many answers as you can in a set time

Start off with a dozen different cards – see three examples below:

local area homework ideas

Places Bingo

Using a word list and local images, you can create a bingo activity to suit any area (or topic) to encourage observation and reinforce place specific words.

  • Open the Sheffield PowerPoint Presentation
  • Students should choose ten of the words on slide six and enter them in the blank spaces on a bingo card
  • Click through the photos of Sheffield and every time the students identify one of the words on their card they should cross it off
  • The first with a full house is the winner

Sheffield places bingo

Blank bingo cards, draw a map of your place.

The main purpose of this exercise was to identify what the term ‘local’ means and find out what students think of as their places.

Students were asked to draw a map of ‘their place’. Most students had several places depending on activities, times of the day, who they were with and what their purpose was.

For some ‘local’ was their bedroom as this was the place of most social interaction for them.

This activity led to many questions and discussions including:

  • Do we need to consider what is local?
  • Is local an outdated scale?
  • What is a map?
  • Does this exercise need a purpose?
  • Does the map need a purpose?
  • Do we use electronic maps?
  • How might this determine what the students produce?
  • Will the map tell a story or record a place?
  • What are maps for?

See The Map Book by Peter Barber for some interesting ideas on maps.

Maps and aerial photographs

local area homework ideas

In this activity students were given a single aerial photograph tile to describe and attempt to recognise features and places.

  • What features can they see/describe?
  • Can they locate the small image on a larger aerial photograph?
  • Can they then locate the image on an OS map?
  • What does the image show that the map doesn’t?
  • What does the map show that the image doesn’t?
  • What can’t they know from either resource?
  • What can they see from the wider map and aerial photograph?
  • Which areas do they go to?
  • Which do they avoid?
  • What are their impressions of other places?
  • Can they locate the images used in the last exercise on the map?

What you need

Large aerial photographs, maps and small tiles.

These resources can be created by purchasing maps and photographs to cut into tiles or by downloading material from a range of websites. The following links provide some excellent ways to explore local areas using digital maps:

  • Digimap for Schools (further information available from the Ordnance Survey )
  • Where’s the path?
  • Open Street Map
  • Scribble Maps
  • Mapping for Change

Maps can be purchased from site such as

  • Cassini Maps

Frameworks for talking about place

The PowerPoint presentation below uses a range of different frames to support an analysis of place. It encourages a deeper examination of images, a vocabulary for talking about place and a framework for understanding concepts such as place and space.

‘In the picture’ – frameworks for talking about place

Investigating my patch.

local area homework ideas

In this exercise students use their ICT and map skills to explore a 16 sq km ‘patch’ of land somewhere in Great Britain. Once they have found out about their patch, they present their findings on an A3 sheet in the form of maps, drawings and photos.

Digimap for Schools is no longer free so your school will need to subscribe to this service.

Using ICT to investigate my patch

Peer assessment and speed dating.

This activity is designed to sharpen oral presentations and support self assessment. It is intended to engage students with the quality of their work and help them reflect on how to improve it.

It can be set up as a one minute paired activity where students take turns to share their answer to a GCSE question with a partner. One student presents while the other listens and recommends a minimum of one extra word from word bank (and its context) to enhance the answer. The activity is then reversed and repeated.

Peer assessment and speed dating – full instructions

Doorstep geography.

Doorstep geography is an idea developed by the GA’s Secondary Phase Committee . The committee has developed PowerPoint presentations and ideas to help teachers with ideas about how to use the local area in or near the school grounds.

Doorstep geography activity ideas

Doorstep geography – manchester.

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local area homework ideas

Creative Homework Ideas For Your Students

Setting appropriate homework tasks is a big part of your teaching role. Setting homework is an opportunity to ensure that your students have absorbed the lesson and can apply what they've learnt to individual study. Homework allows students to reflect on your teachings and broaden their understanding of a particular subject or topic.

However, motivating your class to view homework this way might be something of a challenge! Most young people find settling down to complete homework outside of school hours challenging. If the task feels overwhelming or difficult or seems monotonous, they might just go through the motions of getting it done rather than giving it their full energy and attention and completing it the best they can.

So how can you ensure students' love of learning continues outside the classroom and that they not only give their all to completing homework but actually enjoy it too?

By getting creative with the work you set and thinking about how you can engage and motivate students to complete their homework, you will undoubtedly see better results.

Here are some excellent homework ideas to help encourage creative, student-led learning.

Exciting, engaging homework ideas to keep your students paying attention

Write their own lesson plan.

If you want to give your students a chance to step into your shoes for the day, why don't you ask them to create their own lesson plan around a topic they've learnt about or are about to learn? This will give them a chance to showcase their knowledge, do research and think creatively. You'll also learn more about how your students like to work and what would make a good lesson from their perspective, which could help inform how you shape your lessons in the future.

Write a speech or story from a different perspective

If your students are learning about a famous historical figure or studying a classic text, why not get them to think about different perspectives? You could ask them to embody someone influential from a particular period or a character from a play or story and write a speech or story from that person's point of view.

Create a board game

Gamification is always a fun idea to try to inject energy into the classroom, and getting your students to create their very own board game is a fantastic way to keep things fun while also getting them engaged in their learning. Games could centre around a particular topic; they could be quiz-based, matching games, or number games - let them get as creative as they like. You can then have fun in class playing the best ones too.

Go on a treasure hunt

As a fun homework task that will get your students out and about, ask them to go on a treasure or scavenger hunt, finding certain things that are related to your topic. For younger children, this could be as simple as collecting leaves, flowers, or twigs they might find in their local park, or particular shapes or colours, but older children can benefit from this kind of task too by setting more complicated challenges.

Create a collage

Creating collages can be a fun and interesting way for students to demonstrate their learning, improve their research skills and use their creativity and imagination and can be based on a variety of different topics so they work well across lots of subjects. Encourage them to stick cutouts, fabrics, tickets, photographs, and any other relevant materials to make up their collages, and then they can take turns presenting these in class.

Film a video

If your students are older and have mobile phones, you could set a video-making task for them to do at home. This could involve interviewing friends and relatives about a topic or filming themselves talking about a specific subject, or answering a particular question. Students could share their videos in class and will love being able to use their phones in school for once!

Create a crossword

Get your students to think creatively about questions and answers by asking them to create their very own crossword puzzle, using the material you've taught them in class as a basis. You can ask them to bring all their crossword puzzles into class and then swap them with each other to see if other students can fit the answers in correctly.

Find fun facts

Almost every subject has weird and wonderful facts surrounding it. Did you know, for example, that the word 'hundred' derives from an old Norse term 'hundrath,' which actually means 120?! Or that water can both boil and freeze simultaneously? Encourage your students to find the most obscure or interesting facts about the subjects you are teaching them, and then you can all share your findings in class.

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- See more at:

local area homework ideas

local area homework ideas

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local area homework ideas

My Local Area Homework Project

Lesson: Geography

Class: Class 1 Year: 2019 - 2020

Class 1 have been really busy with their homework projects this term. They have been finding out all about their local area and where they live.

local area homework ideas

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local area homework ideas

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local area homework ideas

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Our Local Area Geography KS1

Our Local Area Geography KS1

Subject: Geography

Age range: 5-7

Resource type: Worksheet/Activity

 applefortheteacher shop

Last updated

22 February 2019

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local area homework ideas

This is a great activity pack to cover the Geography topic of ‘Our Local Area’ in KS1. There is an animated, interactive powerpoint created in a very child friendly format, to engage and inspire learning. Also included are I spy sheets, to encourage young children to look carefully around their local area to see what they can find. A checklist and some drawing activities and address writing. A lovely bundle of teaching resources to put the love back in learning.

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Published: Aug 5, 2021 · Modified: Aug 28, 2021 by Rachel

30+ Homework Station Ideas for Kids and Teens

Ready to make your family’s after-school or home school routine a bit less stressful? An organized homework station is the answer! I’ve included easy tips for small spaces and multiple kids so everyone can have a quiet, supervised space to study.

Collage of multiple homework station ideas for kids.

Table of Contents

It’s back to school time again and along with that comes a flood of emotion. While its sad to see our babies growing up, my inner organizing dork gets a boost of excitement. Create a cheerful space with these homework station ideas to inspire learning, even if you’re short on space!

A homework station is an inviting area that is dedicated to learning, homework, and informal learning like arts and crafts project. Although the kitchen table will suffice for a quick review or a worksheet, we’ve found it’s nice to have a homework zone where school supplies, books, and school calendars can have a dedicated place of their own. This cuts back on clutter and distractions.

I was inspired to write this post because of what I’ve learned from our frustrations with my son’s severe ADHD. At first, homework hour was a stressful experience full of tears (mine), yelling and every possible distraction under the sun. No exaggeration – 20 minutes of homework regularly took almost 2 hours. The material was never the issue. Home school moms, you have my admiration!

That’s where a dedicated space and equitable ground rules saved the day (and my sanity!)

How To Setup a Homework Station

I’ve learned a lot over several incarnations of our homework space. Creating a basic homework station area is simple and effective with these tips below:

  • Choose a quiet area. The biggest chance of success is to limit distractions. Preferably with a handy outlet for a laptop, or charging accessories like headphones. For my son, I find that headphones with music (on loop) works wonders.
  • Stock it with necessities. My son is the king of wasting time looking for misplaced items. Before official homework time, I ask if he has everything he needs to minimize the chances of him getting up from the desk.
  • Set a routine. Same time + Same space = Success. I personally give my son a short break after school before we get down to business.
  • Keep ’em close. While we must balance distractions, young children especially need supervision and usually help.
  • Minimize your own distractions. When my son was in elementary school, I couldn’t continue working from home during homework time. It wasn’t fair to ask him to stay focused, when I myself wasn’t focused on his questions. So I placed a tiny desk in our kitchen. That way I had both eyes on him while I washed dishes or prepped dinner. I was available, yet still productive.

Homework Station Supplies

Below is a handy list of supplies that are sometimes useful.

  • Pens and pencils
  • Loose leaf paper for scratch paper or notes
  • A timer or clock
  • A folder with pockets
  • 1 box of color pencils or crayons
  • Computer and charger
  • A planner (checklists are the lifeblood of this house!)
  • Craft supplies as necessary – glue sticks and scissors are examples
  • A comfy chair

dotted line page divider.

Homework Station Setup Ideas

Finding the right space is often the most challenging part! I’ve included some inspirational ideas below to get focused. You don’t need to have an elaborate space, but these are great jumping off points to inspire your creativity.

Nooks & Crannies

White desk area in an alcove.

While most of us don’t have room for a dedicated office, there’s usually space to spare like under the staircase, an unused closet, or an awkward alcove . These centrally located spaces are often quiet and can be quite magical.

A small closet can be transformed into a useful desk space. Source: This Old House.

Children's desk in a closet with two chairs.

The unused space underneath a staircase like this desk is also perfect for using as a small homework station. This design utilizes fun lines and strokes to make it visually interesting.

Homework Stations that Foster Creativity

I honestly believe that adding a little creativity to the space fosters the desire to learn and leads to great ideas. Classrooms are full of stimulating decorations for a reason.

Here’s a few creative concepts to enhance your learning environment:

Homework station with colorful hanging buckets with coloring supplies with white desk against black background with inspirational quotes.

Inspirational quotes on a paintable chalkboard from Dawn Nicole add a touch of whimsy and keep students motivated during tough assignments.

DIY wooden planks attached to white wall for hanging pictures at homework station in office.

A simple wall Children’s art display like the desk above allows kids to hang their accomplishments and past artwork.

Colorful kids room with desk area for homework and built in shelves.

Add a splash of color or maybe some wall flash cards.

While these beautiful spaces are awesome, sometimes we just need a simple option like this portable homework station .

Portable homework station with school supplies inside.

More portable homework station ideas :

  • Use a bath caddy to hold supplies so you can grab and go.
  • A tiny desk and rolling cart makes it easy to move supplies where you need them, when you need them.
  • I love my car seat organizer for homework on-the-go. It’s a lifesaver when I have to run errands.
  • This fold away desk vault in a box is brilliant!

Room for Two (or more)

If you have more than one child, figure out how they learn best. Do they prefer to  study  together? Try setting up the desk so it can accommodate everyone. A collaborative study area is less isolating.

Office for 3 kids with photos above the desks.

I’m a big fan of this option . Everyone has dedicated space and no one is encroaching on the other’s turf.

Double sided desk with two chairs and a bookshelf between them.

This desk utilizes a stacking bookshelf to create two separate work areas and provide ample storage for each user. To save space, you could also have the desks face each other with the bookshelf between them.

White playroom area with plenty of storage and desk space for completing homework with cute world map mural on wall.

This study zone melds learning and fun. It’s an especially fantastic space for large families. The multi-functional area can accommodate everything from homework, to art projects, and amazing Lego builds.

Colorful craft room with white walls and white cabinets with craft supplies on the wall and a pegboard.

During my own work hours, I share a space with my son. Our craft room makeover project had to include key elements like tandem workspaces, ample organization elements and creative ways to display our greatest hits!

PRO TIP: Peg Boards are excellent additions to any Homework Station. They allow you to customize your storage and wall display without limits. Here’s how we built a DIY pegboard organizer.

Desk area with large pegboard for craft and office supplies.

Space Saving Solutions

House a homework nook in even the tiniest space. These space saving desks are brilliant!

Wall Mounted Desk

Wall Mounted Folding desk laid out with supplies on it.

Ladder Shelf

Leaning ladder desk next to a bed in a dorm room.

Wall mounted

Wall mounted secretary desk that saves space.

Space Saving Shelf Desk

Ladder style space saving desk mounted on the wall.

Do you have a dedicated studying area in your home? What’s your top tip for handling the daily homework assignments?

More Ideas You May Enjoy

Colorful craft room with white walls and white cabinets with craft supplies on the wall and a pegboard.

PS I love seeing your creations! Be sure to take a photo and tag  #cravingcreative  on Instagram ! You can also  stay in touch with me through following me on  Instagram ,  Pinterest , and subscribing to the newsletter!

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August 31, 2015 at 11:36 pm

Meredith @ The Palette Muse says

August 31, 2015 at 10:42 pm

  • BookWidgets Teacher Blog

local area homework ideas

20+ creative alternative homework ideas for teachers

local area homework ideas

When giving homework, it must always be based on learning goals your students have to reach, just like in your lessons. But it’s sad to see that lots of teachers are using homework as extra lesson time. Of course, as a teacher, you’re on a clock. But that doesn’t mean your students have to suffer from it and keep working on those boring textbooks and worksheets at home.

Consider goals like attitudes, real-life experiences, and practice, physical exercise, social encounters, creative solutions, and philanthropy as crucial as your lesson goals. These are things students don’t just pick up in your classroom. These are things they pick up in life.

In this blog post, I’ll give you some innovative homework ideas that will engage your students more. These alternatives to traditional homework will thereby also teach your students new things that can’t be taught in the classroom. You will find a variety of homework ideas: online and offline.

I will mention homework alternatives for primary school and high school. Some of these ideas can be changed a little bit, so they are the perfect fit for the right audience.

20 Creative homework ideas

You can divide homework tasks into the following themes or categories:

  • Crafts & arts
  • Outdoor activities & outings
  • Games and activities
  • Physical activities
  • Digital or computer activities
  • Philanthropy & social work
💡 Good to know : all the ready-to-use homework activities are created with BookWidgets . You can easily create activities like these yourself or duplicate an activity below for free, edit it if needed, and share it with your students. You can do so in the examples separately, or you can find all the homework examples in the BookWidgets Blog group folder .

Crafts and arts homework

1. prepare a dish from a recipe book.

local area homework ideas

2. Make a board game

local area homework ideas

3. Create a birdhouse

local area homework ideas

4. Transform a fictional book character into a hand puppet

local area homework ideas

Outdoor homework activities and outings

5. coupon game.

local area homework ideas

Students can also go grocery shopping with their parents. Here, they have to read the ingredients of the products and help their parents choose the healthiest products for the best prices, figure out the best deal between the sizes of items, …

6. Visit the zoo

local area homework ideas

7. Visit the local dumping ground or container park

local area homework ideas

8. Build a tree house

local area homework ideas

Games and activities as homework

9. bookwidgets games.

local area homework ideas

10. Minecraft

local area homework ideas

11. Play Cards

local area homework ideas

12. Play Zoo Tycoon or Rollercoaster Tycoon

local area homework ideas

Physical homework activities

13. rope skipping.

local area homework ideas

Many rope-skipping songs let your students do different tricks while rope-skipping. This is an excellent opportunity for homework as well. Ask your students to transform a rope skipping song into a song with lesson content. Let them count or spell or even sum up the different states or capitals. To engage their lifestyles even harder, you can additionally give them the assignment to create a TikTok in which they are jumping and singing.

Click here to see how you can get Tiktok more involved in the classroom.

14. Walking quest

local area homework ideas

If there aren’t any walking quests in the neighborhood, you could ask your students to create a walking quest like this for their fellow students. What a fun day it will be!

15. Obstacle Quiz

local area homework ideas

In order for students to answer the questions, they have to run and pass a challenging parkour. This is a fun homework exercise, and in the end, it’s a great lesson starter or lesson end.

16. Swimming games

local area homework ideas

After the activity, they can fill out an Exit Slip:

Swimming games

Digital or computer homework activities

17. create a picture album.

local area homework ideas

This teaches them to handle the online software, add pictures and write without spelling mistakes. And of course, creating memories is so much fun!

18. Video job application

local area homework ideas

19. Your life in 10 minutes - video

local area homework ideas

20. Email pen-pals

local area homework ideas

Is it still too complicated? Read the messages from your students, before they send them, and provide them with some feedback.

Email pen-pals

Philanthropy and social homework

21. grow a community garden.

local area homework ideas

22. Help in a retirement home

local area homework ideas

23. Help at a homeless shelter

local area homework ideas

24. Collect litter

local area homework ideas

Here’s another homework tip: Don’t call homework “homework”. Call it a challenge. Homework has become a negative word for students, and I bet they start rolling their eyes as you even mention the word.

Still looking for more inspiration? Check out the blog on short films and lesson activities that spice up your Google Classroom . Tip: even if you don’t use Google Classroom, there is a lot of inspiration back here.

Above you have read single assignments. But, you also have the option to involve your homework in a project. Find out more here .

So, as I mentioned earlier, there are many fun alternatives to traditional homework. Now it’s up to you to apply this in the classroom as well. In this folder , you will find all the examples you have come across.

Which idea do you or perhaps your students like the most? Let us know on Twitter . Of course, there are many more alternatives. If you have other ideas, you are always welcome to share it with other teachers in our Facebook group .

One more thing: don’t forget to say hi👋 on LikedIn .

20+ creative homework alternatives

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BookWidgets enables teachers to create fun and interactive lessons for tablets, smartphones, and computers.

local area homework ideas

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FREE daily maths challenges

A new KS2 maths challenge every day. Perfect as lesson starters - no prep required!

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13 Fun Homework Ideas: The Best Ways To Make Homework Fun For Kids Quickly & Easily

Ellie Williams

Figuring out how to make homework fun can be a tricky task for parents.

Does it feel like you’re constantly nagging your kids to do their homework? If your answer is yes then worry not as we’ve all been there! It’s natural for parents to want their children to progress and do well in school, but after an entire day of paper, pencils, and books many youngsters will resist getting on with their homework – and that’s putting it mildly!

Top Tips To Make Homework Fun:

  • Work together
  • Use rewards and incentives
  • Sort them a snack
  • Make it visual
  • Try different learning apps
  • Set up a homework play date
  • Turn it into a game
  • Let them play teacher
  • Use a timer
  • Create a special homework space
  • Remember to be positive
  • Get help if you need i t

Thankfully, there are ways of making homework less boring and that little bit more fun for your child. Whether they need to practice spellings, learn their times tables or revise for an important exam, our top fun homework ideas will help you to magically take the ‘work’ out of homework.

KS2 Maths Games and Activities Pack

KS2 Maths Games and Activities Pack

A FREE downloadable games and activity pack, including 20 home learning maths activities for KS2 children to complete on their own or with a partner.

1. Work together

Fun Homework Ideas

Adults often work best in the company of others, and the same can be said of kids, so why not sit with your child while they’re studying and get on with some of your own work or life admin?

Whether you’re returning emails, doing your online banking or organising the next primary school PTA fundraiser, creating a shared workspace and modelling focused work is a great way to spend quality time together while they complete their homework. Win-win!

Quick win : Whilst your child is tackling their fractions homework, you could sit down with them and take a look through your finances or even test yourself on the work that your child will be doing in their SATs .

2. Use rewards and incentives

Rewards and incentives are great when it comes to getting your children to follow your household rules and routines, and homework is no different. Things like stickers or the promise of time on their iPad or games console for slightly older children can all work wonders in getting them to do their homework without a battle.

Quick win: For every few questions they answer they could get a minute of screen time!

3. Sort them a snack

Fun Homework ideas

Let’s face it: A hungry child is an unfocused, unmotivated and unhappy child.

Most children come out of school ravenous, so let them nibble on a nutritious after-school snack while they get on with homework; things like popcorn, apple slices, grapes, flapjacks, or crackers and cheese are all great snack options.

If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, Netmums has a list of healthy after-school snack ideas and recipes to try.

Quick win: One of the best brain foods for kids is a nice and crispy apple! So when your child is craving something sweet just cut up an apple and let them munch away.

4. Make it visual

Help to eliminate the late night ‘Oh, I forgot to do that’, and create a weekly homework chart so your child can see what they have to do each day and check off each homework ‘To Do’ as it’s been completed.

Again, Pinterest has some great free printables to help keep kids organised. Get them involved by letting them colour it, or decorate it with their favourite stickers, and pin it up somewhere at their height, where they will see it easily every day as a reminder. Some exciting new stationery and colourful pens might help too.

Quick win: An easy way to make homework fun is to grab a piece of paper and get your child to draw out and decorate a ‘homework chart’ consisting of 5 days. Stick it on the fridge and add a sticker to each day after they’ve done their homework, when they’ve collected 5 stickers they get a treat!

5. Try different learning apps

Make Homework Fun

If your child prefers to be online, there are some great online apps around that children will have fun using, yet encourage learning too. Here are our favourite free maths websites for example. Speak to your child’s teacher too and see which apps the children use in school so you can support what they’re doing at home.

Quick win: One of our favourite apps that makes homework fun is Times Tables Rockstars!

6. Set up a homework play date

Holding a homework playdate where your child can invite one of their best school buddies over to do homework together can be a great way for them to learn and make sure the work gets done, especially slightly older primary children.

Plus, it’s likely that their parents will be delighted!

Younger children may need a bit more support and guidance but can still gain a lot from the experience of learning together with a friend – think of this as a mini-educational play date for them – with a special tea afterwards of course!

Quick win: Let your child and their friend play for a while, and then get them to work through their homework with the incentive of a yummy ‘tea party’ when they’ve completed all of their homework.

7. Go outside

Fun Homework Ideas

If the weather allows, create a comfortable outside study space and allow your child to do their homework outdoors.

The fresh air can help kids with their concentration if they’ve been stuck in a classroom all day, and studies also show that being outside, closer to nature, can increase productivity. The reward of a quick game of Frisbee or a kick-around of a football between tasks will help them stay motivated too.

Quick win: Check out this fun outdoor maths activity for some inspiration of ways you can make homework fun. 

8. Turn it into a game

Who said home learning had to be boring? If children enjoy what they’re learning, they’re more likely to remember what they’re being taught, so turn their learning into a fun game. Using sweets like Smarties to help with maths and number work can turn the experience from a chore into a treat. If they get the right answer, they get to eat some!

Another trick that you can use when your child is learning spellings is to write them in foam or in magnetic letters. It sounds simple, but  we can guarantee that it will make homework a lot more fun for your child.

These maths games for kids and times tables games are a great place to start.

Quick win: If you’re looking for some fun homework ideas then check out this simple multiplication activity you can do at home, it’ll even get in one of your child’s five a day!

9. Let them play teacher

Make another fun homework game by creating your own mini-classroom and letting your child step into the role of teacher.

Have your child explain a concept to you as a teacher, as you, or their sibling, plays the role of the student. This game works particularly well with subjects that require theory, like Science for example, as it will improve their understanding of the concept and build logic and reasoning skills.

Quick win: Make homework fun by getting your child to choose their favourite teddys and toys and setting them up in their own mini classroom. Start off with registration, ‘mummy’ ‘present’, ‘mr teddy’ ‘here’ etc. You’ll soon notice that your child is growing in confidence regardless of the topic as children love playing teacher!

Ideas to make homework fun

10. Use a timer

Some children may have difficulty working for prolonged periods of time without a break, so using a timer can be great for getting them to complete homework without the whining. For example, if your child is given 20 maths problems for homework, you can say “Complete the first 10 questions then we’ll take a 5-minute break, then complete the next 10 questions”.

Many children will need a mental break and will work more effectively when given the opportunity to take one. At the end of the task, they get to pick an activity of their choice. If your child gets easily distracted, a timer game can work well to keep them focused on the task in hand.

Quick win: Put the timer on your phone so that your child can see the countdown whilst they’re working.

11. Create a special homework space

A special study space can make homework more fun and help motivate your child to get it done! Choose a space in your house that’s least likely to distract your child, and create a simple, organised, and kid-friendly homework HQ.

You could hang up some of their artwork above the desk, and have all their school essentials nearby so everything is close to hand.

Quick win: Make sure that they aren’t surrounded by things that will distract them. Televisions and iPads are a no go at homework time!

12. Remember to be positive

Remember to always be upbeat and positive about school and the importance of their homework. Give your child lots of praise and encouragement about how well they’re doing to help them stay motivated and on track.

Quick win: After every homework session spend five minutes talking through what your child has accomplished. If you’re running out of activities to do, have a look at our list of home learning packs – all free to download.

13. Get help if you need it

Homework can be frustrating if your child doesn’t understand the material or gets bored easily. If your child is struggling, get them some expert help!

A Third Space Learning online tutoring lesson exploring the value of digits in numbers up to 10,000,000.

Quick win:  Third Space Learning has plenty of advice on learning maths for kids and parents but if you need more support, our primary school maths tutors are easy to organise and very affordable.


Every week Third Space Learning’s maths specialist tutors support thousands of students across hundreds of schools with weekly one to one tuition designed to plug gaps and boost progress.

Since 2013 these personalised one to one lessons have helped over 150,000 primary and secondary students become more confident, able mathematicians.

Learn how pupils make accelerated progress or request a personalised quote for your school to speak to us about your school’s needs and how we can help.

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FREE Ultimate Maths Vocabulary List [KS1 & KS2]

An A-Z of key maths concepts to help you and your pupils get started creating your own dictionary of terms.

Use as a prompt to get pupils started with new concepts, or hand it out in full and encourage use throughout the year.

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Investigating our Local Area

Encourage your class to take a closer look at their local area as they explore different features of the community.


Start by using maps to spot familiar places and give directions to and from local points of interest then teach children the difference between physical and human features. Putting their geographical skills to the test, your class will have the chance to examine services in the local area and create a survey of jobs and travel. Finally, consolidate their knowledge by asking them to evaluate their local area and provide information for visitors and tourists.

These investigative lessons contain everything you will need to teach this scheme of work, including lesson plans, slides, activity ideas and differentiated worksheets.

You  might be interested in our ' My Diverse Community ' PSHE scheme for Year 3, which teaches children how to work together to care for the people and places in their communities.


This first lesson aims to teach children where exactly in the world they are by identifying their continent, country, region and county. Your class will then have the chance to use a map and compass points to give directions to and from local places of interest.

What's included:

  • Lesson plan
  • Activity ideas
  • Challenge cards
  • Question cards


Encourage your class to think carefully about where they live and what it is like by identifying and describing the difference between human and physical geographical features. They will consider the difference between urban and rural areas, and think about whether the surrounding area is residential, commercial, agricultural or industrial. They can also go and explore the local area for themselves to see which human and physical features they can spot.

  • Differentiated trip sheets


Get your thinking caps on as your class describe what services are available to them in their local area, such as shops, libraries, garages, police stations and more. Then challenge them to find them on a map of their local area and presenting what they have found out. There is also the chance for them to design their own town, including the services they think are necessary.

  • Differentiated worksheets
  • Picture cards


Before this lesson, your children will need to complete a questionnaire which asks adults in their local community how they get to work. Children can then analyse the data they have gathered to describe ways in which adults travel to work and what this tells them about their local area.

  • Job questionnaire


This lesson gives your class the chance to reflect on everything they have found out about their local area and to consolidate what they have learnt into information for visitors to the area. They will consider the positives and negatives of their local area, and describe its human and physical features, as well as finding out some further information about where they live to help inform others who might visit.

Free Overview (Medium-Term Plan)

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Curriculum Objectives covered

  • KS2 - name and locate counties and cities of the United Kingdom, geographical regions and their identifying human and physical characteristics, key topographical features (including hills, mountains, coasts and rivers), and land-use patterns; and understand how some of these aspects have changed over time
  • KS2 - describe and understand key aspects of human geography, including: types of settlement and land use, economic activity including trade links, and the distribution of natural resources including energy, food, minerals and water
  • KS2 - use the eight points of a compass, four and six-figure grid references, symbols and key (including the use of Ordnance Survey maps) to build their knowledge of the United Kingdom and the wider world
  • KS2 - use fieldwork to observe, measure, record and present the human and physical features in the local area using a range of methods, including sketch maps, plans and graphs, and digital technologies

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15 Tips for Creating the Most Productive Homework Space

Creating a space in your living area dedicated to homework is a smart move. It creates space dedicated to nothing but homework, and accomplishing your goals. Here’s how to make the most of your space so you can get the best out of time spent doing homework.

The lighting

Keep it neat, put away unnecessary electronics, organize cords, provide ample supplies, print out reference materials, make it inspirational, use a whiteboard, use felt tiles, do your own work together, stick to a schedule, reward hard work.

Choose a room or area that’s in a quiet area. For instance, a desk next to the living room sofa might not be ideal for productivity. Instead, place work areas in vacant rooms or partitioned areas. If you have a large common room you’d like to divide or if you have an open floor plan, consider a room divider like this handmade, woven rattan from Rose Home Fashion that doubles as a shelf.

A productive homework station starts with a designated work space. Promote good posture and concentration with this adjustable from Mount-It!, which also tilts out for more versatile use. The desk starts at 21.3 inches and adjusts up to 30 inches. For older schoolchildren, opt for a desk with enough work space and compartments for desk supplies. Try floating desk for a more modern feel and extra shelf space. It measures 19.8 inches by 42.2 inches by 39.5 inches.

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Comfort is crucial, especially for older children (and adults) who need longer working times. An ergonomic swivel chair with an adjustable height is ideal. This from XISHE has an adjustable seat height of 16.5 inches to 20.4 inches. For , consider this chair from VIVO, which has an adjustable seat height of 12.6 inches to 17.3 inches.

A well-lit space is necessary for optimal study performance. Besides installing a ceiling lamp and/or floor lamp, place a reading lamp on each child’s desk. Adjustable that clip onto desks are ideal so you/your child can control the light angle. This LED lamp offers three different color temperatures so your child can choose what helps them work best.

To encourage organization skills, clear your piles, suggests Life Hack . Mesh trays with multiple trays and compartments for smaller supplies like pencils are a popular choice. measures 13 inches in length, 9 inches in width, and 15.5 inches in height. It’s ideal for sorting paperwork for multiple classes. For irregular-sized supplies like arts and crafts material, consider a rolling cart with up to 12 drawers. A large size for this one measures 11 inches wide, 5.5 inches high, and 15 inches deep. For further guidance, take a look at our list of easy desk organization ideas .

If your child does not need a tablet or any other electronics for homework, place the gadget in a designated electronics box. For instance, KWLET’s felt storage box comes in a large size measuring 14.8 inches by 10 inches by 5.1 inches, which is compatible with small tablets and phones. Making your homework station electronic-free removes unnecessary distractions.

If your child does need a tablet or laptop to complete homework, a cord organizer like this rubber one from Toysdone is essential. It keeps cords and cables from tangling and has a weighted base to secure it onto the desk.

Other than the school worksheets or books, children often need additional supplies. A basic supplies sheet includes pencils, pens, glue, colored pencils, markers, crayons, tape, staplers, and erasers. Stay organized with a caddy (7 inches by 14.5 inches by 5.75 inches) or an organizer (8.8 inches by 4.5 inches by 4.15 inches). Other materials include colored paper, graphing paper, lined paper, sticky notes, index paper, and folders.

Supplement school work with other material like this handwriting workbook for young children. Also consider multiplication flash cards to help solidify math lessons. These materials not only help your children study, they also serve as educational activities for when they want to take a break from assignments. For high-school age children, consider subject-specific reference sheets like this Chemistry Quick Study guide by Inc. BarCharts. Other helpful materials include SAT prep books , supplemental math flash cards , and maps.

Bright, motivational posters with encouraging words provide color and help cheer your children on when they feel frustrated with an assignment. Try this six-pack of motivational posters measuring 13.75 inches by 19.75 inches — great for lining up on a single wall or spaced out throughout the room.

A simple dry-erase whiteboard like this foldable double-sided one from Yaze Magnet (16 inches by 12 inches) is ideal for engaged visual learning. Guide your child through simple math problems or the alphabet using a dry-erase board or utilize it for spelling out homework reminders. You may also use a wall calendar.

If you want to skip the traditional square corkboard, try these hexagon felt tiles. One pack includes six pieces measuring 5.9 by 7 by 0.6 inches each. They come in various multicolor packs like blue, red, and white, gray and turquoise, turquoise orange and pink, light gray, and dark gray. The unusual shapes can make your study room feel more fun while keeping small notes, homework pages, and reminders visible.

If possible, stay in the room or nearby to provide support. Try to do your own homework whether it be reading an ebook, organizing digital files, or bullet journaling. Making yourself available to help might make children feel more comfortable and boosts household morale.

Allocate a regular block of time for homework. This can be 4 to 6 o’clock in the afternoon with a five-minute break or 6 to 8 o’clock in the evening for older children. The schedule depends on your family’s overall daily routine. It’s also helpful to carve out time during the weekend to complete longer assignments or projects. When you and your child are used to working at a specific time, this helps promote a responsible work ethic and effective time management. Of course, life happens and sometimes we can’t stick to our original plans, but flexibility and adaptability are just as important to develop.

Build good study habits (and better relationships) by acknowledging hard work. You can provide incentives to complete homework from something simple like daily stickers to extra-meaningful rewards like a day trip to the museum.

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The basement is a great spot for a designated laundry room due to its open layout and utility hookups. Often, though, the aesthetics leave a lot to be desired.

Your basement laundry room doesn’t have to be dingy or dull; you can make your space more functional and stylish with a few simple changes. Your newly renovated space may even make you enjoy doing your laundry! Here are eight of our favorite basement laundry room ideas and a few considerations to keep in mind while remodeling.

When most homeowners think of renovations, they think of time-consuming projects that always run over budget. And often, they’re right. But updating your home doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Tearing down cabinets and installing brand-new hardwood floors aren’t the only ways to up your home design game.

With a bit of planning and elbow grease, you can refresh your space with inexpensive home remodeling projects that will have a considerable impact. Here are six DIY home projects that you can easily complete for less than $500.

Are you a sucker for quiet time and great stories? Having a comfortable reading nook is the perfect way to escape from the chaos of daily life and immerse yourself in a good book. With the right design and ambiance, you can create a relaxing and cozy space that will transport you to a world of imagination and tranquility. Let's talk about some of the best ways to create the perfect cozy reading nook and how to decorate your literary oasis. How to create a stunning reading nook As you plan out this area, first determine who this awesome space will be for. If you intend for the entire family to enjoy the reading nook, pick a central location in the home. Further, determine how you're going to store everyone’s favorite tales, whether bookshelves or something else, and decide where they will go. Remember that all the shelves will need to be lowered to the ground for young readers.

Alternatively, if you want the reading nook to be your own dedicated space, place the nook in your bedroom or tucked away in a small corner where there's only room for one.

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15 Innovative School Homework Ideas to Make Learning Fun

15 Innovative School Homework Ideas to Make Learning Fun

Aashita Pillai

Aashita is a writer here at Suraasa and has formerly worked as a Teacher Mentor for a couple of years. She wields words like weapons to help readers get clear and concise information.


General tips to keep students hooked to school homework, 15 innovative school homework ideas to engage your students, theme a: arts and crafts, theme b: physical and outside activities, theme c: digital activities, theme d: games, theme e: entrepreneurship.

“Hi teachers! I am your old friend, School Homework. Over time as education changed, so have I— thanks to the endless innovations that happened to me.  Let me take you through my life and the various innovations that made me your best friend- I was born in the 1920s to help students reinforce what they learned in class. Until the 1980s, I was basically just pen-and-paper-based assignments.  The Internet was born in 1983. From there onwards, I made my stride into the ‘digital era’.

Evolution of school homework

Until the beginning of 2020, I was slowly being integrated within online platforms and technology to help students learn better. Then at the onset of 2020, the world plunged into the COVID-19 pandemic. Schools shifted to a ‘remote learning’ mode of education. During this pandemic, you and I became very crucial in ensuring the continuity of our students’ learning. You all embraced creative approaches to keep the students engaged. You leveraged interactive games, virtual simulations, & more to make me engaging. Gone are the days when you, my dear teachers, would limit your homework to worksheets, textbook questions, literature reviews, and reports. Today as we stand here in 2023, there is no limit to innovative and exciting homework formats! Well, that’s from me. See you in the classrooms!”

Unlimited possibilities when school homework and innovation combine

So teachers, we heard from homework about how it has evolved over time. As it said, many innovative ways have come up to reinforce our students' learning. So, are you ready to make your students fall in love with these new school homework ideas? Let’s begin with understanding some general tips to keep your students engaged with their school homework.

1. Make it Relevant and Meaningful 

Connect the school homework to their lives, interests, or current events to make it more meaningful and relatable. For example, if it’s Christmas time, you can ask your students to explore the themes of charity, storytelling, etc.

2. Give Them a Choice

Allow students to have some choice and autonomy in their assignments. Ask them to select the format (e.g. written format in the online medium, oral format in the offline medium) in which they want to submit their homework. When they feel a sense of ownership, they are more likely to be motivated and engaged. This is how you become a 21st-century teacher who uses differentiated learning. 

3. Celebrate Their Achievements

When children get appreciated for their achievements or good behaviour, it boosts their self-confidence. It encourages them to repeat those actions. This creates a positive learning environment. They are more likely to deliver results when appreciated for their actions. Hence, you can celebrate their achievements via small rewards, recognition or a display of their work in class.

Let's move to the next part of this blog, where we will share innovative school homework ideas that will turn mundane homework into engaging learning sessions!  After assigning any of these innovative homework ideas, you might never hear students’ innovative excuses to avoid homework! To give you a quick run-through, these ideas have been grouped under some common themes. Under each theme, you will learn how to use 3 ideas listed alongside relevant examples to comprehend it completely. Come along as we give the ratty old homework a MAKEOVER!

By infusing the joy of arts and crafts into school homework, you can tap into the innate curiosity and imagination of your students. And you never know, you might end up being the person that shaped the next Da Vinci! So, let’s get right into it:

1. Create Your Storybook

Storybooks as creative holiday homework for nursery class

We all have heard stories. We have loved them and adored them. So why not give our students a chance to write one?  After the students submit their storybooks, you can review their stories and give personalised feedback. Such feedback addresses each student’s individual needs, strengths, and areas for improvement. This fosters a student-centric learning environment.  Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

2. Make Your Own Board Game

Holiday homework to make your own board game

Do you remember the joy of gathering around a table, rolling a dice, and playing Snakes & Ladders? As kids and even as adults, many of us love spending our time playing board games.  Now, picture becoming the teacher that integrates school homework with a board game! Students can design board games and incorporate artistic elements into their theme, board layout, cards, etc. They can become architects of fun and learning!

Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

3. Construct a Birdhouse

Summer vacation holiday homework to create a birdhouse

Now, let’s tap into the sweet nostalgia of DIY(Do it Yourself) Projects. It could be something as simple as bedsheet forts or something a little more complex like a birdhouse 🙂 Won’t it be wonderful to watch your students feel a sense of accomplishment when they build their own handmade creations?  Let’s focus on the idea of constructing a birdhouse. By assigning students this homework, you’ll additionally be encouraging kinesthetic learning . 

Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely: 

Students love spending their time outdoors. Assigning school homework that requires them to be outside is a big plus! It will also help them apply what’s taught in class in real-life situations and promote active learning.

4. Participate in a Scavenger Hunt

local area homework ideas

Everyone loves a good old mystery! Give your students the chance to be modern-day ‘Sherlock Holmes’ as they set out on scavenger hunts.  Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

5. Maintain a Physical Activity Journal

local area homework ideas

In this digital age, where mobile and laptop screens often dominate, the majority of the students lead sedentary lifestyles. School homework which encourages physical activity, can be a game-changer! And what better than maintaining a physical activity journal that helps with it? Additionally, it will also promote the healthy habit of having an active lifestyle among students.  Getting students to journal can seem tough, but with the right motivation & incentives, it can be done. Additionally, this can also be a fun summer holiday homework, where students can keep track of their activities all summer! Encourage them to document their daily exercise triumphs. Push them to go beyond their own records! Ask them to explore science concepts- BMI, heart and pulse rates, diet, and nutrition! Once you do this, exercise will not just be about breaking a sweat anymore. It will also be something that incorporates learning! Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

6. Conduct a Survey at a Local Supermarket

local area homework ideas

This outdoor activity is an extremely fun option for school homework. Most kids love running through the different aisles in a supermarket. Introducing a concept like surveys here gives them a chance to do some ‘real-life’ work and also provides much-needed relief to their parents!  Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely: 

In the age of tech-savvy students, we often find parents complaining about the excess screen time with their kids. But what if you could harness the untapped potential in technology? Today's kids are already immersed in the digital world, so why not tap into their enthusiasm and merge it with learning?  Let’s look at some innovative methods of assigning digital activities for school homework:

7. Record a Virtual Job Application

Homework for classes 9 to 12 related to career opportunities

This can be a fun homework assignment for students of all grades. One thing that we often forget as teachers is that school is not just about the present; it's also about the future. But often, we don’t discuss the future. This results in students being almost lost when it comes to their future career opportunities.  This is exactly where this school homework activity helps. Assigning school homework related to professions is a great chance for students to explore their career options. This, in turn, will help them be better prepared for life after school.  Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

8. Participate in Online Collaborative Projects

Online collaboration projects as holiday homework

Online projects are a catalyst for active learning and student engagement. They can be a tool for you to create a dynamic learning environment that goes beyond traditional classroom boundaries. Additionally, these activities enhance digital literacy and empower students to leverage technology for learning. Working on online collaborative projects will also help students learn how to function together as a team. This is something that also prepares them for life beyond school, where it’s crucial to learn to work together.

9. Virtual Cultural Exchange

Using cultural exchange as holiday homework

Cultural exchange events open doors to new horizons, offering students a unique chance to explore diverse cultures. By immersing them in new traditions, you develop acceptance, and empathy in your students. You give them a chance to have a broad and more inclusive perspective of the world. Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

Game-based school homework is one of the best ways to engage your students. Integrating learning within games creates a powerful synergy where education and entertainment merge seamlessly.  It’s time to tap into your students’ natural love for games and leverage it!

10. Use Minecraft as a Learning Tool

Summer vacation holiday homework using games

Ah, Minecraft! A name that brings back memories of endless adventures in pixelated landscapes. It’s a game that is a nostalgic reminder of our childhood.  But did you know that Minecraft can be more than just a game? It can be a powerful learning tool to level up the educational experience of your students.  💡Learn how to leverage Minecraft to make your classrooms more engaging! Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

11. Encourage Role-Playing Games

Using roleplay as creative holiday homework idea

Lights, camera, action! Role-playing games(RPGs) let students step into the shoes of a character and bring lessons to life. Even though RPGs are not typically classified as games, their unique blend of learning and fun makes them ideal for educational purposes.  You can assign students to act out roleplays based on a historical event, scientific concept or work of literature. They can develop characters, write dialogues, and present this to the class. Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

12. Online Challenges

Online coding as holiday homework design idea

You can introduce online challenges like coding of varying difficulties for different grade levels. Platforms like Scratch or can be helpful for this purpose. Coding challenges offer hands-on experience to students. It allows them to practice coding concepts and algorithms in a practical and engaging manner.  Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

In today's competitive world, students who embrace innovative thinking and an entrepreneurial mindset stand out. As a teacher, you can nurture these qualities in your students via thought-provoking school homework. Such assignments can ignite students' passion for problem-solving, creative thinking, and strategic planning. Let’s look at some of the ideas below.

13. Pitch Your Business Idea

Holiday homework idea of practising a business pitch

Have you watched shows like Shark Tank or Billion Dollar Buyer? Have you been completely captivated by the business pitches on these shows? Now, imagine doing the same for your students— unleashing their entrepreneurial spirit. It’s time to bring the hustle of the business world into your classrooms! Encourage students to develop a business idea and create a persuasive pitch. They should research their target market, competitors, and unique selling points. In fact, students can present their pitch using multimedia tools, such as slides or videos, highlighting the problem they're solving and the value their business brings. Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

14. Design a Mobile App

School homework idea to design mobile apps

Smartphones have become an integral part of our lives. Think about the countless hours that you spend on your smartphone, exploring different apps that make your life easier. This is a practice growing like fire amongst kids as well and is cause for serious concern! What if they spend time on their phone and learn at the same time? This homework assignment encourages students to apply their creativity and technical skills to develop a concept for a mobile application. Additionally, you can also assign this as a holiday homework assignment and let students go wild with learning during summer! Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely:

*Technologies like designing mobile applications can be too complex for the primary school. Hence, we focus on this idea only for middle and high school students.

15. Set up a Stall at the School Fair

School homework idea of setting up a stall at fair

This homework acts as an Introduction to Business 101 class for students of all grade levels. Students get to decide what stall to put up, then work on the logistics and finally manage the stall and finances on D-Day. This will teach students real-world skills and give them a feeling of ownership. Let's look at a few examples to understand this school homework approach more closely: 

Grade-Specific Tips to follow while Preparing School Homework ‍

1. primary school students ‍.

  • Keep it Interactive and Hands-on Younger children thrive on tactile and interactive experiences. Incorporate more of arts and crafts, storytelling, etc., to make homework enjoyable for them.
  • Use Visuals Vibrant colours will capture their attention and make tasks visually appealing.
  • Keep it Short Primary school students have limited attention spans. Give them small tasks that they can accomplish in a limited timeframe. ‍

2. Middle School students ‍

  • Offer More Choices Middle schoolers are often teenagers already on the precipice of changes beyond their control. They will appreciate having some control over their learning. Allow them to choose topics or formats that align with their interests.
  • Incorporate Technology Middle school students are often technologically savvy. Utilise online resources, interactive platforms, and digital tools to make homework more engaging and relevant to their interests.
  • Encourage Independent Research Foster their curiosity by assigning research-based projects. Encourage them to explore various sources and present their findings in creative ways. ‍

3. High School Students ‍

  • Encourage Critical Thinking and Analysis High schoolers are capable of higher-order thinking skills. Assign tasks that require critical thinking, problem-solving and analytical thinking.
  • Encourage Self-expression Offer creative assignments that allow them to express their thoughts, opinions and ideas. Remember that they are young adults finding their voice in a loud world. Encourage them to write essays, create multimedia presentations, or engage in spirited debates.
  • Push for Practical Application Assign tasks that connect to real-world situations, allowing them to see the relevance and importance of their learning. ‍

How to Improve Your Homework and Other Teaching Strategies?

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In a world where school homework is generally met with students’ whining, you can use these approaches to turn it into a gateway for innovation! By infusing ideas such as game-based learning, digital activities, and arts and crafts, you can help students engage with school homework meaningfully. This will foster a lifelong love for learning among your students, ultimately helping them succeed in and beyond the classroom. Want a short compilation of all the amazing school homework ideas? Click the button below

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  • Resources for ...
  • Local fieldwor...

Local fieldwork toolkit

Researching your local area: what are the opportunities for fieldwork.

Fieldwork can be can be carried out in a number of locations, both in or very close to the school grounds, or within the immediate local environment. Depending on the nature of your location (for example rural, urban, coastal etc), the confidence and experience of the staff team and the nature of the children involved, there are a number of opportunities for local fieldwork.

We have listed some initial ideas and suggested frameworks to whet your appetite. The 'preparing and resourcing your fieldwork' section provides further information about the activities and links to relevant resources.

Immediate School Grounds

Weather and microclimate studies. Where is the best place for a wind turbine, solar panels etc.? Using basic weather recording equipment. Links to sustainability, design & technology, maths

'My special place'. Using geotagged photos to describe a route to a special place in the school grounds, using geographical prose. Links to GIS, ICT, literacy

'Find the photo'. Children are given a close up image of a feature in the school grounds and have to work in teams to find objects. Improves observation skills

Garden and seating. Children work out the best place in the school grounds for some new seating and/or a wildlife garden. Links to sustainability/ESD, design and technology, maths

Mental maps. Children complete a mental sketch map of the school grounds. Good as a wet-weather alternative. Links to team building and group working

School grounds ecosystems. An investigation of soils, aspect and plant biodiversity. How and why are there variations around the grounds. Opportunity to create your own map. Links to science, also ESD

Flood risk. Using collecting buckets or rain gauges to find out how much water comes off the roofs of buildings in a rainstorm. Waterproofs required! Links to flood risk maps, maths to calculate areas plus volumes

Of course, the immediate school grounds can also be used as a way of trying out and practicing fieldwork techniques which may subsequently be used further afield. These include the use of GPS, using digital cameras effectively, field sketching, ‘pre-calibrating' environmental quality scores, and using more technical equipment such as quadrats and clinometers. If you are feeling brave there is also opportunity to try out other techniques within peer groups such as questionnaires, extended interviews and videos or DVDs.

Going slightly further afield into the local town, suburb or village can yield an additional range of opportunities.

Local hinterland

Clone town surveys. To what extent is your local town the same or different to other high streets in the country? Links to sustainability, design and technology, maths

Air pollution. Using lichens as bio-indicators of pollution. Conduct a transect away from a point/linear source of pollution such as a road. Links to GIS, ICT, literacy

Shopping ‘roots' survey. A look at globalisation through the origin of different products available in high street retailers. Where are products manufactured? Links to map skills, history

Perceptions of the local area. An opportunity to carry out extended interviews, podcasts / audio recordings of people - focusing on change and the future. Good or bad? Links to ICT, literacy

Making contact: who can help you with your fieldwork?

Making contact with relevant organisations There are a whole host of individuals, groups and organisations that can provide resources, assistance and support. Some may even provide free materials or offer their staff time for free to help you with out-of-classroom activities.

Who can help?

Organisations can support in a variety of activities:

Visits, including learning within the school grounds or local area, and extended schools activities on or off the school site

Do not forget activities provided by youth organisations, including voluntary organisations, cadet groups and local authority youth service provision, sports clubs, dance, theatre and arts organisations, and youth sections of organisations, such as the St John's Ambulance and RSPB

Mapping provision - Which providers?

In the first instance you will need to find out where activities are taking place, at what time, and for what age groups. It is also important to personally familiarise yourself with any new fieldwork or activity sites and to ensure that the resources offered by the provider are suitable for the age of children that you are taking out.

Below are some important questions that you may ask or share with external providers. They should also form part of your planning process:

How can you most effectively achieve the objectives of the visit? Are there opportunities within easy reach (geographically)?

How complicated are the arrangements likely to be? Would it be better for you if an external organisation handled them, for example coach transport to a site or location, facilities booking, etc?

The age and abilities of the young people - how accustomed are they to learning outside the classroom? Will they respond positively to an unknown face intervening and facilitating?

How experienced are you? Will it be more supportive for you to work with an external provider?

Can you find an external provider that can offer what you are looking for? How will you judge that they offer high-quality experiences, with safety effectively managed?

Do you feel you could forge a successful partnership with them? Could you see yourself using them from year to year and building a working relationship? This often happens in the case of residential fieldwork, for instance when groups re-book a field centre for the same week each year

What is the cost of the external provider? Do prices quoted include everything? Do they include travel? Note that many providers are ‘free', but you may still have to pay for the cost of travel to their place of work or fieldwork location

The key players and what they offer

There is a whole host of providers that can be used to assist in the planning and delivery of a KS3 fieldtrip, as well as some organisations that may just offer resources. The organisations listed below are really the big hitters, but you are also likely to find either local organisations or independents that would offer much the same thing. These could include local Environment Agency staff or Local authority staff, for example planners. NAFSO (National Association of Field Studies Officers) has a directory of local field centres.

Field Studies Council . National organisation of 17 centres which provides both field courses and publications, including fold-out charts and guides. Can be residential or day visits. Costs vary - £15.30 student/day

RSPB . Offers curriculum linked activities through the Living Classrooms programmes at over 40 locations across the country. Costs vary from £110 per day for each field teacher or £2.50 per pupil for half a day up to £4.50 for a full day

National Trust . The Trust operates a large education service for schools at many of its properties, welcoming 500,000 students per annum to its sites. The activities cover a wide spectrum of the curriculum including history, science and geography. Schools can join the National Trusts as group members to enjoy free entry to properties. This costs between £32 and £102. Additional charges are made for educational support. Typical prices start from £2.50 per pupil for half a day to £5.50 for a full day

WWT . The Trust has nine centres across the UK where active learning programmes focus on wetland habitats and the creatures that live there. Some visits are free to some sites (for example, Greater London schools can visit the London Wetland Centre in Barnes for free). Costs are charged for other centres

If you require further information, the Learning Outside the Classroom website includes a section on sources of additional help.

Local Universities and HE colleges

An additional and often untapped source of information, help and support may be local universities and other HE institutions. There may also have the benefit of students that can support supervised work, as well as access to equipment, for example, a set of GPS devices.

What you should know before you go

Preliminary planning and permission

There are a number of things to consider when doing the initial organisation for a trip. This is really an ‘initial checklist'.

Initial discussion with HoD, HoY or head teacher

Aims and educational objectives (including links to KS3 PoS)

Group involved

Date, duration and location of activities

Plan and itinerary, including any contingency measures

Staffing implications and use of parents as helpers, etc

Discussion with colleagues of children out of school

Put dates in school diary

Consult schools guidance documents and contact LEA, for example Advisor

Safety, insurance and local regulations. Insurance cover for staff and pupils

LEA guidance (generic and technical advice)

Charging procedures and affordability issues

Consult guidance prepared by professional associations, for example RGS-IBG, GA

Obtain permission and approval for activity from:


LEA if required

Education Committee if necessary

Parents and carers

Once some of these early logistical elements are considered, you are then able to get down to the organisational elements for the local visit:

Initial site visit: If you are leading a group it is essential that you visit the site during the planning stage (you can reclaim travel costs from the overall trip budget). The purpose of this visit is to familiarise yourself with the site, complete risk assessments and meet any sites owners, guides or landowners. This will also be the time when you can get involved in some initial geographical research, finding out for example about the history of an area, speaking to people about changes (you may even consider interviewing them ready as a podcast).

Money: Estimate costs and allow a margin (say 10%) for any unforeseen expenses. These should be collected and banked well in advance. Your school is likely to have a policy on charging for trips and what to do about children / parents who cannot afford such trips. Even a local trip may involve some expenditure for hiring school minibuses for example, or even buying in additional staff cover for the visit.

Transport: Ensure that any rail, bus, coach, car and parking arrangements are completed in advance. Make sure that everyone involved is aware of the location and departure/arrival times. If you are taking students in your own or a hired vehicle remember to check your insurance, the condition of the vehicle, school/authority regulations and licensing (especially for minibuses when a license is issued post 1997).

Insurance: Check that the LEA holds public liability for losses against injury, death and property damage. Outline the insurance position in writing to colleagues and parents/carers.

Informing parents/guardians/carers: It is a good idea to send home a letter at the beginning of Year 7 outlining the importance of fieldwork and its place within your school curriculum. That way, hopefully, you can get parents or guardians on your side and they can foresee future trips and potential cost implications. For each trip, you should give information in writing in the form of a consent form. This needs to be signed by parents/carers and then returned to you, including any monies if relevant. The form should always include medical information, any costs, operating guidelines, the location of the visit, contact numbers and departure and arrivals times.

Using the stakeholders

Stakeholders are people who should be consulted or can help assist with the local fieldwork visit.

Parents and carers can be used as additional adults on school trips, but they should be subject to CRB checking as a precaution beforehand. If parents are assisting in an activity which also involves their own children, do not place them in a position where their duty of care to the group might conflict with their parental role. Ideally, they should be given responsibility for a group that does not include their child.

Local Authority Advisor

There are several different job titles for local authority advisors who can help you with planning learning outside the classroom:

Advisor/Consultant for Educational Visits

Learning Outside the Classroom Advisor

Offsite Visits Advisor or External Visits Advisor

Enrichment Visits Advisor

Outdoor Education Advisor

Often Advisors will have experience in education, teaching or youth work and in leading high-quality visits. They will generally provide advice and support on risk management in a variety of contexts and have sufficient practical experience to provide generic and/or technical advice on a broad range of activities. They may also be able to organise, facilitate and deliver effective training (for example, for visit leaders and teachers).

Colleagues, formal and informal support networks

An important, but perhaps underutilised source of advice, guidance and resources include:

Forums, for example the SLN Geography Teachers' network

Colleagues from other schools or regional networks. You can establish links here so that resources and expertise can be shared

Shorter term preparation and planning

Towards the end of the planning phase there are a number of components that make up the final checklist.

Developing a framework . The purpose of this is to include a detailed plan or schedule so that the learning aims and objectives can be realised. Such a plan should not only include specific locations and sites for activities, but also group sizes, etc. Whatever plans are made, be prepared to review them regularly, especially in terms of changing weather, group sizes and staffing.

Resourcing the fieldwork activities . This is all about careful preparation of the resources that will be required for the fieldwork, for example diagrams, maps, handouts and recording sheets. It can also include GIS maps and web pages. You will need to prepare any equipment and check it is functioning, for example, replacing or recharging the batteries in digital cameras.

Preparing the children. This is an important, but often neglected area of the pre-fieldwork preparation. The children themselves need to be inducted and trained in the fieldwork techniques as well as what to expect within an unfamiliar environment. It is possible to use ‘virtual fieldwork' (for example photos and videos) to simulate the location. This can be a particularly important tool for reinforcing health and safety issues or what to wear in terms of appropriate clothing and footwear. Use this also as an opportunity to share the aims and objectives of the fieldwork and to assess any prior learning or experiences (such as from primary school).

At this point staff should be allocated responsibility for any pupils with special needs, or children who may have behavioural problems that could interfere with the smooth running of the trip or visit.

Preparing and resourcing your fieldwork

This section provides a selection of brief ideas for fieldwork, building on the ideas outlined in 'researching your local area' above.

Sample activities

Clone Town?

To what extent is your local town the same or different to other places? There is some concern that all our town and city centre high streets are beginning to become homogenous. By looking at the type and variety of shops near the high street it is possible to see what extent they really are ‘clones'. See the  New Economics Foundation websites for more information, or have a look at the full fieldwork activity.

New design for school grounds

Assessing the best places for a wilderness or nature area, seating spaces, greenhouse, active play-space and pond. School grounds are increasingly important not only as green spaces, but as having a more important function as areas for children and young people to relax, socialise and just enjoy being out-of-doors. Start by completing a basic sketch or mental map of the area and then work in small groups to be in charge of creating or managing different zones. This can be supplemented by activities such as environmental quality surveys or even simple wildlife surveys involving quadrats. The Growing Schools website has a number of good resources. There are also resources available on the Learning Through Landscapes website .

How to improve?

Assessing the environmental quality and quality of life of contrasting areas in the local town or village and providing a supporting plan of improvements.

Best place to put renewable energy: Wind farm and solar

Making a judgement on the best places to site different types of renewable energy in the local area. This is a very topical theme with the relatively high costs of energy and fuel. The activity can be carried out at a variety of scales and locations. Wind potential, for example, can be measured using wind speed recorders or your qualitative scales (based on Beaufort descriptors) and compared to a database of averages . Grid sampling methods can be used to compare different locations and see the impact of altitude.

Geocaching is like a treasure hunt adventure which uses a GPS to find caches and clues in the landscape through a high-tech treasure trail.

Urban studies

Most schools are located close to urban areas of some description, making these accessible and familiar locations for fieldwork.

Ecosystem studies

Wherever you go, whether in urban or rural areas, it is very difficult to escape vegetation. There are plenty of examples of small scale habitats from the school grounds and roadside verges to woodlands and river corridors.

Resources you may find useful

An aerial view of a town with green grass and orange roofs

Clone town survey

An alternative take on the urban study

A gorup of children sitting on a bench looking at a field with trees

School grounds fieldwork

Ideas for quick and easy fieldwork in your School Grounds

Two female students on a sandy beach, one is holding an ranging pole and the other is using an instrument to measure the height of dunes in the distance

Quick and easy fieldwork ideas

You do not necessarily have to change your entire fieldtrip in order to bring it up to date

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Site search, 27 inspirational homework areas and study stations.

Steal ideas from these amazing home office spaces and watch the good grades roll in this semester

Adjacent Homework Station

local area homework ideas

Create a bright and lively space that’ll get your kid’s creative juices flowing! The cabinets used here were ordered in a factory-applied yellow that echoes the hutch across the room. There’s no reason you can’t get this look with some vibrant paint and a weekend of DIY. Putting a desk in a space just outside the kitchen provides a bit of privacy for independent workers but keeps them close just in case they need homework help. Easy access to snacks is also a plus.

Storage-Loaded Homework Alcove

local area homework ideas

Build a space-smart little office right in your kid’s room. All you’ll need is some stock lumber, storage bins, and tracks for a sliding work surface.

Creative Closet Space

local area homework ideas

Take the doors off of a little-used closet and line the walls with a fun pattern to create a handy homework alcove. Your kid’s design ideas may not match your own, but applying their feedback will make the space—and studying—more appealing to them.

Armoire Office

local area homework ideas

This clever contraption features a door with a fold-down table for a work station that can be tucked away when the studying is done.

Cozy Corner

local area homework ideas

Some wall-mounted shelves or cubbies and a small computer desk makes for a quick and easy study station.

Corkboard Wall

local area homework ideas

Cover an entire wall in cork tiles or chalkboard paint to make a bold—and functional— design statement.

Kitchen Counter Homework Station

local area homework ideas

This tiny desk at the end of a counter makes for an open-yet-compact workspace that isn’t tucked away into a cabinet or closet. It’s perfect for younger kids who need homework help and supervision while working.

Plugged-In Study Nook

local area homework ideas

Carved into a kitchen, this desk faces a wall to limit distractions for students trying to complete their assignments. Built-in cabinetry makes for ample book and supply storage.

Great Room Homework Station

local area homework ideas

If you don’t have a dedicated room for a home office or study space, you’ll have to learn how to share. Living spaces can lend themselves nicely to multiple uses. Put a vacant wall to use with a built-in work unit. But if there’s a television in the room, make sure it’s turned off at homework time.

Light, Bright Desktop

local area homework ideas

For sit-down kitchen desks, like the one shown here, leave about 30 inches between the bottom of the lampshade and the counter.

Budget Home Office

local area homework ideas

Kelly and Wayne Averbeck of Jerome, Idaho, used leftovers and bargain buys to age their office to perfection. Similarly, you can use what you’ve got to incorporate a homework nook to your existing built-in storage. See An Office Update With Vintage Appeal to learn more about this budget remodel.

Rustic Reclaimed Study Station

local area homework ideas

Outfitting a room almost entirely with recycled or reused finds can prove a challenge. Too much salvage, and your space starts to look like a junkyard—which is why interior designer Sally Bailey lets simplicity reign in her home studio, shown here. This interesting space makes a great study station for older kids, while teaching the importance of eco-friendly design. For more on how you can get this look, see How to Create a Rustic Reclaimed Workspace .

Side-by-Side Seating

local area homework ideas

This kitchen office was designed for a mom who wanted a space she could share with her 12-year-old son. Key features include outlets for two computers, a cordless phone, and a single printer, undercabinet task lighting, and a dividing column of drawers to stow craft and office supplies. This arrangement makes a great cooperative learning area for homes with multiple students, too.

Creative Catch-All

local area homework ideas

When kids are in the picture, the kitchen office can be part homework desk, part high-tech hub, part first-aid center. That’s the case with this multitasker designed by Greenwich, Connecticut, architect Jay Haverson: The lower cabinets in the teak-topped desk store office supplies, phone books, and recipes. Emergency supplies, including medicines and flashlights, as well as electronics, are hidden up high behind touch-latch cabinet doors. A corkboard “backsplash” creates a home for memos.

Space-Saving Station

local area homework ideas

If you’re really short on space, adding a dedicated homework station can be as easy as building this. Like a ladder-rack, this clever unit props up against a wall and can be anchored or left portable.

Modern Home Office

local area homework ideas

Lift storage units off the ground! Build and hang large, high-impact shadowboxes instead of mounting traditional shelves.

High Impact Work Station

local area homework ideas

Boldly colored storage boxes are great for stashing supplies and matching binders are perfect for filing graded papers.

Hidden Study Station

local area homework ideas

Slim bifold doors make it easy to hide a workspace that’s in a common area.

Wall-Mounted Wonder

local area homework ideas

This compact, folding work surface doubles as covered supply storage unit. Create a similar space with easy-to-install wall-mount desks .

Adjustable Storage Station

local area homework ideas

Create a nook with a network of adjustable wall-mounted shelving if built-in storage is out of your budget.

Catch-All Cubby Bins

local area homework ideas

From wicker to brightly-colored fabrics, choosing the right storage bins for open shelving can add to the look of your space.

Pretty and Punctual Homework Area

local area homework ideas

Be mindful of clutter, but allow your child to pick a few decor items to personalize her space. A wall-hung clock will get your kid into the habit of scheduling and getting work done in a timely manner—or at least in time for their favorite TV show.

Walled-Off Study Station

local area homework ideas

Throw up some wall frames and create built-in room dividers, like the ones shown here, in a larger rooms.

Work Space With a View

local area homework ideas

Make homework time pleasant with desks facing a window. You’ll eliminate the need for using a lamp or overhead lighting in the daytime.

Kid’s Corner

local area homework ideas

A small corner of a kid’s room is all you need to create a homework station.

In-House Computer Lab

local area homework ideas

Make sure your study stations have enough outlets to power computers and charge gadgets. In homes with more than two kids, a set up like the one shown here ensures all of your young learners have an equal amount of real estate.

Reader-Created Study Station

local area homework ideas

Reader Carol Dregne of Galena, Illinois, created this vibrant work station for her two boys to share. The world-map wall covering makes a great learning tool—and beats an ordinary atlas any day of the week.

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    Transform your study space with these creative ideas for a productive homework area. Make studying enjoyable and boost productivity with these top tips and designs.

  22. 27 Inspirational Homework Areas and Study Stations

    Adjacent Homework Station. Create a bright and lively space that'll get your kid's creative juices flowing! The cabinets used here were ordered in a factory-applied yellow that echoes the hutch across the room. There's no reason you can't get this look with some vibrant paint and a weekend of DIY. Putting a desk in a space just outside ...

  23. FREE!

    This fantastic 'Our local area' planning overview for teaching children about the local area in geography in KS1, is two pages long. The first page contains a brief introduction to the 'Our Local Area' unit, and the assessment statements. This page also features a list of home learning tasks your children can do to consolidate and ...