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Help them discover the magic of a good book by designing a reading nook that’s also packed with activities for kids to do at home.
One of the greatest gifts you can give your children is a love of literature. And like so many things, when it comes to tiny humans, the best way to encourage their passion is to let them slowly discover it for themselves. Creating a DIY children’s reading corner is about designing a space that works for your kids, taking into account the way they interact and the things they love most. It’s a great way to keep kids entertained at home.
You’ll be surprised what a difference a few key pieces of furniture can make to the books, craft, artworks and trinkets they already have scattered around the house. By bringing them together to form a cosy, colourful and calming reading area, you’ll be giving them a safe place to curl up with a book, draw and discover lots of fun ways to stay happy and busy at home. As a bonus, you might even get a few minutes of peace and quiet each day!
When you begin thinking about your book nook, furniture is a great place to start. Map out what will fit in your kids’ bedroom and go from there. Our kids room decorating secret is to keep shelves low and at kids’ eye level.
This will encourage them to interact with all the books on the shelves without having to ask you and it also keeps the area safe. If you have taller furniture with drawers, be sure to have them professionally bracketed to the wall to prevent them toppling over.
Small, cubed shelves make great children’s reading corner furniture. Not only are they easy to access, they can hold everything from picture books to school bags, and they can also be mixed and matched together, either laid on their sides or upright.
Once you have your big pieces sorted, add in some small, bright chairs, lots of cushions and a nice big rug to protect floorboards or your nicer carpet. Choose a low-pile rug that can be easily vacuumed; anything too shaggy will collect pencil shavings and playdough faster than you can say “pack-up time”!
Pinboards, whiteboards or frames to house kids’ paintings will contain some of the glorious chaos, so the reading nook walls don’t get too hectic. Having some white space or natural light on walls will mean the corner will feel cosy but not cluttered and overwhelming.
If you have children of different ages, it’s a great idea to break up the space and make it work for their individual interests. But it doesn’t need to be a huge area. It can be as simple as keeping the toddler’s books and colourful art in the lower cubes and making a separate bookshelf into a dedicated tech and school supplies space. Add a bean bag or cushion for your tween or teen to relax in while they work on their tablet or listen to music during study time.
Colour coding kids’ books isn’t just a cute idea from Pinterest; it actually motivates them as well! Packing up and putting away is a lot more fun when you can make a game of grouping picture books into colour and height order. It also makes it a lot easier to find their favourites and you’d be surprised how quickly they can tell you that their Paddington Bear book is in the red section and Spot flip book is in the yellow cube. By grouping books into colour and height, they’re also learning STEM concepts at the same time.
Kids love displaying their own works of art and projects. It gives them a sense of control over the children’s reading corner. Even better, get them to help design and decorate the space. Why not whip up the basic alphabet out of construction paper, then challenge them to turn each letter into their own work of art?
Doing a letter a night before dinner can be a great way to help small minds unwind. You could motivate them to think outside the box (or should we say inside the box?) to decorate unusual spots like the inside of their cubby shelves or even make collages on plastic tubs and turn the cubby shelves into drawers.
It’s amazing how much of an impact wall art can make! Bring in a cool and colourful globe, as well as fun educational posters to help ignite your child’s mind while they are chilling in their creative zone. Learning doesn’t always have to be about sitting and studying. Just having charts on display in the children’s reading corner will reinforce the topics and allow them to absorb the content as part of their daily lives.
We might call it a children’s reading corner, but it’s really much more than an area for reading a book. Feature shelving can hold all their knick-knacks and craft creations, while a communal colouring-in spot will make the corner ideal for siblings and play dates.
A clever creativity table with a handy roll of paper they can pull out for drawing time means it’s easy to roll it away when they want to do playdough or craft. Having all this in one place where children can come together adds a sense of camaraderie.