For a child, a bedroom is so much more than a place to sleep; it’s a playground, a study station and a place for them to entertain their friends.
It is also a space for self-expression, where they can explore their identity and pursue their own hobbies – however noisy they may be! Help your child to make the most of their own space through their growing up years with a room fit for sleep, work and play.
Of course, the main function of a child’s bedroom is to provide a space for sleep. Children need the right cues to learn when it is time to sleep and when it is time to play, so it makes sense to create separate ‘zones’ for activity and rest.
Letting your child choose their own bedding, comfy blankets and cushions will help make the sleep space feel like their own. A night light or bedside table with a lamp within easy reach, will help them to feel safe and comfortable when it’s time to go to bed.
In busy family homes, children can need a quiet space of their own away from noise and interruptions. This is something that is particularly important for older children if there is homework to do!
Create a ‘work zone’ free from clutter and distractions. You will need a desk with a wide, flat surface, a task lamp plus a comfortable chair at the right height.
Bookshelves are a great way to keep textbooks, stationery and other clutter away from the desktop, and a pinboard above the desk gives children a visual aid for brainstorming ideas or reminding themselves of facts ahead of an exam. A beanbag in the work zone offers an additional space to read quietly, and also doubles up as a fun lounging space for when they have friends over.
We all remember our childhood bedrooms fondly as the location for many an adventure which, in our memories at least, stretched far beyond those four walls! Learning to play independently encourages self-expression and creative thinking; according to Peter Gray, a research professor and psychologist, some of the most important skills that a child can learn are discovered through play.
Having their own space and learning to take responsibility for their toys and possessions is a great way to encourage independent thinking. Try keeping a toy box or storage unit in the room, so that they can tidy their own things away at the end of each day.
When it comes to designing children’s rooms, there are no rules. However we do know that a child’s room should be a place for comfort, discovery, play and memory making with enough space for them to be themselves, yet walls enough to build solid foundations of character, experience, knowledge and good judgement.