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Create a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

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A morning work basket isn’t just for young students. Older students can be more independent with a morning work basket of their own.

Create a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

What Is a Morning Work Basket?

A work basket doesn’t have to be a literal basket.

It can be a file folder, a letter tray, an online document, or a clipboard.

Whatever the format, a morning work basket lists assignments and contains necessary items for the student to complete some subjects independently.

Benefits of a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

The morning is a busy time, especially for the teaching parent.

If you have younger children, they likely take much of your morning time.

Older students shouldn’t simply be around waiting for instructions.

A morning work basket gives them everything they need to start their schoolwork independently (no coaching from you).

It allows for a productive start to the day.

Create a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

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Ideas for a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

What can you put in a morning work basket for older students?

Check out this list of ideas.

Journal Prompts

A journal helps students practice their writing skills.

Reflective prompts assist the student in thinking deeply.

Brain Teasers

Your older student can improve critical thinking and problem-solving skills through brain teasers and logic puzzles.

Vocab Flashcards

Your student can practice foreign language vocabulary words or expand his English vocabulary with flashcards.

They can also make the flashcards as another morning work basket activity.

Math Practice Worksheets

Practice math problems with worksheets.

Morning work baskets are best for reviewing concepts, not introducing new ones.

Create a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

Reading Comprehension Passages

Work on reading comprehension by assigning passages and reading comprehension questions.

Art Projects

Place art supplies in (or near) the morning work basket to encourage creative expression and exploration.

You can give drawing prompts or allow for free expression (but put a time limit on it).

Science Experiment Kits

Hands-on learning is always fun. Put a science experiment kit in the morning work basket.

Coding Challenges

Develop STEM skills with coding challenges or programming tasks.

Current Events

Include a current events article for analysis.

You could require a simple summary or ask comprehension questions about it.

Worksheets for Language Practice

Worksheets (or quizzes) on foreign language vocabulary and grammar are great for a morning work basket for older students.

Create a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

Logic Games

Warm up those reasoning skills for the day with crossword puzzles or sudoku.

DIY Science Projects

No kit is necessary! Have your older student follow instructions for a science lab or project. You provide the materials.

Or turn them loose to design their own science project.

Creative Writing Prompts

Develop your student’s storytelling ability by assigning a creative writing prompt.

Primary Sources

Learn all about history from the people who were there! Have your older student read and annotate a primary source document.

Engineering Kits

Work on your student’s spatial reasoning skills by assigning a building or robotics kit.

Graphic Organizers

Does your older student need to plan their schedule, a project, or a piece of writing?

Place a graphic organizer in the morning work basket so they can break the task down into parts.

Music Composition Tools

Explore musical creativity by asking the student to compose a piece of music for their instrument or using an online music generator.

Create a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

Debate Prep

Have your student research a debate topic and come up with points and evidence to support those points.

Critical Reading Passages

Critical reading passages are standard components of the SAT.

Provide a passage and ask reading comprehension and analysis questions.

Label or Draw Maps

Work on geography knowledge (and cartography skills) by drawing or tracing maps of various parts of the world.

Digital Literacy Skills

Access online resources to work on digital literacy skills.

These could include word processing, presentation, design, and spreadsheet software tutorials.

Math Games

Make learning fun and engaging by assigning math games like “24” and “KenKen.”

Virtual Field Trip

Many cities, museums, zoos, and historical sites offer virtual field trips. Assign one for the morning work basket.

Check out these virtual field trips to get started.

Create a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

What to Put in a Morning Work Basket for Older Students

Your older student can be productive and independent with a morning work basket.

Try some of these ideas (and change them up periodically) to give every morning a strong start.

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