The Best Kids’ Desks for Work and Play


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Jun 27, 2023

The Best Kids’ Desks for Work and Play

Even if your child is back in the classroom, it’s important that they have a dedicated space at home for working and storing supplies. This back-to-school season, consider giving them their very own

Even if your child is back in the classroom, it’s important that they have a dedicated space at home for working and storing supplies. This back-to-school season, consider giving them their very own age-appropriate desk. When it comes to kids’ desks, a top priority is comfort: Students shouldn’t find themselves hunched over or struggling to reach the floor. (Unsurprisingly the standing desk revolution has reached this market, and we’ve included some examples of these in our roundup as well.) Importantly, desks should also feel secure—no wobbling allowed!—and should be able to support a goodly number of books. They should also be safe, and many of our picks feature rounded edges and other adaptations to avoid pinched skin. Finally, desks should be a breeze to clean. You certainly want your kids to use them often, but a work space that is spick and span makes for a clear mind and clean homework. Check out our favorite kids’ desks below.

This standing desk from Jaswig may look a tad unconventional, but in our eyes it’s the perfect first table for studying or making art. Made of natural birch, it can be adjusted in 1.5-inch increments to heights between 27 and 35 inches as your child grows. To change the height, simply lift the desktop, slide it to where you want it, and engage the locking mechanism. The material is lightweight, so children can do this on their own. The base features a bar that serves as a footrest, and the table itself has 18 by 23 inches of space. The desk is suitable for children from 6 to 12 years old (but note that this desk also comes in an adult size perfect for middle schoolers and college students). Add a tall stool for even more flexibility.

This desk evokes old schoolhouse desks with hinged lids, though it is minimal looking enough to suite any decor. Its work surface, which measures 23.25 by 16 inches, lifts up so kids can keep tools out of sight in the capacious storage space underneath. It’s smartly designed, featuring gaps around its lid to prevent fingers from getting squished. Solidly made of wood, it comes in white, gray, or natural finishes that wipe clean and resist staining, and it is sold with a matching chair. Everything comes together quickly with screws, so all you need is a Phillips-head screwdriver for assembly. Sized for children three to eight years old.

This desk, which comes with a matching bench, offers the best balance of price and performance. The laminate top, which measures a generous 35.5 by 21.75 inches, sits on sturdy powder-coated steel legs and is very smooth, plus it’s easy to clean with soap and water, making it ideal for art making as well as homework. On one side, find a refillable roll of craft paper you can unfurl over the top of the table; on the other are two hooks for hanging up backpacks and other items. The table and bench legs have rubber feet to protect floors at home. The set is available in four colors and is suitable for ages six and up.

This versatile mechanical desk can be adjusted in 1.25-inch increments to heights between 26 and 42 inches and features a swinging footrest for fidgeters. The 36-by-24-inch work surface is made of a thermoplastic laminate coating to resist scratching and even tolerate high temperatures and chemical reactions. The rest of it is made of powder-coated high-quality tubular steel for durability. This desk also solves an issue many people have with standing desks: There is actually some storage, in the form of book box directly beneath the tabletop and a lower shelf that’s perfect for bulkier objects like books. Another simple feature we like? Lips on three sides, to keep pencils from rolling off, are helpful without being obtrusive. Built to withstand schoolroom conditions, this desk is suitable for students in grades 3-12.

If you plan on traveling, a portable lap desk may be a smart option. This plastic model easily collapses flat for storage but unfolds into a sturdy work surface measuring 12 by 17 inches. Its lid even opens to reveal a primary compartment for paper or slim notebooks and two grooves for pencils and pens. At just over two pounds, this lap desk is lightweight and easy for kids to carry—and they can even use it outdoors. Great for kids of any age.

Each item in this three-piece modular set can be utilized in multiple ways depending on your needs. The 26.6-inch-wide desk can be flipped over and used as a child’s bench, while the two chairs can be transformed into smaller tables by turning them on their sides. When not in use by children, the units make ideal modernist ottomans and tables for adults. Each lightweight piece is made of durable plywood with a waterproof coating, and handy slots in the wood ensure that you can easily rearrange them. The set ships fully assembled—can you ask for greater convenience?