Are you experiencing the ‘back to home schooling’ blues? The Easter holidays are almost at an end and for many working parents the prospect of another indefinite period of juggling working from home with home schooling looms next week.
The first week of the lockdown was embraced by many working parents, full of enthusiasm and a positive attitude towards teaching their children and keeping up with their work. However, by week two, the reality of this almost impossible situation left many clamouring for a break over the holiday. Now that’s nearly over and there is currently no end to the lockdown in sight, working parents can be forgiven for dreading what next week will bring.
However, there are ways that you can improve the balancing act that is working from home whilst looking after your children. Here are our five tips to try to make things better in your house next week:
Routine - lots of experts talk about the importance of routine for adults working from home - the same goes for children. Maintain regular bed and getting-up times and schedule meal times throughout the day too. Punctuating each 24 hour period with recurring moments helps everyone feel secure.
Timetable - this might sound too rigid, but having a timetable for the children’s learning will help them to know what’s happening each day and encourage them to work more independently, which will help you.
Space - set aside an area of the house to be the school room, where all the materials for learning are kept. This will reduce time spent searching for pens and paper at the start of each day.
Sharing - if possible, share the teaching with a partner so it is not all the responsibility of one parent - when this isn’t possible, schedule TV or Lego time for the children so you get a break.
Communication - make sure your colleagues know when you will and won’t be available to talk to them - juggling children around your work means you will not be able to work a 9-5 day - keep communicating so people understand your new, temporary routine.
Having given home schooling a good try before Easter, it is fine to now accept that actually, this is a really difficult thing to do whilst you're also trying to hold down your job. Training to be a teacher takes a long time - you are not expected to take on this role. You are there to guide and facilitate your children’s learning - if that just means reading for ten minutes a day that’s fine.
If you’d like to learn more about how to juggle your job whilst your children are at home, why not take our new e-learning course? Priced at £15, it covers the topics discussed here in more detail, provides advice on maintaining good mental health during this difficult time and has some downloadable resources to help working parents.
The first 100 applicants to our new course will receive it free. Just fill out the contact form on our website and we will send the first successful applicants a code.