It’s hard to believe that home-schooling and working from home has quickly become the new normal. Juggling these two tasks can be an uphill challenge, but there are some simple steps you can incorporate into your routine to make things a little easier.
If you haven’t already, create a weekly timetable for you and the children and then break each day down into sections. Create a section of what you need to get done in the morning, early afternoon and late afternoon and do the same for your children.
Make sure everyone in the household can easily see this timetable, so they know what they are doing throughout the day. If you have younger children try to make completing a task fun. For example, each task they complete they get a gold star, depending on how many stars they receive at the end of the day will depend on what treats they get. This should encourage younger children to complete all their learning for the day.
Not every day will be productive
In a previous blog post we covered how to stay productive whilst working from home.
However, no matter how much you plan and get organised, there will always be some days that just don’t go as planned, so expect the unexpected. For example, a big deadline gets moved up, the Wi-Fi stops working, your children are having an off day and your inbox is overflowing. Take a break to refocus and prioritise the best you can.
Remember to be realistic when creating your schedule for the week and don’t be too hard on yourself if certain tasks don’t get completed.
Communication is key to everything.
If you share parenting and home schooling responsibilities with a partner, try to split your time fairly between tasks. For example, one home schools in the morning whilst the other works and then switch roles in the afternoon. Discuss your workload with one another and the times you need to be at your computer for a meeting or call. If you both need to be working at the same time, there is no harm in letting your children entertain themselves, whether it’s school related or not.
If you are home schooling and working at home by yourself, try to prioritise important tasks in the afternoon, preferably when the school day has finished.
Make sure your children understand when you are working and when you are not, as blurring these lines may mean you lose focus on your work tasks. Ask your children to write down any questions they have whilst you are working. Then provide them with a list of activities to do when they can’t move forward without your help. Once you have finished work, be sure to revisit those questions and help them where you can.
Lastly, be open and honest with your employer if you know it’s going to be challenging to keep up with your normal work schedule. They should arm you with the right tools and resources to achieve a healthy balance.
Now that you have set up your own schedule, it’s time to divide household responsibilities.
Giving children responsibilities will not only help you out, but also teach them to help themselves. Set up a system so your children can independently handle certain situations, like feeding the dog or preparing a snack. You could also encourage older siblings to help with their younger siblings, whether they play teacher for an hour or just help keep them entertained, giving your children responsibility whilst they are young can help them become more independent.
DESKGO Office Manager, Jo, Comments: “My biggest challenge has been trying to engage 2 children in education at the same time as my work hours. My children are at an age where they learn through discussion, questions and play. Therefore, no matter what I ask them to do, during break times I need to help them and discuss all these things with them.”
Use technology to your advantage
Technology is great for keeping your children occupied as well as a helpful tool to educate them when you’re not around.
There are so many resources on the internet to help you keep on track with their learning and development. We recommend making a list of useful apps and programmes suitable for your child’s age and trialling which one works best for you.
Did you know that young children learn many different skills through play such as cognitive skills, physical abilities, new vocabulary and social skills.
With this in mind, review how much study your child should be completing, as younger children can learn a lot through play.
Focus on the positives
Finally, it’s worth remembering to focus on the positives. Whilst some days may be tougher than others, try to cherish moments you wouldn’t normally see, like the process of your child learning a new skill or everyone pulling together as a family.
Mastering a work life and a school life balance can be tough, so try to find a routine that works for everyone. Remember that these are very challenging times and not everything will be perfect, so don’t blame yourself if things don’t go to plan, and instead enjoy this time with your family.
If you’re curious how the DESKGO team are getting on working from home, read our blog on The joys and struggles of working from home with the DESKGO team.
Book a tour of the DESKGO offices here: https://deskgo.sports-booker.com/customer/