If the thought of working from home wasn’t worrying some people enough, parents are now having to think about their children’s education and how this will be achieved alongside trying to keep a positive and productive workflow at home.
However, homeschooling isn’t something new, in fact, there are thousands of children who are homeschooled across the UK whilst their parents work from home.
Here are some tips on how home working and homeschooling can be achieved together:
Patience is a virtue
Both you and your children have just been thrown out of your usual routines, so whilst working from home and homeschooling is going to be challenging for you, it’s also going to take some time for the kids to get used to. Think of it as starting a new job and for them, starting a new school. Everything isn’t going to be perfect straight away but give it some time and naturally, everything will fall into place.
We AREN’T working 9 to 5
Throw out that 9 to 5 working day thinking. That may have been your normal office hours, but now you have some children who have just joined your new working environment.
Instead of having a timing schedule for the day, try to make more of a routine for everyone. Maybe you get up an hour earlier to have a morning coffee and catch up on emails whilst the kids are still in bed.
Why not have your morning ‘work’ meeting with your ‘new colleagues’ over breakfast and discuss what everyone’s plan is for the day. The key is to not be strict on timing but focus more on what can be achieved throughout that day.
Include lifestyle within learning
The benefit of working from home is that you can get jobs done around the house as you take 5-minute breaks or whilst you’re on lunch. The benefit of homeschooling is you can get the kids involved in these jobs too.
The key here is to make it more of a learning exercise rather than a ‘chore’. For example – If you’re wanting to prepare a meal for the evening dinner, get your children to help with measurements for ingredients and follow directions. In this one task, you are helping with maths and science, whilst also teaching them some skills in the kitchen.
Include outdoor activities
Your children will be used to having an outdoor break and lunchtime at school where they are able to run around and let off some steam, so it’s important to allow them to do the same when learning from home.
Whether it be in the garden, or for older children it may be down the local park, but getting out to have some fresh air will do them some good.
This can also be a perfect opportunity for you to get some time to yourself in order to concentrate on something that may be of importance to your work. Just don’t forget that you need to get outdoors for some fresh air as and when you can too.
Use activity and revision resources to keep children occupied
There will be times throughout the day where you may need to have a quiet space in order to have online conference meetings without any disturbances.
This can be a good time for children to get stuck into some learning activities and revision. This could be from your child’s official school curriculum that their teachers have provided, an activity book or online learning resources.
Whichever it may be, let your child know that you are about to go on to an important call and that you cannot be disturbed. For younger children, you could give this time a nickname so that your child knows when you are not to be disturbed and that they are to do some sort of learning activity on their own for an hour or so.
You’re not alone
Whilst it may feel hard to begin with, remember that you’re not alone in this challenging time.
If you live with a partner who is also working from home, take it in turns to do the homeschooling in order for you to both get some work done.
If you have a colleague from work who you know is in the same position as you, contact them to see how they’re getting on and ask each other for advice. Or if you know a colleague who is working from home but hasn’t got children, ask if they can help you out slightly with a project you are struggling to get done.
With everything up in the air and no real direction as to where things are heading, it’s important to for us to stay optimistic and do everything we can in order to carry on with a lifestyle which is as normal as we can possibly make it whilst facilitating continuity in both work and education.
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