The spread of the Coronavirus has forced thousands of working parents to work from home WITH KIDS! My best friend mentioned she was unsure how she would manage it. This is a relevant issue affecting so many of us. Managing working from home, with children who need to be homeschooled can be overwhelming. Kids, especially younger kids, demand around the clock attention.
1. Mindset is key
Be Kind to yourself
You’re going to have wobbles during this experience. After all, humans are not built to be in close confines without the ability to socialise! Add in working from home while homeschooling the children. ahhhh! Expect extra emotion and acting up, (from the kids too.) This is not normal, this is an unknown, scary and huge change. They will miss their friends as much as you will. With routines disrupted and families thrown into close quarters, cabin fever is a real danger.
Aim to eradicate your fear!
2. Dedicate an office area
You need a designated place for your home office, so all family members are aware it’s your office. Even If it is on the kitchen table. At specific designated times, they have to respect this is your workspace and not disturb you while you’re sat at it. unless it’s an emergency or urgent.
Avoid OH&S issues, keep it as ergonomic as possible. Create a makeshift foot stool. Or use a box to get the height of the computer correct. Ensure Wi-fi is fast enough. The lighting needs to be sufficient. A headset and a printer/scanner is a nice to have also.
3. Create a schedule/routine but be flexible.
Work Smart Not Hard
Allocate some quiet time for you all throughout the day. If possible, create spaces in your house for zones. A games zone, learning space (with some activities set out). A chill out corner with pillows and headphones. If it’s too small for this, then stick with the boredom box (see below) and bedrooms when people need alone time.
4. This is not normal homeschooling and you’re not a school teacher!
Sandy shares with us her 3 top tips for our temporary home schooling/ home working gig:
1. You don’t have to do every subject every day.
2. Have shorter blocks of work, nothing more than 30mins, with numerous “brain breaks” (5-10mins).Even though, at school, they’re in the classroom for an hour or more in between starting/recess/lunch/home. They actually fit in numerous short blocks of work. There’s lots of ‘teacher talk’ and moving around between the floor and desks. A fantastic website for “brain breaks” is GoNoodle.
3. It’s super important to connect what they’re learning with real life. Talk about things. Let the kids ask questions. Tell them stories and experiences. Play with them, go outside and let them explore the natural world. ALL of this actually ticks off SO much of the curriculum, without even realising it.
5. Create Age Appropriate Boredom Box’s
6. Use Screen Time and Virtual Support Networks.
7. Fill Your Bucket, and Invest Time Filling Up their Buckets Too