Top Ten Homeschooling Tips for the Working Parent

Many parents turned towards homeschooling in order to minimize exposure and risk, but being thrown into it with little time to prepare has led to them feeling anxious and worried that they aren’t doing enough. Not everyone has the privilege of dedicating all their time to homeschool their children and ensure they’re on task throughout the school day. All the tips and tricks that have been circulating the internet about homeschooling may not be working anymore, but there may be a few more that you haven’t tried out yet. Keep reading to check them out!

  1. Work Spaces

By ensuring the work space is only a work space, kids are able to “get in the zone” and are able to focus more easily on their tasks. But it wouldn’t hurt to switch up the learning area. 

  • Perhaps a change of environment is needed for kids to overcome fatigue and the feeling of being burnt out.  
  • Rearranging the room layout so that it looks visually different would get your kid excited.

  1. Realistic Expectations

Something to always remember is that these times are difficult. Today may not look like tomorrow and that is okay! Your child may get all of their work one day but the next day they could need help focusing on their work again. Sometimes at work, things don’t go as planned and can interfere with your plans. Taking it one day at a time is important to remember. You can always edit your to do list to match what the day is looking like for you. The list of tasks don’t always have to reflect the same level of difficulty as each other. Sometimes, making sure that everyone makes their bed can be enough for a day.

  1. Connecting with Peers

As isolated as you feel, your child probably feels just as alone. Interactions with people their own age is just as important as that science worksheet. 

  • Set up movie nights with their friends
  • Play charades over a zoom call with friend
  • The same is important for parents as well. Make sure to set aside time during the week to catch up with a friend and talk about things that don’t necessarily have to be about work or school. Or sometimes it would help to unload stress and ask your friends for tips and tricks as well if they’re in similar situations.
  1. Shake Up Your Routine

Perhaps keeping one routine would ensure stability and consistency, but maybe it isn’t working. As much as consistency is important, leniency is also crucial. Maybe lessons can be taught in the evenings after work, while the kids do homework and independent work during the daytime. It assures you that they have something to work on, and that they are not waiting for you to check in to teach a new concept. If your current routine isn’t working, don’t be afraid to change it!

  1. Mini Projects

Constantly focusing on work can be a drag and can be quite exhausting. Creating mini projects that are not necessarily academic related would have your kid excited and focused on their work. It gives them a goal and something of their own to look forward to, during a time where they don’t have the luxury of participating in their pre-COVID activities. These projects can be:

  • Writing stories
  • Building a complex fort
  • Creating snacks from available materials
  • Painting

It would be even better if they choose their own projects. It also serves as an incentive to complete work so that they can move on to these activities they enjoy.

  1. Virtual Take-Your-Kid-To-Work-Day

If you work from home, perhaps your kids can join you and watch you in action at work. They can watch you as you flourish in your work settings. It would be a change of pace as they get to also learn about new careers. Perhaps you could set up a meeting with a coworker and get them to talk to your kids about what a typical day at work looks like for them. For kids in high school, this could be extremely beneficial as they start thinking about post secondary. 

  1. Meal Prep? Lesson Prep!

We’ve all heard of meal prepping, but what about lesson prepping? Creating a skeleton subject material you’d like to cover throughout the week can take a load off of you every night. This way, you would have something to quickly look over and there wouldn’t be a need to set aside time every single night to prepare a set of work for your children to do the next day. It would help working parents to feel less anxious, and one task off of their long list of chores to do.

  1. Extracurriculars

Just because we’re online, doesn’t mean that extracurriculars have to stop! Virtual activities can be things like:

  • Joining organizations and clubs such as Girl/Boy Scouts
  • Baking
  • Music classes
  • Dance
  • Language learning

This would be a great way for kids to interact with and create new friends. Volunteering for organizations is also possible now since many of them have moved online and have virtual programs in place. 

It is definitely a difficult task to take on with all that is going on in the world right now. Hopefully these tips will help parents and students glide through homeschooling. Good luck!