In March, my family, like many others, were thrown full throttle into homeschooling or helping their children with virtual learning. All while simultaneously working from home. It wasn’t easy but we pulled through. And now, with the first day of school looming here in New York – September 8th for my daughter – parents are now faced with the decision of distance learning or in school learning. It isn’t an easy decision to make. We all want our children to have a traditional education, as well as be safe while doing so. This is why many are choosing virtual learning for the 2020/2021 school year. Our family is among that group.
Related: 17 Virtual Playdate Ideas to Help Kids Have Fun with Friends at a Distance
While the concept of homeschooling and distance learning is not new, due to the pandemic, it is on the rise. Statistical data indicates that more parents are opting for this form of education for their children. In fact, if you speak to experts they will tell you that the number of parents opting to homeschool their children has increased by 50% in the last two decades. The pandemic has increased the number of parents wanting to keep their children home and safe. However, there are many families, mine included, that work full-time, which can make homeschooling or virtual learning an almost impossible task. But does it have to be?
Below I share tips for working from home while homeschooling or distance learning
Plan ahead to create some semblance of balance
With a busy work schedule, it may seem impossible to help your children with their schoolwork while they’re distance learning. However, I’ve found that planning ahead and making a schedule helps.
- Sticking to your normal daily routine is helpful
- Our daughter’s school had scheduled teaching sessions in which she had to participate. I did my best to schedule meetings during those times when I knew she would be busy.
Use the Weekends and Evenings
As a working mom or dad, you will have to allocate time for official work from Monday to Friday. As much as you may not want to, you may have to sacrifice your evenings and weekends. Use your evenings to review your child’s work and answer any questions they may have regarding what they’re learning. Anything that you are unable to answer should be shared with their teacher so that it can be addressed the next day.
Getting Child Care May Help
For parents who work full time and choose to homeschool their child (or virtual education), it may be a good idea to hire someone for child care. This will allow you to completely focus on your work while your child remains focused on school.
Now, I know that finding childcare is tough, especially during a pandemic. If you go this route make sure of the following:
- Begin your search early
- Make sure it is someone you trust
- Make sure the person has quarantined and isn’t positive for the virus
Set Your Pace
Although working from home while homeschooling can be stressful, as long as you plan ahead, have a schedule that works for you and your family, things should work out smoothly. It did for us for the three months (March through June) when we were thrown into it.
To help make things a bit easier for you, I’m sharing this free homeschooling planner printable.
This homeschooling schedule includes the following:
- Goals sheet
- Grade tracker sheet
- Activity calendar
- Idea board