“Our kids were off school yesterday both with dry coughs, therefore we are in self-isolation for the near future from today. The reality of home schooling whilst trying to keep on working is very daunting indeed”, explains Jonathan Ratcliffe of Offices.co.uk
Working from home is tough. Home schooling is very tough. So, if you must combine the two for a long period of time, how are you going to cope?
You are going to have to plan well, get organised and work to a strict timetable if you want to get everything done. Equally, you’ll need to have a proper split between work, school, fun and rest.
“The first thing you need to do is lower your expectations of what you are going to achieve, both with work and schooling. If you try to do too much the experience is going to be highly stressful”, Ratcliffe adds.
Here are a few tips on how to survive:
START EARLY AT THE SAME TIME EACH DAY: Routine is important for good sleep and mental health, for both you and your kids.
GET DRESSED PROPERLY LIKE TEACHER AND STUDENT: Getting showered and dressed is important to divide sleep and school.
CREATE SPACES FOR DIFFERENT ACTVITIES: You might set up a teaching room (kitchen), quiet room (spare bedroom) and a play area (living room).
STRUCTURE YOUR DAY LIKE A SCHOOL DAY: Teaching time, activity time, play time and lunch time – just like their normal school routine.
MAKE A PLAN WITH YOUR KIDS: At the start of the day, ask them what they want to do (within reason) so they feel involved.
SET ASIDE BREAKS FOR TV, IPAD AND EXERCISE: Use these times to schedule work emails or calls.
TAKE EXERCISE: Depending on where you live, if you have a garden or not – try and get some fresh air, this also allows you some headspace.
FINISH AT A SET TIME, BEDTIME AT A SET TIME: By getting a routine drilled in early on, you can try and get the kids to sleep at a sensible time, thereby giving yourself some space to work if needed.
“We are in unchartered territory here and no one knows what life will look like at the end. It’s important to realise that time with your kids is a gift, don’t try and do too much – hopefully we can all stay relatively positive through this difficult time”, concludes Ratcliffe.