Current challenges

How parents can effectively work from home over half-term

February 16, 2021

Editors note: I may not be a parent yet, but what I can say is I honestly don’t know how parents are coping during lockdown. Working from home while also caring for children while they are off school must be so tiring! So, I asked my friend Abi to come up with a blog post to help out the unsung heroes out there. I hope it helps!

– Kate Thomson

Many of us were accustomed to the routine of working in an office environment, and since Spring 2020 have had to adjust to working from home. Setting up home offices has made childcare a challenge due to the covid-19 pandemic.

With England in its third lockdown many families still find it difficult to juggle between work and a hectic family life at the same time. But what can you as a parent do to avoid the stress of having to juggle between responsibilities? Here are a few tips to effectively work from home over the February half-term.

Set up a routine

Both children and adults thrive on routines, so it is important to set up a routine to have a structure throughout the week. Author of 40 quick, fun and easy activities to do at home, and parenting blogger of ‘The Dad Lab’ Sergei Urban advises that there is no reason for the routine to be too sophisticated. It can be as simple as setting specific times for work and family time.

Communicate with your partner

It is important to share and discuss your workload with your partner if you live in a two-parent household. This allows you to interchange between working from home and taking care of your children, discovering which days work best for you both.

Make technology your friend

It is important to remember that there might be times that you may be struggling to engage your child in an art and craft activity during a busy workday.

 You should consider how you can engage your child by using different educational and fun apps, games, and TV shows and getting the most out of technology.

Less is more

When you are working from home, as well as trying to help your child with home-schooling, it is worth reflecting on how your child would spend their time at school. Take into consideration that a teacher works with 20 children, rather than just one. The time it takes to conduct a math session for a class of 20 is much more compared with teaching only one child.

Keep doing the basic things: make time for reading and spend an hour on outdoor activities if you can. Any time you start to feel the pressures of home schooling over the half term, just remember that you are doing all you can.

Work-life balance

It can be easy for your work life to seep into your home life. The key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and deriving a greater sense of enjoyment from parenting is to master the art of work-life balance. We are all doing the best we can in the current circumstances. Remind yourself that what you are doing is good enough for now. And don’t forget to make time for yourself too!

Co-authored by Kate Thomson and Abhishek Majumdar