When it comes to working from home with children, it’s not always smooth sailing.
To keep your productivity up and stress levels down while working from home with children, we’ve compiled some essential strategies to try while you’re finding the best way to work from home with children. Be patient with yourself and children while we all adjust and test out these tips to see what works for you.
Timetable each day
Children thrive on routine, especially if they are used to attending early childhood education or school. A well-planned schedule can help everyone know what is expected of them at each stage of the day, and enable you to carve out work time while children are busy with their own tasks. Make a timetable to display that is clear and fun, using images for children who cannot yet read. It can be helpful to pre-make lunches and snacks to save time and enable children to be more self-sufficient.
Focus on physical movement
Incorporating physical activity into your day means everyone will feel happier, more settled and sleep better. Children love to move, so start the day with exercise to get everyone feeling good. Head outdoors for bike riding, a walk around the block or jumping on the trampoline. Indoors you can use children’s exercise videos on YouTube such as Cosmic Kids Yoga or Joe the PE Teacher.
Communicate your situation
Children are unpredictable. Make sure your employer, colleagues or clients know that you have children at home with you and that you’re doing your best. Communicating openly and honestly about the challenges of working from home with children can minimise the stress experienced when things don’t quite go to plan.
Screen time and online education
It’s no secret that screen time can be a useful tool for entertaining children, so don’t feel bad if you need to use screen time more than usual. Whether it’s television, tablets or computers, try to provide high quality, educational experiences through most of your screen time.
Early mornings or late nights
If you’re working on a task that requires your undivided attention, you may need to utilise the time that your children are sleeping. This is especially true if you have younger children who can be harder to occupy for longer periods of time. Getting up early in the morning while children are still asleep can be a productive time to work from home. Start your morning peacefully with a quiet house and get your work done before the house comes to life! Alternatively, working in the evening is better suited to some people and can offer many hours of uninterrupted work time.
Get children involved
Children love to copy mum and dad, and they also like to be involved. Set up your children’s work station nearby to you and see if working side by side can be effective for you. If possible, let your child sit in on an informal work video call or give them a task to “help” you at work.
Try to enjoy this time together
While there is sure to be some hectic juggling at times, try to allow yourself the time to enjoy being at home together and working as a team. This won’t be forever and hopefully we can make some special memories to look back on in the months and years to come.
For more fun activities for children to try while at home, check out our activities page for inspiration and free downloads!
Practical Outcomes is dedicated to supporting our learners and early childhood education clients. For more information, contact us today or check out our courses here.