One semester down, another to go. Everyone has been adapting to working and schooling from home, but it’s still not easy. We talked to a few parents about tips to help them stay sane and what they’re going to continue to do for the rest of this pandemic school year.

On Running the Home

  • Meal prep lunches on the weekend, your Monday self will thank you.
  • Practice good communication between parents on when live things are happening.
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On “Playing Teacher”

  • Have a set station for academic classes, but let them pick where they want to take specials so they can mix up the scenery. Even adults have a hard time being at a single spot all day.
  • Add their breaks to your work calendar so you can clearly see if there’s an important meeting that overlaps with a break time or music class.
  • Don’t hover for the older kids but do make sure you have “check-ins” scheduled throughout the week to make sure they aren’t missing a lot of assignments. Don’t wait until the teacher reaches out, that will overwhelm everyone.
  • Some teachers send home a suggested schedule. It’s exactly that, a suggestion. The only things that need to be at a specific time are the live class times. The rest can be done at any time. But schedule when the kids are going to work on the assignments—set timers.

On Taking Breaks

  1. Let your kid take breaks how THEY want (it’s their mental health – not yours).
  2. Even though it’s cold, get the kid outside for some sort of exercise (build a snow fort, go for a walk, etc).
  3. Be sure to take your own breaks (even if for a 5 minute “walk” around the house.
  4. It makes such a big difference to the day if we have a chance to get out and get a change of scenery.
  5. Schedule EVERYTHING! Give yourself breaks, and give the kids breaks, play breaks, hobby breaks, movement breaks, time with mom breaks, mental health breaks.

On Mental Health

  • Remember that ‘being behind’ is a social construct. If they are learning, are happy, are curious, are engaged…those are all wonderful things
  • Take time to learn something new or explore a new interest
  • Give yourself permission not to be good at all of the things at once.
  • Self-care is the number one importance. If you do not take care of yourself first then all else will fall behind and not get your fullest. Having a therapist is helpful in carving out that time.
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On Connecting With Each Other

  • Don’t talk negatively about remote schooling in front of them – only highlight the positives. You’ll be surprised how much they model YOUR attitude toward the situation.
  • Set clear boundaries between working time and kid time so you can give them your full attention when it’s their turn.

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