There’s a recent shift in families moving to online public school or other families even considering homeschool when one or both parents are still working. It’s completely possible. I personally work online which is like teleworking and my husband has a full-time job that he sometimes goes to and sometimes teleworks.
Therefore, we teach our kids even while we have work to get done!
How to juggle telework and homeschool
It can be a challenge, but it’s completely possible to work, even outside the home, and still help your child work through their curriculum. I know of even families that have accomplished this with full-time jobs at a desk and then come home to teach their children. Don’t be intimidated, just be inspired to think creatively. Sometimes a group a parents will form a small day-play group and then parents teach their own kids at night. Sometimes it’s a joint effort on both parts and they rotate which day a parent has off to watch all of the other children.
Regardless of how you figure out logistics for that, there are a few key ways to make learning happen in a meaningful and fun way without getting too overwhelmed.
Utilize your online resources
Make sure you grab your library card, update your account, or renew your number in advance of the libraries being closed and then sign into hoopla or Over Drive to access audiobooks for free through your library.
Youtube, Curiosity Stream, and so many other websites have a huge assortment of videos. Even Cosmic Kids Yoga gets them active while going through a story. Or if you have to work on your own computer, then you could find books that are read aloud by someone else. There are seriously endless options to help keep your kids’ engaged in learning material and on-task while you get work done. We prefer services like Curiosity Stream because we don’t have to worry about inappropriate ads.
Forget the Traditional Schedule
This is two-fold. And if you’re used to a normal school schedule, it can be hard to wrap your mind around.
You don’t have to actually keep a child at the table for 6 or 7 hours. You also don’t have to work during the exact school hours.
This means work on fractions while cooking and baking. It means Go to your regular job and do school in the evening. It means take work with you on a picnic or a hike. It means you can let kids play and not be overwhelmed by sitting in the same place all day.
Whether you’re trying to homeschool, are doing online school, or other, remember that kids in a classroom have lunch, recess, and breaks. So follow their need.
Use every-day tasks as a way to explain concepts
The special aspect of learning at home is that even if your child needs to complete a worksheet say… on fractions, you can get into the kitchen and cook and bake to demonstrate the math. And they write it down while they’re cooking.
We watch Jack Hartmann Videos on youtube to practice a while variety of things like letter sounds, multiplication, and more.
Make it fun
Online school or homeschool can also incorporate games. Learning spelling? There are games to practice that. Want to study virology or chemistry, games for those too.
You can have lots of fun playing even really fun “non educational” games that foster education.
A couple of years ago, I started another site called Board Games for Learning. Check it out for even more ideas in this department!
Spend time outside
Even if it’s cold, bundle up. The benefits of outdoor play are numerous. And if you can put up a table where kids play for twenty minutes, work for another twenty, and so on… the day will go by in a flash!
In fact, grab some of our favorite outdoor toys and games to make it even more fun and meaningful.
It’s also great to really explore nature and understand science in a whole new way!
Connect with your child’s real needs and concerns.
You’ll start to see tears form over subjects that are hard because they’re not just working on it in school, they’re working on it in their safe place. Take time to talk about it and address their needs in a loving and meaningful way.
Go on field trips
You can go outdoors to nature centers, visit local landmarks, and more. This is all of course outside of doing museums, aquariums, and hands-on science centers. The nice thing about getting out to visit nature or go on a drive where you drive through a historic area is that you can also sneak in audiobooks.
Whether you’re using online public school, new to homeschooling, I have two different resources that might help along the way! See them below.
Want to implement game and reading nights to connect as a family?
Research shows that read allow time has great benefits for kids of all ages and so does engaging in game play. (No, not video games, board games!) Grab our free download of discussion questions and the benefits of reading together.
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Kara is an author and advocate for positive, grace-filled parenting. She is homeschooler to her 4 children living in Boston, MA and believes in creative educational approaches to help kids dive deeper into a rich learning experience. She has her degree in Secondary Education & Adolescent Childhood Development and is passionate about connecting with and helping other parents on their journey to raise awesome kids!