3 Tips for Work- and Learn-from-Home Balance This School Year

3 Tips for Work- and Learn-from-Home Balance This School Year

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Remote work has its challenges. But combine telecommuting with virtual learning, and you have a recipe for family chaos. Fortunately, there are significant ways parents can adapt to the new normal. Here are three smart tips to help parents prep for distance learning and working from home.

Give Your Workspace Attention

For many remote workers, the key to a successful workday is a calm and quiet space that fits your needs. The same applies to kids who are attending class virtually; quiet time can help kids grow mentally and emotionally at any age, confirms Outschool. With parents and kids at home all day, though, household real estate comes at a premium. Consider overhauling your family’s work areas in advance of the return of remote learning. Creating an office in a separate area of the home might work best for you. Or, a co-working space could do the trick – especially if your kids need parental oversight while heading online.

Getting organized can be tricky. But keeping messes to a minimum is a must for working and learning at home. Start by calling on a professional cleaning service to give your home a deep cleaning. iEcoCleaning has a reputation for excellence, can keep your home sparkling and beautiful, and uses eco-friendly products. Once the cleaning is completed, ditch household clutter and establish a more minimalist workspace. For offices, playrooms, or any other area that needs significant organizational overhaul, consider upgrading up your built-in storage space.

Make Productivity a Family Goal

Keeping your household running smoothly is a tall order in any back-to-school season. But when the whole family is staying home for work and school, it pays to prepare in advance.

Consider implementing a family schedule well before the first day of school. Creating a morning routine, establishing boundaries (especially when you’re on video calls), and batching essential tasks are great ways for parents to stay industrious. Kids can also benefit from more structure and a solid routine with both their school days and off-hours.

Keep in mind that the transition to distance learning can be frustrating for kids, too. To prevent overwhelm, try organizational strategies like breaking kids’ tasks down into chunks or creating daily checklists. Maintaining focus during the school day may also require adaptations. For example, many kids will need breaks to move around and get their wiggles out. Taking breaks is an essential part of their day – and yours.

Healthy screen time boundaries can also help your household remain productive. Making kids the leaders on screen time helps them learn to self-regulate, notes EdSurge, though handing over this responsibility takes time. Plus, balance in your daily activities can help leave everyone less frazzled. Incorporating outside time (you can even call it recess) may also be a lifesaver on days when your kids (and you) are particularly stressed.

Choose the Right Equipment

Gone are the days when working from home meant answering emails on the fly from your smartphone. These days, you and your kids need more tools and equipment to get things done.

For work-from-home parents with virtual learners in the household, speedy internet is a priority. Before the school year starts, shop around for the best options in your area. Especially if it’s been a while since you upgraded, service options can vary. Now is also the time to take steps to protect your computers and devices. Install anti-virus software and back up all your files on an external hard drive or in the cloud.  

Of course, lighting-fast internet isn’t the only equipment you’ll need. Think about your work responsibilities and what tools may help you reach your goals. For example, if you frequently chat face-to-face with clients or staff, buying a designated webcam can upgrade your video conference quality. Be sure to factor in cost and features like resolution, microphone quality, and overall reviews when shopping for a webcam.

Maintaining balance in your household can be a struggle, especially with parents and kids heading online for work and school. Achieving true harmony may be impossible, especially as the year goes on. But these three tips can help smooth over the seasonal rush and equip you for a productive and rewarding return to school at home.

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