Studying while you have children can be hard, but there are things that you can do to make your study/home life balance easier. Here are my top 5 tips on studying at home with children.
1. Start Your Day Early:
Setting your alarm and getting up for the day earlier than anyone else in your household will give you a good head start. This alone time in the morning will be great for you to focus on the information you are obtaining, interpreting this material and applying it to your studies. You will be fresh minded and 100% committed and attentive to learning new concepts and this will
not impact your time with your children. If you can set aside even just 30-60 minutes most mornings, to give your undivided mind-power to your studies before anyone else is awake, you will progress through your studies with ease and without the added stress of balancing your children and your studies at the same time.
2. Have A Schedule:
A schedule will allow you to make time for your studies and complete your other daily tasks without the feeling of pressure or being overwhelmed. If you can set yourself up with a solid schedule that works, and prepare time for your work life, your home duties and your children, you will find that you can fit into your schedule, ample time to focus on your studies. The most important thing here is to follow your schedule so that what you set out to do, can be completed and you won’t feel stressed or rushed. If your schedule doesn’t work for you, all you need to do is reconsider your plan and re-strategise so that it can work for you.
3. Be Organised:
Being organised can help you remain on path to completing your studies. Draw up and structure a schedule, and from here it will allow your to be organized as you know what you need to do and when. Understand the course that you are completing and have a time-line of what you would like to achieve in what time frame. Collect everything you think you will need to make your studying easier and keep all your information in one place so that it is easy to find. Explain what you hope to achieve to your family and set them up with the knowledge that you will be studying at certain times so they can cooperate.
4. Teach Independent Play:
No matter the age of your children, you can work on guiding them to plan independently. If your children are able to play on their own, or together if you have more than one, you will find that you will be able to set even just 30 minutes aside to focus on your study. You can be near your children, of course, but if they understand and are able to play on their own while you get focus temporarily on your studies, this will be much easier on everyone. Your children are must less likely to become upset or frustrated that you are not engaging in them and will be able to focus on their independently play time while you push through a little more of your studies
5. Work on Sleep:
If your children aren’t the best sleepers, it will be very beneficial if you can work on their sleep as this will allow more time in your schedule to focus on your studies. Depending on the age of your child, if they are still napping, but not napping well, establishing a solid nap and guiding your child to self-settling will allow you that extra time you need to allow time for studying. Also, an age appropriate bedtime and the ability to self-settle will give you more time at night. With this extra time, you can focus on the other chores that you have to do around the home, and in turn, this will free you up quicker to then focus on your studies. If your child knows how to sleep well, and can do so independently after a wind-down routine, this will make balancing your work/home/study life much easier.
Shereen is a Director and Lecturer at the Institute of Parenting Support Services and Director and Senior Educator at Early Childhood Parenting. She practices in Adelaide, South Australia. She is the mother of two beautiful children. You can reach her at 0419820474 or email@example.com