3 Ways to Stay Productive While Working From Home With Kids

If you are working from home with children, juggling nap times, mealtimes, and your kids’ educational requirements with your work schedule can be daunting. The First Baptist Church Groveport would like to help by offering these three tips for staying productive and maintaining your calm demeanor, all while simultaneously working from home and parenting your kids.

  1. Implement a Daily Routine

As The Military Wife and Mom notes, kids need the predictability of a daily routine to stay focused and calm—and adults do too. It can be tempting to throw caution to the wind and allow unlimited free time, especially closer to the end of the week, but this lack of structure may make your whole family feel more stressed and leave kids reaching for you all day long. Factor in work time, playtime, and family time to build relationships into your daily routine. You will need to set real “work” hours that can only be canceled if there is an emergency.

Consider holding a family meeting on the weekend to discuss with your partner and children how you will handle the next week. For young children, you and your spouse can trade childcare responsibilities with a partner to lighten your burden, and consider switching up kids’ toys throughout the work week so they have something to look forward to every day. Older children may be able to better self-regulate and work or play independently as long as they have set meal times and bedtimes.

  1. Share Educational Endeavors With Your Partner

Even if your kids are too young for formal homeschooling, they will need attention and one-on-one time with you. Reading to toddlers and even babies helps with their literacy as well as language development. Discuss with your spouse how you will handle the school, or “learning” portion of the day, and divide it accordingly.

You may choose to divide the work according to your children’s needs: if your 10-year-old daughter needs help completing virtual assignments while your three-year-old son wants to play outside, each partner assisting one child may work better. If you are a single parent with multiple kids, discuss with your children that they will need to take turns with you. Remember, though, always create a schedule the day before for consistency, as well as for the much-needed structure discussed above.

Many families find a command center comes in handy, since everyone can tell at a glance what is expected of them. You can use a chalkboard calendar for the starring role in your command center, color code days or family members for clarity, and for smaller children, consider some magnets as understandable visual aids.

  1. Utilize Screen Time Appropriately

There will be days when you feel like you can’t get anything done because of your children’s demands for your attention. If you have toddlers or younger children who have not gained independent play skills for more than a few minutes at a time, utilize educational screen time while you complete tasks that cannot be interrupted, such as video chats, phone calls, and important meetings with clients.

Kids can glean a lot from computers these days, but parental controls and cybersecurity are critical. You also need to provide a reliable computer that’s capable of running their educational videos and games. Thankfully, families can avoid overspending on gadgetry and software by searching out deals online.

Working from home can provide a wonderful way to be present for your children while contributing to the income of your family, but sometimes it can be difficult to juggle everyone’s needs. Consider trading childcare responsibilities with members of your church or community in addition to your partner to give yourself a much-needed break. Remember to be kind to yourself, explain the situation to your children, and provide structure to set the family up for success.

Connect with First Baptist Church Groveport for more guidance, inspiration, support, and for opportunities for worship.

Addressing Back-to-School COVID-19 Concerns: Resources for Parents

If your child will be heading back to school in-person this year, you may be worried that your family will be exposed to COVID-19. Alternatively, if your child’s school district is moving forward with remote education, you might be wondering how you can help your child learn effectively online. As families prepare for this new school year, these resources will help you and your child get ready for either remote or in-person education.

Stock Up on Supplies

To keep your child safe at school, you’ll need to budget for these essential supplies.

  • Buy or make several cloth face masks for your child to bring to school.
  • Pack hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol in your child’s backpack.
  • Purchase the all-natural ingredients you’ll need for effective DIY cleaning solutions.

Virtual Learning Resources

If your child will be attending school online, these resources will help them make the most of remote learning.

  • If you have any questions about the curriculum, communicate with your child’s teacher.
  • Follow these helpful remote learning tips to help your child focus on their assignments.
  • Attend virtual religious services through First Baptist Church Groveport to support your family’s mental and spiritual wellbeing.

Cleaning Routine

Whether your child will be attending school in person or online, you’ll need to commit to strict cleaning regimens to protect your family this fall.

  • Wash your child’s clothes carefully on the warmest water setting to eliminate COVID-19.
  • Establish a cleaning routine with “green” products to avoid contact with harsh chemicals.
  • When your child returns home from any activity, clean their mask immediately.
  • Don’t forget to clean and disinfect these overlooked corners of your home!

As a parent, there’s a good chance you’ve spent the summer thinking about how you can best support your child’s education this fall. Whether your youngster will be heading back to the school campus or logging on for distance learning, you will play a very important role. From keeping your home safe and clean to touching base with your child’s teacher, these resources will help you navigate the entire process.

Fun Online Activities to Help Battle Rainy-Day Blues

Spring and summer provide children with lots of opportunities for exercise and enriching outdoor activities. When the weather is bad outside, many kids will stumble back inside and grab the nearest device to play games or fiddle around on social media, or slump in front of a TV or gaming console to waste away the day. The next time rain sends your kids inside, try kick-starting their physical health and enlightening their minds. They still get to use their devices, but you can steer their navigation to fun and educational content.

Prepare a Healthy Dish

When your kids get hungry, use this opportunity to teach them to cook. Making a healthy meal together doesn’t have to be overwhelming; all you have to do is enter a few search terms to find an easy recipe that your children can help with. Choose one that’s nutritious, but if you can, also make it fun. Using cookie cutters and naming the dish after your kids can spark enjoyment and make them want to spend more time in the kitchen.

Educating your children about healthy food shouldn’t stop at mealtime. When it comes to snacks, you can find a ton of ideas for healthier alternatives online. For example, while popcorn is a fun option for your kids to learn to cook, this popular snack can be made healthier in a popper instead of its original bag. Before buying a popper, read an online guide that compares the best ones.

Get Moving… Indoors

There are countless outlets online for exercising and adding physical fitness to your day. Apple TV has its App Store full of workout routines, classes, and bootcamps, and some are aimed toward younger participants. There are also yoga classes and tai chi as well. Much of this content is premium, meaning that there may be a monthly charge for access, but those that are paid typically have higher-quality content, including professional coaches and varied levels.

YouTube is also filled with numerous options. Since YouTube is free, you will either have to endure some ads to access content or deal with lower-quality videos. You may have to search around to find the best videos for your kids, but with some scouring, you can find something that will motivate any child to get moving.

If your kids aren’t into workout videos, try to get them moving with dance. From music videos to dance-offs, there are many choices that will keep them moving and off the couch. If you are concerned about content, try searching for radio edit versions of their favorite songs or steer toward family-friendly YouTube channels.

YouTube Is Tailor-Made for Music and Art Lessons

Music not only motivates people to move, it is also a medium for enlightening and teaching. Many families have a cheap keyboard, ukulele, or guitar lying around. Use these old toys as sources for new education by watching music lesson videos. Challenge your children to learn songs, then play together as a band for a rainy-day concert. Music education is proven to help children excel in learning, and produces more well-rounded and appreciative students.

If music isn’t up your kids’ alley, try using online sources for art education. YouTube is full of drawing and painting tutorials. Regardless of the subject matter, your children will be able to find someone on the internet showing a step-by-step process of how it’s drawn.

Learn Science While Having Fun

You can also slip in some learning opportunities in core school subjects, especially science. Many websites feature fun family science activities in which kids can make scientific messes in your kitchen on a rainy day. Many middle schoolers are infatuated with DIY crafts and art projects that incorporate science, such as the slime-making trend. Enjoy a slime tutorial day and try to point out the science behind the slippery stuff.

The next time the sun hides behind the clouds and rain keeps your kids indoors, seize the opportunity to infuse your kids’ day with some fun and learning.