By now you may have had some experience of home learning and working during our COVID-19 stay-cation! Here’s our best tips on how to ‘combo’ this new work, school and home balance.
- Kōrero with the kids: You may have already done this, but make sure your kids are aware of the situation – that there’s a need to stay home but we still have to get school and work done. From here sort your plan on how you might support each other with this.
- Together with your kids use our DIY planner to make a sketchy guide: Schedule in the times your family will be together doing school things, and have a really good think about when you may schedule work things – early mornings can be a terrific time for emails or work requiring more concentration.
- Make it clear that you’re attempting a work, school and home balance! Let your colleagues and clients know your situation, e.g. "I’m working from home, please bear with me as I also have two children learning from home and a persistent cat who likes to sit on my keyboard." This ‘realness’ and ‘honesty’ really helps everyone be able to be 'real' and honest too. Adapt your work schedule slowly as you adjust to the new circumstances – but during home learning time, put the phone and laptop away. Make this consistent, even for just a few hours a day.
- Set your kids up! Encourage your children's independence in this by ensuring they have a space to do the learning set by their teacher, and can access the things they need. Also set up a healthy snack box or ‘place’ each day so that they can grab food when they need it. Much like you (or they) would make their lunch each day.
- Watch your work hours… It’s easy to do extra when working from home. Stick to your regular hours – in fact stick to your regular routines for your kids (same bed and waking times as school), and for you. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep too.
- It's not gonna be perfect! We're not in our work environments, set up for us to be productive and efficient... so we just gotta be okay with winging it, for now. We're doing the best in the circumstances.
- Get outside everyday! Nature is good for us – even stepping out in the fresh air in our backyards and gardens can make a difference. And we can still go for walks around the block too.
- Connect everyday with someone you really, really enjoy! Stay connected by phone or online with mates and whānau outside your home. It can be good to let off steam with others! Make sure your kids are connecting with their mates in the same way too.
- Look after your wellbeing: And we have plenty of tips on this here at our All Right? website.
- Create some new family traditions: This is a great time to think about some new positive family habits or traditions you want to adopt. These might include: a gratitude round at mealtimes (I’m thankful for … today because…), stories at bedtime or sitting to eat at the table together. As a family, you can choose and start these now.
Keen for a printable sheet of family-friendly ideas? Check out our wellbeing activities for the whānau to stay grounded and feeling good.