Tips for Working From Home With Kids
Working from Home with Kids
2. Set up an office space
When you telecommute, having a dedicated office space in your home can help you separate home life from work life. This is especially true when you work from home with kids. If possible, try to find a quiet place in your home where you can sit down with your work materials and concentrate. Some parents get creative with this concept, seeking spots inside bedroom closets or next to washers and dryers the laundry room. Do what works best for you! If your space doesn’t allow you to get away from the noise, consider investing in a pair of noise-cancelling headphones, which can help block out the noise of cartoons and other shenanigans. Keep in mind that a dedicated office helps your kids as much as it helps you. Understanding that office mommy or daddy is different from regular mommy or daddy is hard for kids to conceptualize—a separate space for office work might help them grasp the difference.
3. Communicate with coworkers
Working from home with children can be tough, but you don’t have to be in it alone. Ask a spouse or other caregiver for help when you need to, and in addition, talk to your coworkers about what is going on. Taking care of kids might mean that your hours are no longer strictly from 9-5, and that’s okay. Talk to your boss about your priorities, and try to work out a new schedule together. Do your little ones like to crash your Zoom calls? Don’t worry! It happens. Have your child give everyone a quick wave, before ushering them off in the other direction. Regardless of whether or not your colleagues are parents, they understand that working from home with kids can be unpredictable. Just do your best to communicate with coworkers about any challenges you’re facing, and find ways to navigate the situation as a team.
4. Keep your kids entertained
As most parents know, keeping kids entertained is sometimes easier said than done. However, any fun activities you can plan ahead of time may help make your day a little easier. For younger children, you might want to keep the toy collection nearby for impromptu playtime. If your kids are older, schedule time for reading or chores each day. You can even pre-prepare snacks or meals the day before to save yourself the effort during the workday. One note on screen time: Many parents try to limit screen time for their children, and this is a great idea. However, if you’re having a day where the only way you can get work done is to hand your child the iPad for a little while, try not to guilt trip yourself. No work-from-home situation is perfect, just do the best you can, and forget about the rest.