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Back to School Tips for an Uncertain Time

woman doing phone call with a girlThe back to school season is upon us and it has never been surrounded by so much uncertainty. By now you may or may not have heard about the fate of your child’s schooling. Many schools are having students divide their days between in-person instruction and online instruction. Some have chosen to do completely remote learning. Either way, it seems that your child will be doing at least some of their schooling online, creating tension and stress for you and your child.

From the end of the last school year when schools were first shut down, the challenges of online instruction have likely been a large source of stress for you and your child. This is especially true for those of you who are also working at home. Balancing your work life with your child’s dependence on you to help teach them is a stress that can make this challenging time that much more challenging. This article will give you some tips and tricks that will hopefully make the back to school season a little less challenging for you and your child!

School Supplies

The supplies list from teachers that parents get can be incredibly overwhelming and frustrating. Some supplies are so specific, and some are incredibly expensive. Personally, when I was in school, I never used some of the supplies and I do not think a single teacher ever yelled at me for not having the correct color folder or the right calculator. So, do not stress out if you cannot find an item on the list or if you don’t have enough money for something!

Many people have experienced financial struggles with the current state of the world and back to school lists can be the last thing on your mind. It is important to keep in mind that there are ways to help! It can be as simple as going to a dollar store for some of your items or even reusing items from the previous year. There is no shame in reusing a folder or binder if it’s in good shape! You could even ask a friend or family member to give you some of their leftover school supplies if they have them! This will save you both time and money!

Setting Boundaries

Setting boundaries can be one of the most important things you do during this time, but it is also one of the hardest. When your child needs help with schoolwork it can be tempting to immediately come to their aid. However, it is not realistic for you to stop what you are doing and help them every time they need it. Telling your child to wait for you to help can also be frustrating for both of you, however, sometimes they will need to wait. Giving them a specific time frame of when you will be able to help them may be especially useful!

Guiding your child to do what they can on their own and have them wait for your help may also help you tremendously. You can teach them that they can move on to another task or a different subject and wait for you to help them when you can. This may curtail a lot of stress and frustration on both of your parts.

Another important part of setting boundaries may even be as simple as staying in a separate room as your child while they are doing their online learning. If you are in the room you may both easily distract each other, causing a lot of frustration and not much productivity. You can stay in the next room so that you can still be within ear shot if they need you but without the distractions of being in the same room.

These tips may help you better balance between working at home and helping with your child’s schooling.

Self-Care

Self-care is an extremely important component in maintaining a peaceful environment during this time. Self-care is essentially taking time out of your day for yourself. It can be as simple as taking a bath, coloring, or reading, depending on what your interests are. Some people think that self-care must be something new that you do not already do. However, self-care can be as simple as taking a shower. During that shower all you need to do is let yourself have some time to try not to think about your stresses. This sounds a lot easier said than done, but deep breathing exercises and meditation can be life changing. And if you do it while you shower or before you go to bed, you do not even need to carve out any extra time. A quick Google search of breathing exercises will yield a ton of easy-to-follow instructions!

Self-care is not plainly important for you! It is also important that your child gets some self-care time as well. These can be things that they already enjoy doing like coloring, drawing, reading, and even playing sports or going on a walk. Giving your children time to do things that they enjoy can be incredibly helpful and not only help reduce your stress, but theirs as well. Self-care allows for time to reflect on and help process the events of the day. This can be vital in relieving stress and anxiety in a time that is full of it.

Homework Buddies

Lastly, a program Prasada In Home is implementing is called Homework Buddies. Kathy Sheldon, our CEO, has children and came up with the idea to hire a homework buddy for her daughter after some frustration built from working from home and online schooling. This made such an immense difference in both of their lives that she decided to implement the program at Prasada In Home!

Homework Buddies will help review you child’s agenda for the week and create a list of daily tasks for them! They also will assist in keeping classwork organized and help you child with developing crucial studying skills. Homework buddies will also help you child with areas that they struggle with and help you and your child find online resources for even more help. They will also ensure that your child’s work is complete and submitted online and hold them accountable.

Participating in this program will help relieve a lot of stress for you and your child! Sometimes your child might not want to listen to you or might not want your help which can create a whole host of problems. However, with this program you can have peace of mind knowing that there is someone helping you and your child through these hard times. You do not have to worry about holding your child accountable or making sure that their deadlines as well as your own are met. This may alleviate a lot of stress on your part and give you more time to focus on your work!

Hopefully, you find these tips helpful and they help alleviate some stress and anxiety about going back to school. Remember to stay hopeful and calm during these trying times! I know it is hard, but you are not in this alone! The homework buddies’ program can really make a difference. It is important to note that you can rely on your friends and family to help make these times a little less difficult!

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