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Time Management and the Home-school Parent: A Never-Ending Battle

By: Krystle Crossman

Figuring out how to manage your time when you home-school can be tricky. We lead busy lives and sometimes you have to give things up in order to be able to teach your child at home. There is a very fine balance when it comes to time management in your home. Here are five tips from home-school mother and blogger Penelope Trunk to try and make time management easier for you:

1. Independence – You cannot sit with your children all day and not get anything done around the house. At some point during the day they need to be given independent time to do their work and figure things out for themselves. They will always have a barrage of questions for you and there are times when you should help them and explain to them about how to find the answer. Then there are other questions that can easily be found through a little research. These easier questions do not need an answer from you. Lead your child to a resource that will help them to find the answer such as an encyclopedia or the internet.

2. Breaks – There are going to be times when you need a break from schooling and the kids. This time can be used any way that you want but make sure that it’s scheduled and consistent. Trunk says that her husband used to take the kids randomly to give her alone time but she never knew when it was coming so she couldn’t plan out what she was going to do with her free time. Now they have scheduled times where he takes the children.

3. Emotional problems – Many parents are very attached to their children and think that if they are not by their side at all times of the day they are bad parents. This of course is not true but some of these issues stem from how they were raised by their parents. Make sure that you understand where time management meets emotional problems so that you can ensure you are not overdoing it.

4. Work time – If you work from the home while you are home-schooling you will need to set aside a time where the kids are working independently and know that they are not allowed to come to you with questions until the time is up. Working in unpredictable conditions will decrease your productivity and can cause you to make mistakes. Set aside a block of time where you are not interrupted for anything but emergencies so that your kids can get their work done and you can get yours done.

5. Give it up – There are certain things that you just won’t have time for anymore when you are home-schooling. Figuring out what you can give up and what you can’t will be a tough decision but think about your needs and your child’s needs and you will be able to come up with a solid plan on how to best manage your time.

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