Real Life. Real Moms. Working While Home Schooling. The Struggle is Real.

Let’s call a spade a spade.  Working from home is challenging.  Schooling from home is challenging.  Trying to do both is outright stressful!  But with the right strategies, set-ups, and mindset in place, there are many creative ways to turn this major challenge into a win for you, for your kids, and for the entire family.

We interviewed 3 working parents who are facing the same challenges as you are, raising and schooling pre-schoolers up to high schoolers, all of whom are home (until further notice), and here is what they have to share.

How has your experience been during COVID with also having your children at home?

“The quality time together has definitely been priceless. It has really bonded us and made us appreciate the down time we have had without the stresses of being somewhere, planning etc. On the flip side, it is a struggle as the socialization with other kids and families has been greatly restricted which has affected us all.”


“Being home did mean we were able to spend more time together as a family, but then you can’t get away from your family as easily, fights are more frequent, tempers run short & the kids miss their activities/friends.  We’ve had to implement rules we haven’t had to before….like yes, you must wear pants during the day…..yes, you still need to shower even though the class can’t smell you…..no, you can’t eat cereal & toast for every meal all week long.   Boredom-baking has become a thing in our house.
But on the flip of that, no one has been sick (thankfully) & with more time home we’ve been able to do things that we haven’t had time for before – like now everyone takes a turn at planning/making dinner each week (so lots of new recipes & the kids are learning how to cook), one was bored enough & began to learn Italian, the boys learned how to golf (ish), one figured out how to make kombucha & french meringue & is now baking her way through a fancy cake book, lots of bike rides, lego masterpieces & rounds of water-balloon baseball, the garage is almost clean, we expanded our veggie garden, the kids helped my husband build a shed, redid some landscaping……etc.  Things we just haven’t had time for in the past. “

“For the most part – very good, with the exception of not being able to visit with other children on a regular basis.”

What is your greatest struggle with this situation? 

“Inability to go to our normal places… lack of childcare availability, unable to regularly see people or establish new relationships with other kids and families.”


“Sheer boredom.  At some point, they’ve done all the crafts, watched all the shows, played all the video games, used all the water balloons, baked all the cookies & even fighting isn’t interesting anymore.”


“The greatest struggle is finding balance. Everything from work/ socializing with others/ staying connected to family/friends. It has been very difficult being able to manage day to day responsibilities when trying to manage kids school work and schedules along with your own work responsibilities. But more than that and most importantly is the struggle of not being able to see or visit loved ones.”

What strategies have you had to adapt in order to get your work done?

“I have had to implement a daily routine and schedule for my kids. Anywhere from arts and crafts time (independently), to reading, play time and very limited screen time if needed. We also had to dedicate work areas in the house so we have privacy to make calls and have heads down time to focus on doing our jobs. A routine is very important so that the kids know what to expect, when and where to do them all. Without this, they would be everywhere doing god knows what!”


“When we were both working reduced hours, my husband & I were trying to offset our days so that we could take the kids out for walks or bike rides or just play a board game with them.  With us both back to full time, we’ve both just been trying to start work super-early, take some of those same breaks with the kids during the day, & then put in extra hours in the evening or over the weekend.  Basically adapt the schedule so that we can be flexible during the day as much as we can be.”


“Working while the kids sleep or while their dad has time at home before work in the mornings.  Working late at night… prioritizing my work (doing the most important, more complicated or creative things when I have help, doing the rest when the kids are sleeping or when I can fit it in).”

What do you have in place to balance supervising their schooling with your own work demands?

“My plan for now is to work in the same room as my youngest when she is on her zoom calls so that she is making her call in time, paying attention and focusing on the teacher. I am hoping that as time goes on, there will be less supervision that is needed and that they can do all of that independently.”


“It helps that mine are all a bit older & have all had at least a few years in a school setting that has helped establish expectations for classes, work, etc.  Their schools have also relied fairly heavily on digital learning platforms (Google Classroom, etc) for schoolwork, so everyone is already pretty familiar with the tech end of how this will be working.  And I have big ones willing (usually) to help the little ones with schoolwork.”


“We have created daily routines organized around a timed structure and our own work / time restraints.  Basically sticking to a schedule they’re familiar with and can rely on.”

What strategies have you had to adapt in order to get your work done?

“Working while the kids sleep or while their dad has time at home before work in the mornings.  Working late at night… prioritizing my work (doing the most important, more complicated or creative things when I have help, doing the rest when the kids are sleeping or when I can fit it in).”


“When we were both working reduced hours, my husband & I were trying to offset our days so that we could take the kids out for walks or bike rides or just play a board game with them.  With us both back to full time, we’ve both just been trying to start work super-early, take some of those same breaks with the kids during the day, & then put in extra hours in the evening or over the weekend.  Basically adapt the schedule so that we can be flexible during the day as much as we can be.”


“I have had to implement a daily routine and schedule for my kids. Anywhere from arts and crafts time (independently), to reading, play time and very limited screen time if needed. We also had to dedicate work areas in the house so we have privacy to make calls and have heads down time to focus on doing our jobs. A routine is very important so that the kids know what to expect, when and where to do them all. Without this, they would be everywhere doing god knows what!”

What kind of set up do you have for your kids to study? What works?  What doesn’t?

“Still working on it.  Basically a play/activity room that doesn’t have a television in it.  I’ve found that if there’s a TV in the room, the kids just don’t follow through with creative projects, etc. Also, organization is huge. When the kids see too many activities in front of them, they don’t know what they’re doing and can’t really stay focused on one thing at a time.”


“Everyone has their own laptop/computer/headphones & dedicated work area/chair.  They each have their books set up on the desk along with whatever school supplies they think they’ll need.  We tried sharing desks/computers during the spring & it just didn’t work.”


“Right now my 8 year old is doing her schooling in her room at her desk/vanity. With my younger one since she will need more supervision, we have setup an area in the dining room where she does her zoom calls and I work in there with her as well. I also converted our garage to a homeschool so that eventually we can have other classmates come over for either a play date or to do school work together. We chose to have the set up down there so we can have the garage door open with proper air flow and make it as socially distant friendly as possible. So far it has been working but we are only on day 1 so we will see how the school year goes!”

What are the positives of having your kids at home and working from home? 

“Getting to watch them grow and be a part of that experience.”


“Absolutely the flexibility.  I have the option of getting up early to get a jump on the day & don’t have to break to drive kids to school.  No one can call me to say they forgot a paper, or lunch, or that they are sick & need picking up, or that they forgot they have a late play rehearsal that overlaps (poorly) with a siblings practice.  People can make their own lunches.  My husband is home to help with things.”


“Working from home has been a HUGE blessing in the flexibility of being able to be home with the family and ensure they are getting the support and guidance that they need. Also, the quality time we get with each other has been amazing and being able to see them develop and grow has been absolutely memorable!”

What advice do you have for other parents?

“Hang in there!  It definitely has to do with mindset over everything.  If your kids are a huge priority to you, then remember to treat them as though they’re number one and not that they’re burdening you while they’re around you when you have to work.  Using positive language, even when you’re stressed out is a huge part of how the whole energy of the house feels.  Play music, be creative.  And on a bad day… be okay with that and just let them watch a movie for a bit so you can let your brain UNWIND!
Also, finding ways to separate yourself from work… so when you have your work at home, you can literally ALWAYS be working.  I set a designated time that I’m no longer allowed to look at my work emails, or anything related to work.  I respect that boundary for my personal sanity and then designate my work times as very important, crunch times.”

“As much as humanly possible, plan ahead (meal plan, schedules, daily chores) but also try to stay flexible.

Try to remember that distance learning is stressful for the kids too & they are missing out on a ton of stuff they’d otherwise get to do (especially if they are in a final year at a school level – 5th, 8th, 12th).  Try to keep checking in with them on how they’re doing with assignments but also just as people.
If you have older ones, get them involved as much as you can with helping the little ones.  Make them cook.  Give them all (big & little) basic daily chores (dishes, laundry, picking up toys, vacuuming, wiping counters, sweeping) so the house doesn’t go completely haywire.  Praise them when they’ve done something good/helpful.  Hide the tv remotes, game controllers & good snacks until they’re done with their work & chores.  Bribery works better than yelling.”

“My advice is to just have as much patience as possible with this huge shift and change. I know it is frustrating and difficult to adjust and balance and is not the ideal situation for anyone but as do with any hurdles in life, we need to find a way to adapt and make sure that we stay positive and be patient. Everything will fall into place and we will eventually have our routines set but until then, just know that there will be frustrations and obstacles but always find the silver lining to every situation and know we are all in this together! And make sure to find time for yourself!!”
So there you have it!  Now, we’d love to hear from you!  Let us know how you are doing, what is working, what isn’t…. we really want to hear from you!
No Comments

Post A Comment

9 + nineteen =



ِAt PBE, We Are Passionate About Ergonomics. We Are Equally Passionate About Wellness.
But We Are Most Passionate About YOU!

Follow Us

Join Our Community!

Subscribe now for weekly words of wellness, ergo tips, stretches and more...




100% Privacy. We don't spam.