Being a work-at-home mum can have its advantages. You can pick up the kids from school, be there for them when they’re ill and fit your work around your home life. During the school holidays, it means the kids can stay home while you continue working. But working from home suddenly becomes a lot harder when you have the kids disturbing you every few minutes. As much as you want to spend time with them, you need to get your work finished first. So how do you keep them occupied until you’re ready to give them your full attention?
Get Them Reading
The holidays are a great time to get kids reading for fun. While they’re at school, they might not enjoy their given reading, often just because it’s something they have to do. They have plenty of time to read, so help them pick out something they want. Reading on their own is much more fun than having someone watch over them as they do their homework. It doesn’t have to be books either. If they struggle through books, let them choose a magazine or comic book instead. It doesn’t matter what the format is or whether it has pictures, as long as it gets them reading.
Sign Them Up for a Club
Although you’re probably trying to save some money by keeping them at home, it wouldn’t hurt for them to get out of the house. Look for athat runs once or twice a week for a few hours. You might find something at your local leisure or community centre, for example. They don’t have to be stuck indoors for the whole holiday, and they can socialise with people their age. It’s an especially good idea for an only child, who could be getting lonely while you work.
Let Them Use the Computer
Most parents don’t want to let their kids spend too much time on the computer, but you have the perfect opportunity to supervise them. Let them come in the same room as you, as long as they’re quiet, and you can keep each other company while you do your separate things. Either turn the volume down or give them headphones if you need it to be quiet. You can let them play on simple games sites like Playberry, which can help them learn coordination among other skills. Or they can visit sites like Cbeebies and CBBC, where there are educational activities and their favourite TV programmes.
Encourage Them to Use Their Imagination
Imaginative play is essential for a child’s development and helps them to learn to entertain themselves. You can start off by suggesting some things for them to do, such as building a fort. You could also set them up with some arts and crafts, as long as it’s something that doesn’t need supervision. For example, give them some PlayDoh or clay to make into different shapes. If you use clay, you could bake their creations together when you’re finished working.
It can be difficult to juggle the kids when you’re working from home, but it’s an excellent opportunity for them to learn to entertain themselves. Just make sure you spend time with them too.