Online classes are perfect for those of us who work from home, especially busy moms. Whether it’s getting a professional certificate or a higher degree online, there are plenty of opportunities to use a flexible online schedule to your benefit. But, it does require a major adjustment, as any online course will be a time investment. Here are a few tips for juggling the load:
- Get the family on board.
Without the full support of your family, it will be really difficult to succeed taking a course as a stay-home mom. Make sure your partner is fully aware of the change and supports the decision. Also, let your kids know about your education goals and let them know that you will be working hard.
- Create a more disciplined schedule.
Those times of the day that used to serve as a free for all, when the kids are watching TV or playing alone outside and you get to relax for a moment or two, may be long gone once you add the rigors of a course schedule to your days. Get on a much more specific schedule and stick to it.
- Have your partner put the kids to bed.
If you normally take bed time duty, having your partner assume that role could be one of the best ways to start studying in the evening and get a head start for those night-time hours.
- Study during school hours.
If you have children of school age, make an effort to fit as much study time as possible into school hours. This may require you to move your work schedule around or work harder during the day, but it is worth it to study without distractions.
- Go the library story hours.
If you have local organizations that offer story and play hours for young children, this could be a good opportunity to let your child have some fun while you take time to do classwork.
- Take advantage of gym childcare.
If you have a gym membership that offers complimentary child care during workouts, this is a perfect way to get private study time. Bring your textbooks or audio lectures to the gym. Kill three birds with one stone by getting some exercise, free child care and time to cram.
- Make an investment in a great babysitter.
You will need a babysitter right now who is dependable and trustworthy. You never know when you may have a deadline that needs to be met or when you may fall behind in class. Plan to make the extra investment in a top-notch babysitter.
Kate Willson is a blogger for Collegecruch.org. She is passionate about providing up-to-date information and advice for distance education students and welcomes any comments or questions below!