With unemployment still a problem and child care costs on the rise, it makes sense to many parents for them to work online from home. It's a delicate balance, coordinating one's work schedule and habits while caring for children, especially young ones. For the home schooling parent, or all parents during spring or summer break, just dealing with the whereabouts of one's children and whether they are doing what they should be doing, can be a chore by itself. Being able to find quality work time in the midst of chaos takes some serious negotiations and planning. Here are some tips.
1) The Quiet Area
This goes for the children and for the parent. Quiet time requires no yelling and no arguments. It also requires they not barge in on their mother or father without a very good reason. Some kind of reward system might be set-up to encourage their co-operation. A treaty may be arrived at with younger children. What's important is they know their parent is working. They might not think of bothering them at their regular job, but they often see no problem when Mom or Dad is in the next room.
The Quiet Area is essential for home customer service and other telephone or chat workers. In fact, many companies that hire home workers are strict about this. There can be no significant background noise.
2) The Work Area
The work computer, the work desk, the work area, and any and all office supplies are off-limits. Batteries need to be preserved, paper needs to be available, and pens are for specific purposes. It is even suggested that the home worker lock their office door while not working. That helps in an immediate sense while also reinforcing the concept that the parent's work area is not for kids.
3) The Person in Charge
An oldest child might be put in charge of younger ones, which often makes them take to the responsibility with conscientious fervor.
4) School time, work time
When home schooled children are studying, or children are busy with homework, it's a good idea to create a work time environment for everyone. It's sometimes suggested that music be played. A video camera or audio monitoring system, covert though it may be, is always a practical suggestion when monitoring children.
5) Break time and office hours
There's a time to work and a time to play. Scheduling a lunch break and other downtime to share with one's children can be very beneficial in safeguarding the rest of one's time.
Rules are there to protect everyone's boundaries. They help everyone get their work done. Rules are the main way parents can work online from home.