It’s that time of year again, after Easter, when kids go back to school and everything resumes back to normal… except not this time… due to the Corona virus, most kids have to stay home and be home schooled this term. Double this with most parents having to work from home and we’re in for a bit of a challenge.
So how do you make this work? It’s a new environment for most parents and kids to navigate, but nearly everyone at Tupperware Australia is currently working from home, so we’ve reached out to the mum’s and dad's within our own team to give us their best tips on how to juggle work and school from home.
1. Negotiate flexibility & responsibility
Speak to your boss about mixing up your work hours to accommodate managing the kids’ schedule. Here at Tupperware we’ve made adjustments to meeting times so that our team members with kids can get their kids set up in the morning, and important meetings can be held slightly later. Share the load with your partner or ask another family member if you live in the same household to help - take turns in the responsibility of being ‘designated teacher’ for the day so that each parent can get a solid, productive day every other day.
TupTip from Liz, Brand & Access Manager
“One of the keys to homeschooling is flexibility, and letting your employer know of the challenges you face. But before you make a proposal for flexible working hours, make sure you understand the peaks and troughs in activities during the week. When will your manager need you the most? Are there specific reports, tasks or meetings that take place on certain days? Loop in regularly & keep the communication open with your manager, and be available during these times.”
2. Mimic the kids school schedule & plan your day ahead
Kids need structure and especially now when things can seem quite out of the ordinary. Let your kids know that the school holidays are over, and it’s back to school for them and back to work for you. Set up boundaries - let them know where their ‘classroom’ is and where your ‘office’ is. Establish some home school rules and mimic the schedule they keep at school for start time, recess, lunch time and home time. This will create more peace and stability in everyone lives.
TupTip from Justine, Senior Graphic Designer
“Plan your snacks and lunch in advance and try to stick to the same time each day. Get your walk, run or workout in early before the school day starts. That way you can spend your workout time planning the day ahead.”
3. Pack the kids lunch & snacks
Many parents have found that kids want snacks ALL the time - out of boredom, procrastination or just because the fridge is right there. This can lead to overeating and can also be very disruptive to your day and their day, so consider packing the kids lunch as usual in the morning and portioning their snacks for the day.
TupTip from Carrie, Consumer Campaign Manager
"Snack cups, sandwich keepers and drink bottles are a must for us. Even though the kids are not at school they are still making their lunches each morning. This way they don’t graze through the pantry or fridge all day long and I can also make sure they are staying hydrated because I can quickly and easily see how much water they have had at any given time.
The kids will snack on things like shapes biscuits, yoghurt, hard-boiled eggs, nuts (because we’re not at school), chopped up fruit and vegetables. A quick tip to reduce extra packaging and save money – buy big tubs of yoghurt instead of a six-pack of yoghurt and buy boxes of biscuits instead of multi-packs and portion them out into the snack cups. I love that the kids have even chosen their favourite colours so they match them up all colour coded.”