We’re home, following the stay-at-home orders to help stop the spread of Covid-19. Which means, the kids are doing e-learning, we are working, and everyone is trying to stay sane. This isn’t the most ideal situation, but it is what it is. So how can you create a schedule for kids during the Covid-19 stay-at-home orders? I have some tricks that may help!
The Lazy Parents’ Guide To Creating A Schedule For Kids Covid-19
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Pick Your Priorities
This is the very first thing you need to plan before you put any sort of schedule into place. Pick your priorities. Not your kids, not your spouse…yours. For myself, I picked one work goal I wanted to complete. That is my priority. Every other detail can be handled at a different time or isn’t important enough to deal with.
The reason why you have to pick your priorities is because you can’t do it all. Right now is not the time to be an overachiever. It was hard for me at first to only pick like 2-3 priorities a day. When all this started, I had grand plans to do “all the things”. But what I found was me yelling and angry and mad at everyone. So I took a second to see what was making me so frustrated. Turns out, all the extra expectations I was putting on myself were stressing me out…who would have thought?!?!
So I started to pick 2-3 things I needed to do that day. That was it. I stopped trying to do all the things and only stick with a few. Now I feel more productive, I am not yelling, and I can end my day once all my tasks are complete.
Plan For “Alone Time”
After you pick your priorities, you need to schedule in time for yourself before you set a schedule for kids during Covid-19 stay-at-home orders. Grab your phone and put in time for yourself, whether that be a walk alone or taking a shower or simply watching a tv show by yourself. Include your spouse/significant other, and children in on this scheduling. The reason being is that they understand why you are scheduling time. See if they want to schedule time for themselves as well.
For us, my husband doesn’t have calls in the afternoon, so I schedule my walks at that time. The kids can play with my husband or play independently or do schoolwork. They know the rules during that time because we scheduled it in!! Since I am such an introvert, I need alone time with no one bothering me. If I don’t do this daily, I get rather crabby. That is why it has been so important for everyone to have alone time.
Schedule Yourself First
Once you all decided the best time for you to have alone time, it is time to build your daily schedule. First thing I do is put in my husband and my calls/meetings. The reason I do this is so that I know that during those times, the kids cannot do schoolwork that involves me. They have to do schoolwork independently or they have to play by themselves. This limits the stress around trying to do all the things.
Then I schedule a bit of time for me to work without interruptions. I also plan out what I am going to do the night before. Ok, it usually is in the afternoon because I try to be done around 3:00. My brain just doesn’t really function well after that.
I am using a paper planner that is broken up by hours. Each family member is color-coded so I don’t have to write their name just a time and “call”.
Schedule For Kids Next
Then I plug in the kids schedules next. They each have 2 set meeting times with their classes so I make sure to get those in the calendar. Then I schedule a little bit of work time, play time, and chore time. The chore time are all skills they need to know like cleaning, washing windows, washing floors, loading dishwasher, cooking meals, and other skills that one would consider life skills.
All of these skills are things we have been requiring of the kids each day as learning tools. I am a huge fan of doing life skills with young children!
If you need more guidance on some ideas for how to keep kids working while you work, I wrote a post about that here.
Unschooling Activities For Kids
I am sure you have heard of homeschooling, but have you heard of unschooling?? Unschooling is a style of home education that allows the student’s interests and curiosities to drive the path of learning according to NaturalChild.org. By going based off of the child’s interests, we are able to allow the kids to work more independently because they are doing things they are interested in, rather than what we are requiring them to know.
Right now, with anxiety high and uncertainty of what is to come, I have found this type of schooling has helped eliminate the fight. Instead of just doing the work, I have found that giving them the option to pick topics they want to learn, they are more engaged. And right now, we really need that!!
Some resources I have found helpful are listed below:
And while we are all trying to navigate creating schedules for kids during Covid-19 stay-at-home orders, I just want you to remember that you are doing a great job no matter what!! This is such a trying time and there is no right or wrong. I simply wanted to share some things I have found to be helpful for our family in hopes that it helps yours.