While your young family is certainly one of the big joys of your life, the pitter-patter of little feet can make it hard to concentrate when it comes to hitting the books. Though going back to school after having kids is a challenge, it’s also the best way to make sure you can provide your children everything they need.
The Challenges of Being a Student and a Parent
The Advantages of Going Back to School
Tips for Balancing School, Work, and Family Life
- Have a Deep Child Care Bench: If possible, line up two to four backup babysitters you can call on if your primary childcare provider calls in sick so you don’t miss class. This can also help you spread out the responsibility if you are relying on family and friends.
- Invest in a Planner: Whether you keep your calendar on paper or on your smartphone, you’ll need to keep track of work, classes, child care and other appointments so you don’t miss anything or accidentally over-schedule.
- Keep a Book in Your Bag: Get in the habit of carrying at least one of your assignments with you wherever you go so you can make the most of any time spent in waiting rooms or standing in line. You’d be surprised how 10 minutes of extra study time here and another 15 there can really add up.
- Schedule Breaks: Make sure to keep some time open for yourself and for your family each week. Plan something fun to relax and reconnect — and to avoid burnout.
- Don’t Cram: It’s much easier to work for an hour on your studies each night than it is to try to write a paper or read a whole chapter the night before it’s due. Try to schedule a regular study period each day to keep from becoming overwhelmed.