We’re heading towards the era where most parents are transitioning to homeschooling. Apart from tons of benefits of homeschooling that make parents choose it, there’s one significant challenge every parent who works full time faces – how to manage both? How to work full time and homeschool?
Whether doing it full time or just supplementing your child’s education, homeschooling can be a big adjustment. But especially If you’re working full time, it can feel like an impossible juggling act.
I know the same question keeps running through your head: Can I homeschool and work full time? AND How to work full time and homeschool?
The straightforward answer is yes, you can; for “How to do it”, let’s dive into the nitty gritty.
In the events and meetups, I often asked this question about how I manage my business while pursuing my homeschooling journey with my children.
I always replied the same.
Let me be honest: Homeschooling while working is not easy, it’s a constant juggle, but it can be done successfully with careful planning and organization.
I am a full-time working mom who works 7-9 hours six days a week; like all others, I have my own responsibilities, and my children are school-aged. So how do I manage this? How do I work full time and homeschool like I do without compromising my roles?
Well, to be honest with you, it’s not that easy (but possible), sometimes I have to depend upon caffeine and my willpower, and sometimes I give up my sleep (even 5 hours consistently for many weeks) to get things done. Still, I manage because it’s my choice, and I am passionate about it.
Furthermore, I also love running my business and have a strong motive behind it. So, that’s another thing that keeps me pushing.
✅ Dedication and organization are critical when working full time and homeschooling.
What you’ll learn from this guide!
For now, I shared my struggles (sorry for being so real), but I want to assure you that this guide is not going to be a repeat of my story. It’s a How-To Guide, plus I had a conversation where I asked three parents about how they make it work, who are in the same situation as you.
🤙 How to manage your time as a working parent and homeschooler
🤙 Tips for setting up a routine
🤙 The different ways to homeschool while working
🤙 And resources to help you on your journey
But first, come,
Is it legal to work full time while homeschooling my kids?
It might be known to you, but for most, this query is still a myth, so let me clear it first: Yes! It is legal in all 50 states to work full time and homeschool your kids.
Keeping this fact in mind, homeschooling can be done anytime.
Now that we know it’s legal let’s get into the practicalities of making it work for your family.
How do make homeschooling and working full time work?
Here are some things to consider:
➡️ Your why – What is your motivation for wanting to homeschool? It will be your North Star when the going gets tough.
➡️ Your family’s why – What are your kids’ motivations for wanting to homeschool? Why do they want to learn at home?
➡️ Your work situation – How many hours do you work? What is your schedule like? How flexible is your job?
➡️ Your homeschooling style – What type of homeschooling are you interested in? Are you looking for a more structured approach or a more relaxed approach? As for me, I prefer a relaxed approach. Sometimes I like life experiences rather than just going through textbooks. It helps me to be in casual mode plus get the most out of it.
➡️ Your kid’s learning style – How do your kids learn best? Do they like to be hands-on, or do they prefer to sit and listen to lectures?
Now that you’ve considered all these factors, let’s dive into how you can homeschool while working full-time.
How to manage your time as a working parent and homeschooler
The first step to managing your time as a working parent and homeschooler is figuring out your priorities. You must sit down and figure out what is most important to you. For some people, their job will be the top priority; for others, it will be their children. Once you know your preferences, you can start to figure out a schedule that works for you.
One way to manage your time is to create a daily or weekly schedule (we will cover the homeschool scheduling part later in this guide). It can help you to know what needs to be done and when. It can also help to prevent you from getting overwhelmed. Another way to manage your time is to use a planner. I use the notion to plan homeschool lessons as well as my life. This can help you to see what is coming up and help you to plan ahead.
The most important thing to remember is that you need to be flexible. Things will come up that you didn’t plan for. You may have days when you must work late, or your child may be sick. When these things happen, don’t beat yourself up. Just roll with the punches and do the best you can.
The different ways to homeschool while working
You can homeschool while working full time in a few different ways. The first way is to do all of the homeschooling yourself. It can be a great option if you have a flexible job or if you can work from home.
The downside is that it can be very time-consuming, and you may not have as much time for your job or family.
What are the other options?
Hopefully, there are other options available!
Hiring a homeschool tutor
I’ve been doing this, especially when I need some help with specialized subjects such as a second language or math, while I can still focus on other things. The simple way I love is to hire a teacher online; I prefer going to Preply.com to choose the perfect tutor for my son, as I can check the reviews, education, and background of each one of them. This is affordable too, as you’ve options to hire from countries like the Philippines, India, or Pakistan, where the dollar goes further.
Enrolling your child in a homeschooling program
I know you always struggle to give your best attention even though you do a full time job, but I’m pretty sure there must be some ups and downs in your professional and family life.
Enrolling your child in a homeschooling program is the best way to secure your child’s learning in good hands, and you can focus on your work with no worries.
There are many different types of homeschooling programs available. Some are run by the government, while others are private programs. There are also online homeschooling programs like K12.com, which is the best-paid platform among all, and Khan academy is also the best resource. The type of program you choose will depend on your child’s needs and your schedule.
Co-ops are holy grails for working parents who want to homeschool. A co-op is a group of families who come together to provide each other with support and resources.
It can be a great way to meet other homeschooling families and to get help with homeschooling. And yes! Co-ops helped me a lot with my children’s field trip ideas and other activities.
How to work full time and homeschool – 7 ways that make it easy for me
It seems like a daunting task, right?
When I was starting out my homeschooling journey, I was a full-time working mom. I had no idea how to do it, but with time, things start getting in the flow.
Here are my seven takeaways for you.
Scheduling and planning are essential when you are homeschooling while working full time.
I like to sit down at the beginning of each week and plan out our homeschool lessons for the week. I also want to list things that need to be done around the house.
The nifty advice here is to remember different daily tasks/jobs you’re already doing at home and try to school around that. For instance, I make dinner every night, so while I am cooking, my kids are doing math lessons at the kitchen table.
Figure out how many blocks you have in a day that you can devote to homeschooling. For me, it’s typically two blocks of time in the morning and two blocks in the evening, and a few blocks late at night (because during the day, I work on my business, and the night is devoted to meal preparation and other home/homeschooling stuff that doesn’t consume much energy). When my kids go to bed, I try to do our lesson planning, paperwork, and other homeschool-related tasks.
While in the morning, we do our reading, writing, and phonics lessons. We also try to get outside for some fresh air and physical activity. In the evening, we do our math lesson and other subjects that we didn’t get to in the morning.
Moreover, I always have at least one teacher on my back with the responsibility to teach some specialized subjects; I mostly schedule this before evenings (which means when I’m on the job, I make sure my kids are still learning something). Well, this is also because they’re mature. So if you’re homeschooling a toddler, you’ll have to align this responsibility with any family person.
I’ll cut to the chase now.
It’s all about your priorities. How do you want to spend your day? What’s your routine, and how many blocks do you get each day. Just sit with a blank document/paper/or some sort of scheduling app and start filling.
Make it easy, be simple, and think in general. First, look at your homeschooling schedule and lesson plans, house chore-related stuff, homeschooling responsibilities, and extracurricular activities. Think about what you can delegate, what things are not necessary for now, and how you can make more time for items that are important to you.
There is no thumb rule. It’s just what works for you.
Remember: Planning and Scheduling will not always be perfect, but this will give you some direction and make you feel less like you’re homeschooling productively. For me, a consistent schedule is not a priority. Instead, I follow a Fall behind, Catch up And Go Ahead structure for achieving things. It means I try to achieve as much as possible and don’t feel bad when I fail to catch up on things.
To learn more about this life structure, watch out this video.
I have found that flexibility is essential when homeschooling while working full time. There will be days when things don’t go as planned, and that’s ok!
One way I have found to be flexible is not to be afraid to change things. If we are having a bad day, I will take a break from our lesson plans and do something fun instead.
Most days, we start our homeschooling lessons later in the day, and on other days we might not start at all, but we readjust them on the weekends.
So, It’s important to remember that there is no one right way to homeschool. You have to find what works for you and your family.
Take Advantage of Technology
There are so many fantastic homeschooling resources available online. You can find just about anything you need for homeschooling online. There are online lesson plans, worksheets, games,
One way that I incorporate technology into our homeschooling is by using online video lessons. We have used Khan Academy for math lessons, and they have been a great resource.
I also use YouTube videos to supplement our science lessons. We have watched videos about the solar system, animals, and experiments.
Take Time for Yourself
One of the most important things that I have learned is that you need to take time for yourself. When you are trying to balance working full time and homeschooling, it can be easy to forget to take care of yourself.
Make sure to schedule some time each day or week for yourself. This is time that you can use to do something that you enjoy. It could be reading, walking, or even taking a nap.
It is important to remember that you cannot pour from an empty cup. You need to ensure that you are taking care of yourself to take care of your family.
Deligating the tasks
I was not a fan of delegating tasks. I was kind of a weird person who believed that if I wanted something to be done in a specific way, I had to do it myself.
But then I realized that this was not sustainable. I was trying to do everything, and it was just too much.
I have learned to delegate some of the tasks to other family members. My husband helps with homeschooling when he can and does a lot of the laundry and cooking (lol).
I have also started to delegate some of the homeschooling tasks to my kids. They are old enough now to do some of their school work, and they love helping with things around the house.
A recommendation for you: Well, it’s not fit my case, but if you have an old-aged family person, you find holy messes around the house because of kids, or you’ve no time for house chores, there is always an option of hiring a maid. It will make your life much easier.
I’m sure there would be other homeschooling mums in your area. You can together make a local homeschooling group. This way, you can socialize with your kids, get some help and support, and make friends.
Joining an online homeschooling community is also a great way to connect with other homeschooling families worldwide.
I asked three parents about How to work full time and homeschool
Let’s head toward the most exciting part, and I had a short conversation with three working parents about how they manage to homeschool while working.
I was having a conversation while researching this guide (that you’re reading), so I already structured all of their tips above. Still, as a bonus, I’m sharing the conversation summary below.
🍀 Lisa: “I am a full-time working mom and have a 7-year-old daughter. I struggled to balance work and homeschooling, but I have found that some things help. I make sure to set aside time each day for homeschooling, even if it is just a few minutes. I also try to be flexible with my work schedule so that I can be available for homeschooling when my daughter needs me. Additionally, I have found it helpful to create a routine for our homeschooling so that my daughter and I know what to expect each day.”
🍀 Brian: “I work full-time and homeschool my two kids (ages 5 and 7). It can be tough to balance everything, but having the right people around is the key. We have a great support system with our family and friends, who are always willing to help us when needed. Additionally, we use an online homeschooling program that is flexible and allows us to work around our busy schedules.”
🍀 Sharon: “I am a full-time working mom and have two kids (ages 8 and 14). I struggled to balance work and homeschooling, but one thing that helped me a lot was prioritizing my daily tasks and blocking my time each day. I also ensure that our weekends are productive, we plan field trips and extracurricular activities three times per week, and everything is just organized. Another thing that has helped me is communicating with my kids’ grandparents and other relatives, so they can also be involved in their learning.”
As you can see, each parent has a different way of making it work. There is no one right way to homeschool while working full-time. The most important thing is to find what works best for you and your family.
My 3 Tips for Juggling Work and Homeschooling
Juggling work and homeschooling can be challenging, but it is possible to do it successfully. Following these tips can make it work for you and your family.
- Set a Schedule – One of the most important things you can do when homeschooling while working full time is to set a schedule and TRY sticking to it. It will help you stay organized and on track.
- Get Help When You Need It – Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Whether it’s from your spouse, family, friends, or a professional, getting help can make a big difference.
- Take Breaks – Taking breaks when you homeschool while working full time is essential. It will help you avoid burnout and keep your energy up.
My advice to new homeschoolers
If you’re considering homeschooling,
I got a disclaimer for you! It will not be an easy task, and it is a full-time job. From my experience as a homeschooling parent, I would like to share some advice.
I’m not going to tell you to figure out whether it’s right for you or not because homeschooling is suitable for everyone who is dedicated to it.
You’ve to sort out your priorities, challenges, and goals. Find alternative ways to cater and fulfill, and don’t be afraid to be different.
Be flexible, create your plan, and get on track.
It will be like a roller coaster ride in the initial days. So, get ready for the ups and downs! Take naps, off-days, and fun days whenever you feel like it.
And finally, don’t forget to enjoy the journey rather than striving to reach the destination.
It’s all going to be messy
Homeschooling is a big commitment, but it can be a rewarding experience for you and your child. But the journey comes up with sets of challenges and surprises.
I can bet that it is going to going to messy one!
Your kids nag at you and frustrate you when you try to teach them after completing hours of workload. You will feel like giving up some days. But don’t worry, it’s all part of the process. The good news is that it gets easier with time.
Homeschooling requires a lot of patience, planning, and hard work. But most importantly, it requires a willingness to learn and grow with your kids.
So, if you’re up for the challenge, go ahead and give homeschooling a try. It might just be the best decision you ever make.
- careful planning and organization
- building a support network
- setting boundaries
These are my top 3 takeaways.
I hope these tips will help you embark on your homeschooling journey.
📌 Check: The best laptops for homeschoolers
Keira Addison is a mother pursuing homeschooling for her kids for decades. She loves sharing her experience and practical advice about homeschooling, which has made her a popular authority on the subject. As a professional author, Keira knows how to communicate clearly and effectively with her audience, making her an ideal source of information for anyone considering homeschooling their children.