Can you homeschool when you work from home?

Today was one of those days. You know the kind. When getting your seven year old to do anything feels like pulling teeth. And your three year old pushes your buttons all day long so that when he finally falls asleep for a nap at 6:30 pm, you don't wake him because you like the peace, even though you know he'll be up late because of it. And through it all, you've been trying to think about blog posts and Facebook and finding new clients or customers, but you can't actually DO anything because the kids are taking up all your time. And sure, many of you are looking forward to the first day of school (or rejoicing because it's already come). But for those of us who homeschool, it's a different story.

My kids are with me about 90% of the time. They get up in the morning before I do, and go to bed between 9 and 10 pm. My husband works nights, and often doesn't get home till 11:30 or midnight. I am an introvert. Therefore, my sanity slowly slips away bit by bit the longer I go without alone time. So for that hour and a half between the kids being in bed and my husband getting home, I breathe a lot easier. I get things done that I can't do during the day.

You can homeschool if you work at home. I've done it for two years. I know other business women who homeschool and have done it for longer. How do we do it? Here are a few strategies I've used to be more productive when the kids are always at home.

How to work around the homeschool

  • Work at night/early in the morning. You can get a lot done when the kids are in bed. And you can eat all the good snacks while you do so. ;-) Just make sure you still get enough sleep, okay?

  • Hire a babysitter. Do you know another homeschool family with teenage kids? Ask if they'd like to earn some pocket money by babysitting your kids while you work. They can come to your house and play with the kids (useful if you have a little one who's not quite ready to be away from mum), or you can drop them off at the other family's home.

  • Put on a video. Now, we all know that too much television is a bad thing. But a video a couple of times a week is hardly too much (unless it's the extended version of The Lord of the Rings). Let them watch something fun (or even educational!) while you write for your blog.

  • Send them outside! Provided they're old enough, playing outside without adults is actually good for kids. Remember all the fun we used to have playing outside? I'm sure my mom still doesn't know half of what my brother and I got up to when we ran around our seven acres. We had a ball, and she had a bit of peace and quiet for a while.

  • Leave your partner with the kids while you hide in your office/sewing room/stock room. Since my husband works nights, he's home until after lunch time. This means when I need to, I can fire up the laptop in my office and work in there, with the door shut.

Do you homeschool? What other ways do you get time to run your business? I'd love to hear your ideas! (I may need them!)

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