Many parents are struggling to not only keep their children occupied, but to deal with taking on the role of educator; while still having to work and perform all the other daily activities that are necessities of family life. Children may be reacting to stress by acting out or regressing to behaviours long outgrown.

To help parents cope, here are some tips:

Discuss your experiences with relatives and friends or share a laugh. If you continue to experience problems, try a telehealth consultation with a mental health professional. Family Medicine Center has a team of mental health professionals who can help: Call 702-9310

Boundaries blur when work and home life occur at the same place. To help:
• Designate a specific area to work in, and an area for schoolwork and homework.
• Try setting a kitchen timer for 90 minutes and tell children you’ll spend 15 minutes doing something fun with them when the buzzer goes off. Children will be less likely to interrupt if they know there is something planned. When the buzzer goes off, thank your child for allowing you to do your work.

Maintain a routine.
• Post a written schedule of when you expect children to get up, do schoolwork, eat meals, play and go to bed.
• In the schedule include times dedicated to your own work.
• Allow for flexibility, play and free time.

• You can allow your child to watch a movie or play a video game while you complete a work task. It will also help your child stay connected to friends via videoconferencing or multi-player video games.
• Don’t forego the rules entirely. Still set limits and monitor the content.

You and everyone in your family need alone time every day.

• Taking a walk, enjoying a long shower or just sitting in your car.
• If you can’t get away physically, put in earbuds and practice mindfulness meditation via your phone.
• Practice self-compassion. Don’t worry if you can’t concentrate or let housekeeping standards slide. It’s important to go easy on your children and yourself.