7 Strategies to Balance Children and Studying
The decision to dedicate time and energy to studying for your high school equivalency (HSE) may seem challenging if you have children. But many students just like you are finding ways to balance raising a family, working full- or part-time, and studying for the TASC Test Assessing Secondary Completion™. You can do it.
Here are seven strategies to maintaining a productive study routine when you have children to care for:
- Establish a new routine.
Creating a routine that incorporates time to study for your HSE could make all the difference in being prepared on test day. Organize your week around your family’s needs, your existing responsibilities, and your newly established study times. Sit down with your children to discuss the new routine and how you need their help to make it all work.
- Use your time wisely.
Are your kids young enough to nap? Are they old enough to play quietly by themselves? Or do they have regularly scheduled after-school activities during the week? Notice reoccurring times when you’re able to take 20 minutes to an hour to catch up on reading, review notes, or even get ahead on household chores.
- Do a little every day.
Avoid cramming at all costs. You will maximize productivity and retain more information if you study a little every day. Spread your studies out and focus on tackling one lesson at a time. At the end of the week, review what you learned each day.
- Schedule a family study hour.
Whether your children are in high school, grade school, or younger, schedule a standing hour every night where they work on their homework and you study. Your children will benefit from your leadership and learn the importance of education. If your children are too young to receive homework at school or daycare, give them an educational movie to watch, game to play, or activity to focus on during this hour.
- Lean on your support network.
If you find yourself in need of some extra, distraction-free study time, utilize your connections to support your academic efforts. Reach out to family and friends to arrange a sitter, sign your child up for an after-school sport or extracurricular activity, and organize a neighborhood carpool with children in the same activities as yours.
- Plan for the unexpected.
Despite your best efforts, unplanned events and obstacles will occasionally get tossed into your routine. Your child may get sick and need to be picked up from school early, your baby may keep you up all night crying, or your boss may tell you last minute that he needs you to work late. Whatever the circumstance, it’s important you’re prepared to shift gears quickly and adapt to the situation.
- Don’t forget to relax and have fun.
It’s important to find time to destress and unwind. While it’s essential your studies lead to a passing score on the TASC test, don’t let your studies consume your life. Celebrate your hard work and progress by taking a break and spending time with your family. Take your kids to the park, cook dinner with your family, have a family movie night, or let your kids pick an activity you can do together.
What works for you? Share your strategies for balancing studying and kids in the comments section below, or share this post with other students who are parents.