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Simple Solid and Sane Ways to Work at Home With Kids

Simple Solid and Sane Ways to Work at Home With Kids

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How to Successfully Work from Home With Kids

Your family has come around to your new work from home arrangement but the constant interruptions from the kids, the noisy chaos all around you and the demand of your time, how do you balance work and home life when your kids are around? Find out by using these 13 simple and sane ways to work at home with kids.

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Having kids of any age while staying at home is difficult much less holding down a work from home job plus there are so many things to consider.

The kids’ ages, their schedules, their eating habits, their sleeping routine, their interests and all the other things combined into making family life as happy and smooth as possible.

You hopefully had a discussion with your partner of whether to have the children homeschooled or not and this can impact your working time immensely. But like with anything practice makes perfect.


Being productive with limited time, being creative and trying to please everyone is something that will have to be developed over time.

Pleasing everyone is an impossibility but making sure that you are present and still have time for them plus be productive and motivated when working is not.

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You’re asking yourself how are you going to accomplish this. Well, by changing bad habits, being flexible and learning to become organized. Let me break it down into the 3 stages of working at home with the kids.

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3 Stages of Working at Home With Kids

Simply put the 3 key stages are:

  • Working at home with kids from newborn to  4 years. So babies to preschoolers/kindergarten.
  • Working at home with elementary/primary school kids from 5 to 11.
  • Working at home with secondary/high school kids from 12 to 18.

Working at Home With Kids Who Are 0 – 4 Years

Knowing how to organize yourself when working from home with kids who are younger than preschool can be quite a feat. At this age, they are the priority but there are many moms and dads who manage to juggle it all over the world.

If you are lucky to have a job that doesn’t require phone or video meetings then perfect you have a bit more flexibility. If not, then I hope you have an easy-going client that doesn’t mind your son or daughter video bombing your meeting.

Do you remember this video? It still has me in stitches every time I watch it. 😂

With babies you can, fingers-crossed, develop a daily routine to know when they want to eat, sleep, be changed and want to play.

Now, all that I just said a second ago about routine, forget it around teething time. Constant cuddles, teething gel rings and teething powder are a must – I and my whole extended family swear by this teething product made by Ashton Procter for 150 years.

If you’re from or have family in the UK you would definitely know what I’m talking about as it’s a life-saver. A great natural and gentle soothing remedy made from the Chamomile flower. Luckily, you can get it through Amazon if you’re not in the UK.

If you can’t get the teething powder where you are a great alternative is the best selling Camilia Teething Relief Homeopathic Medicine.

Kids at the wonderful crawling, furniture surfing and toddler age are unpredictable, inquisitive and can get up to all sorts even when they are around you. Nap time is a Godsend to actually get any work done at all.

During this time as they are so young you may have to work some odd hours. Very early in the morning or very late at night, especially if working for yourself and freelancing.

Working at Home With Kids at Primary School Age

It gets a little easier as they get older as they understand more, develop more independence and if they go to school you have a few hours to do as much as you can before having to deal with after-school activities, dinner and homework.

If you homeschool you can develop a structured learning program and still find time to do some freelancing work.

At this age, you can easily explain that you have work to do and that you need some quiet time. Let the kids occupy themselves at an area specially set up as an activity station where they can do writing, drawing, role play with siblings and sometimes even messy play.

If they are doing any form of remote learning remember to set screen time rules. Yep, this just doesn’t apply when playing video games.

Also, don’t forget while working to block out 30-minute sessions to hang out with them too.

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Working at Home With Kids of Teenage Years

Once the kids reach teenage years they can more or less manage without you and don’t really want to hang around you anyway so you can get on with work.

But a word of caution, this is the age when peer pressure starts to set in, where they start to identify with certain peer groups, change schools and make new friends.

Make sure to keep an eye on them and their friends in case there are any noticeable changes in their behavior outside of normal hormonal teenage imbalance.

Even while working and trying to stay focused on your work to make that money you can’t drop the ball on your parental role. Try to keep an eye on their online activities which can be a challenge as teens want their privacy and independence.

Now that you know of the 3 working from home with the kids stages it’s time to tell you about the 13 simple and easy ways to work successfully while being a mom or dad.

13 Things to Do When Working From Home With Kids

work at home mom with baby

1) Have a Family Meeting

Discuss your home working arrangement with your family. This includes grandparents, aunts and uncles, siblings and in-laws. Make sure that everyone is on board.

This will help for the time when you need a babysitter. Arrange a playdate with cousins so that you can find some extra hours to work if you have serious deadlines to keep. Get BFF’s involved too.

2) Get a Planner

It can be a physical planner or a digital planner like Trello. Set out what you plan to do for the day, week, month, quarter and so on.

Set goals for your work and for your family. This includes leisure time goals to keep you motivated. Having a planner always to hand makes it easy to know what everyone is up to.

3) When Do You Work Best?

Figure out if you are a morning person or a night owl and get up an hour or so earlier or go to bed an hour or more later.

Sounds obvious but you can get so much done when there is peace and quiet around you. You can really get a lot done without any distractions.

4) Use a Large Family Planner

A family planner is a great help for you, your partner and the kids to know exactly what they should be doing and when. Place it in a prominent high traffic location where everyone will see it.

For instance, on the fridge or by the entrance hall where everyone comes in and takes off their shoes or grabs their school bags each morning.

5) Pre-plan Meals

There are so many meal planners out there that can save you time or create your own. You can make packed lunches from the night before, cook in batches and freeze certain ingredients. 

In certain cultures, this is sacrilege as everything is expected to be cooked fresh (leftovers, food from the freezer – no way) but hey, it’s modern times,

Not everyone is lucky enough to have farm to table meals, although that is best. You’re trying to make money for the family not stand around a cooker all day. There are times when this can be done like the weekends but weekdays it’s best to have meals planned and prepped if time is limited.

If possible, do try to make meal times a special family time. Make sure that everyone is around the dining room table at dinner time. This a quality time event that everyone should look forward to with great food, great conversation and great company.

It’s the perfect opportunity to share and swap stories and ask questions of the days activities.

6) Set Up a Kid-Friendly Work Area

When kids are of a certain age they like to know that you are within easy reach. Set up a little corner near your workstation where they too can work from – containing construction paper, the must-have washable pens, glue sticks, and books so that the kids can explore their creativity.

Super Simple Ways to Work from Home with Kids. Easy and practical steps to make your work from home job a success.

If noise doesn’t affect you while you work download their favorite games and songs and have a few of their favorite books nearby. Better yet, why not get them a toy laptop so they can feel like they’re busy working from home just like you.

7) Get Family and Friends Involved

Have your partner assist you by entertaining the kids when they get home from work. If the kids are at a good age where they can help out then let them.

Putting laundry away, washing the dishes and making their own beds won’t be too difficult for them. Have the grandparents take them for a couple of hours if nearby, arrange playdates with kids of friends and family. Use this working time wisely.

8) Offer Rewards

Based on the week’s plan offer an incentive such as a walk by the beach, the river or a trip to the park or help you bake something or make a craft item. This breaks up the day and they won’t feel like they’re being ignored.

9) Set Some Ground Rules

You saw the video above, it can be a bit stressful when they are of a certain age but you have to introduce some ground rules as early as you can. Here are 3 easy ones:

  1. If in the home office (this can be the spare bedroom or even a corner of the dining room screened off during working hours – a great way to also hide clutter) get them to knock before entering.
  2. If you are on the phone, make sure to teach them to wait a moment, say excuse me please and not make demands and not to shout.
  3. Teach them how to tell the time early. So if you say “give me 10 minutes” you both stick to the agreement.

10) Don’t Pressure Yourself

It’s unlikely that when you start working at home with the kids that you’ll be able to do a 40-60 hour week.

It’s also very unlikely that you will be on top of all the household chores. Plus I’m sure the aim of working from home is not to do long hours. Be realistic and wise with your time, you’re not Superwoman or Superman.

11) Relax With the Family

Spend some time with the kids. They grow up so fast that you don’t want to miss too much. Taking some time away from your desk can actually make you more productive.

Take or schedule in 30 minutes or so to just be goofy and play. Do some messy art, play some board games or have a dance party. You’ll be glad you did and so will they. You just never know what fresh idea you will get just by taking a break.

12) Have Some Me Time

Wouldn’t it be great just for once to go to the bathroom without one of the kids knocking on the door saying they want something. I swear they do this on purpose! 

With that scenario wouldn’t it be great to create some work-life balance for yourself?

Try to arrange, if it’s even an hour on the weekend to do absolutely no work. Not for your partner, your kids. Let someone else take the strain. Go for an early morning walk or run BY YOURSELF. Meet up with a friend, go to the library, get a mani-pedi done. Just make sure to do something for yourself.

Some well-deserved and much-needed selfcare is always important for staying sane and recharging your energy levels.

13) Most importantly, Don’t Lose Sight of Your Goal!

If you have any other suggestions to add to this list I would love if you add them in the comment section below. Don’t forget to share this post with others or pin it for later.

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Monday 6th of April 2020

As a work at home mom I found these super helpful! Such great tips and ones I will be trying out!

Diane Teamworkdream

Monday 6th of April 2020

So glad you found these work at home tips with kids useful.

Rebecca @ Busy Mom Smart Mom

Monday 6th of April 2020

Working from home with kids is no joke and I'm sure it's been an eye-opener for quite a few parents with kids being out of school for so long now. You definitely need to have a plan and a routine for your days, otherwise, it's all going off the rails.

Diane Teamworkdream

Monday 6th of April 2020

It's definitely a real learning curve working at home with kids.

Melissa Kleier

Saturday 8th of February 2020

These are great tips! I definitely need to save these for later!


Saturday 8th of February 2020

Excellent article. I have been trying to balance both for a while and you definitely provide some great tips in here that I am definitely going to try.


Wednesday 5th of February 2020

Such a great article! I run my own business and used to have my daughter at home with me before she started school. It was super stressful but by being organised (most of the time) I managed it x

Comments are closed.