As a stay-at-home parent, you know that one day you would want to return to the workforce and continue to pursue your career goals. However, jumping back to the market after a long, silent break would be quite challenging and disadvantageous, judging that all industries are changing constantly. That’s why more and more stay-at-home parents are turning to online learning as a proper solution to balance their time at home while keeping themselves more marketable for a successful comeback.
Almost all industries are competitive by nature and it is extremely vital that you equip yourself with the right qualifications and skills set to pick up from where you left or (in some cases) to venture into a whole new career path. That is when online learning becomes a feasible option to consider. Online course providers have continuously expanded their offerings to the point that you can literally learn anything while enjoying the comfort of your sofa. The course lists range from soft, transferable skills (e.g. communication, leadership, negotiation…) to technical, specialist classes (e.g. medical reception, interior design, beauty therapy…).
Attending those online courses as a stay-at-home parent could, surprisingly, also be a big plus to your résumé. It shows prospective employers how dedicated, determined and committed you are towards your career goals. That sweeps out all stereotypical assumptions such as: you have been out of the industry for too long or your skills get rusted with…diapers, milk, wheelbarrow for kids.
Taking care of your kids is a laborious and sweaty full-time job. Online learning, fortunately, offers a precious break from the younger ones without sacrificing your own schedule. Many online courses now allow self-paced learning in which you could study anywhere, anytime, for as long as you need to absorb the lessons with the online support of the tutor. That means no more emotional struggle whether to attend the class or to take your kid to the park, to cook food first or to prioritise the pending assignments. In addition, having several hours to study favorite subjects at your convenience will keep everyday from being repetitive, make life as a stay-at-home parent less stressful and increase confidence, self-achievement.
Income and finance are causes for concern for families with a stay-at-home parent. Because of this, many are reluctant to seek continuing education which is known to be quite pricey. That is not the case with online learning, which is considerably cheaper than most in-class models. Course providers even offer flexible, interest-free payment plans so that you can break up and pay off your tuition weekly or monthly. Virtual learning at home also means you can still take care of your kids on a daily basis, hence remove the extra costs of hiring a nanny or sending kids to daycare.
A complimentary yet considerable benefit of online learning for stay-at-home parents is how the practice encourages lifelong learning among family members. By learning dedicatedly, you act as a role model for your little ones on the importance of education and determination. Some online courses employ the lastest technology to maximise interaction through virtual reality lessons, exercises on mobile apps… That turns completing assignments into a family activity full of joy and sharing moments.
Promising and exciting as it may sound, learning online as a stay-at-home parent still requires thorough preparation to make it work. Maintaining “study – kid balance” varies from family to family, but there are some formula factors you need to consider first:
Getting through your coursework while running household chores definitely requires careful planning in advance. Buy yourself a planner and delegate tasks into time slots for a whole week so you won’t miss anything. The best practice here is to arrange your study time and other activities around kids’ schedule and leave enough flexible time to balance when necessary.
Motivation is like the fuel for your online learning as a stay-at-home parent. Try breaking your weekly coursework into small patches so you won’t be procrastinated. Once in a while, reward yourself with a special treat. In the end, you are learning as a stay-at-home parent and it is quite an achievement. In case of stress or difficulty, do not hesitate to seek help from your partner, family members or friends. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness; it takes bravery to reach out when you’re overwhelmed.
Learning doesn’t mean sitting at your desk and staring to the screen. Think of daily activities that can involve studying, for example: listening to recorded lectures while preparing food for kids or completing a quick test on the phone while waiting for the laundry. Fortunately, online lessons come in all kinds of format that allow you to study on the go and with ease.