Working from home with children

Tips to manage work while supporting children at home    

Talk to your children and make a plan

  • Begin by asking your children how they feel and share your own feelings.  
  • Make a plan together for how you will each do your daily activities. 
  • Talk to your children about breaks and how you will spend free time together.  
  • Use “when-then” statements such as “when my work is done, then we can play”. 
  • Minimize distractions by designating spaces, using headphones and reminding children of the plan. 

Set realistic expectations

  • Be reasonable in what you expect of you and your children. Expect progress not perfection. 
  • Be patient. Show kindness to you and your children. 
  • Use reminders to stay on track but be flexible and willing to change the plan as needed. 
  • Celebrate the wins, no matter how small.  

Focus on the positive

  • Notice the good things happening around us such as spending more time together as a family and the many acts of kindness.  
  • Think about what you are thankful for right now. Gratitude helps us to focus on the good. 
  • Find humour each day. Allow yourself to smile or laugh especially in difficult times.    

Make self-care a priority

  • Schedule breaks and check in with your children. 
  • Stretch and step away from the computer.  
  • Use relaxation or self-care breaks to boost mood and productivity. 
  • After work, take a walk, do a crossword, or listen to music to create a buffer between work and before starting your home routine. 
  • Do activities you enjoy and spend time with family. 
  • Make a joy list and do something that brings you joy each day (e.g., read, listen to music, take a bath, call a friend, cook a meal, or get outdoors, etc.)  
  • Eat healthy, stay hydrated, move more and practice a good sleep routine. 
  • Check out the links on the next page to learn more ways to take care. 

Reach out, stay connected  

  • Connect with people such as friends, family, 
    co-workers and neighbours to remind us that we are not alone.  
  • Involve other members of your home in activities such as cooking and chores. Try cooking as a family activity or share the load with children by giving them age-appropriate chores.  
  • Ask for help. Reach out to teachers or others that can help your children with schoolwork. Reach out for parent support too.  

Helpful Phone Lines

Emergency  911 24 hours, 7 days/week 
Provincial Mental Health Crisis Line 1-888-737-4668 24 hours, 7 days/week
Crisis Text Line Text ‘Talk’ to 686868 24 hours, 7 days/week
Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868  24 hours, 7 days/week
CHANNAL Warm Line  1-855-753-2560  9:00 a.m. – 12:00 midnight
Mental Health and Addictions Systems Navigator
1-877-999-7589 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Monday – Friday
Domestic Violence Helpline Call or Text 1-888-709-7090  8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Monday – Friday
Provincial Opioid Toll-Free Line 1-844-752-3588
811 24 hours, 7 days/week 

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Last updated: 2022-01-12