Being a single mom and attending college on a full time basis requires juggling skills, resilience, and a whole lot of determination. Managing a house, the kids and your academic career can really take it out of you unless you are exceptionally good at planning, scheduling and all things organizational.
Once you’ve made the decision to head back to school, you’ll want to meet with a guidance counselor to pick classes and find a schedule that works for you. If your kids are old enough to attend school themselves, ideally your classes would be scheduled for the same window of time. It is probable that you will not be in class every minute your children are in school. This can become valuable time.
Scheduling Free Time
Periods between classes are perfect for doing research and getting a start on any homework. If you have a morning or afternoon free or even a whole day, that becomes your time slot for errands and household chores. You might even want to schedule some batch cooking for those childless hours so you can enjoy your time with the kids.
If the free time between classes isn’t enough to adequately cover your studies, you will need to schedule time at home to get your homework done. If you have school age children, you can do it together. Set a time, perhaps after dinner, to sit down and quietly do your homework together. You will set an excellent example for your kids by role-modeling good student skills for them.
If you have very young children, they probably take naps or go to bed considerably earlier than you do. Seize these opportunities to complete assignments and catch up on any reading.
You may need to schedule play dates or hire a babysitter to watch the kids while you cram for school. Older children can sometimes be relied upon to watch younger siblings but over the long haul, this gets old fast. Play dates with a friend, at their house so you can study at home, can be scheduled each week, particularly if you are on good terms with the parents.
Call on family and possibly even the children’s father to keep the kids one or two evenings a week so you can study. If you are truly determined, you can work this out.