The summer holidays - kids love 'em, parents hate 'em! Although it is great for the kids to have time off during the nice weather and a chance to recharge their batteries, school holidays can be a nightmare for working parents.
Organising your time
During the school holidays, your routines are thrown out and everything that worked well and was organised before needs rethinking. Short of taking time off to care for your children, here are some ideas to make things easier for you.
Look into summer clubs
There are many clubs and summer schools available in the summer holidays which can take the pressure off you. Some specialise in certain sports or interests such as football and some are great all-rounders, aimed at helping mums and dads who have to work during the holidays. Your child's school may even be putting on some holiday clubs so check there first. Most clubs can be used as little or as much as you like so whether you only need your child to attend for a few days or for the whole summer there will be one suitable for you.
Talk to your friends and family
If you are really struggling, explain your problems to close friends and family and see whether they are able to help. Even if someone can only take your kids for a day a week that may be all you need. Make sure you always leave your kids with someone you trust and who has looked after them before, or at least knows your children well enough to be alone with them.
Talk to work
Employers know how difficult it is for families during the holidays and so may allow you to bring your children into work if they behave. This would be a great way to carry on with your job knowing where they are and what they are doing. Many children will sit quietly in a room with a colouring book or their games console until you have finished your day but make sure they are happy to do this — otherwise they could become naughty and start misbehaving. You could also discuss the possibility of working from home during the summer holidays. Many employers are happy to allow this these days as the internet makes working remotely much easier and the kids will be happy as they are in their own environment.
Look into professional childcare
There are many options available when it comes to childcare from nannies to childminders to day nurseries. They all have one purpose — to look after your child and make sure they are safe and comfortable when you can't yourself. Some families are eligible for a contribution from the government towards their childcare fees when both parents have to work, so look into this before you shell out for it yourself. If you want to go down this route, make sure you check out the person or organisation thoroughly before you enrol your child and always give your child a trial period to make sure they are happy with the arrangement.