The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has caused disruptions in family and financial life of people around the world. Remote working, school closures, online classes, social distancing – it’s a lot to take in, especially for parents.
Parenting has always been a challenge. Homeschooling, working from home, and financial insecurity – these changes have been brought upon us due to the pandemic, making the role of a parent even more challenging.
During these unprecedented times, where fear and anxiety are prevalent, parents need to handle the situation appropriately. The top 3 things that should concern any parent at this time are health, online classes and finance. In this article, we’ll talk about how you can manage these things easily with proper awareness and planning:
Encourage your family to follow personal hygiene measures to avoid contracting and spreading the virus. Ensure that your family follows these measures:
- Wear a mask in public places
- Avoid touching the face –eyes, nose and mouth.
- Cover mouth and nose with tissue or elbow when sneezing and coughing. Dispose of the used tissue immediately and adequately.
- Maintain a distance of at least 1 meter from people.
- Be alert for any symptoms of COVID-19. Seek medical care early if symptoms develop.
- Wash hands, frequently with soap and water for at least 20-30 seconds. Use hand sanitizer if soap and water are inaccessible.
2. E-learning and Schoolwork
The coronavirus pandemic has thrown most parents into the role of a homeschool teacher. It’s a difficult situation to be in, especially when you have other responsibilities to take care of. Keeping track of your children’s assignments while ensuring that they are not stressed can be challenging. Here are a few tips that can help you manage better:
- Get in touch with the school teacher. Let them know what’s working and what isn’t working with online classes and home tutoring. They may be able to help you come up with a more individualized learning plan.
- Reach out to other parents via phone, email, or social media. Collaborating with other parents may make you feel less isolated. You can also share and exchange tips for keeping kids engaged and focused.
- Get creative with lessons.Do a science experiment with them; Give them the freedom to study according to their strengths. For example, if your child loves to draw and write, allow them to use pencils and paper freely.
- Create a learning routine to give your child a sense of normalcy during this uncertain time. Make room for flexibility and downtime in their routine. Create a workspace for your child, if possible.
- Set goals and rewards their accomplishments.
Here are a few steps you can take to provide financial security for you and your family.
- Increase emergency fund. Ideally, saving three to six months’ worth of expenses in an emergency fund is ideal. But to get through the pandemic situation, try saving a year’s worth of expenses. If necessary, trim nonessential expenses and put more money towards building your emergency fund.
- Don’t disrupt your savings or long-term investments. You’re not alone if you are financially unprepared for these times. If you don’t have an emergency fund, it might be tempting to dig into your savings or investments. But don’t do that. Instead, keep a personal line of credit Use it only when you need it. Be mindful not to spend the line of credit on frivolous expenses.
- Do a budget makeover. Your top priority right now should be ensuring that all your essential expenses are taken care of. Reevaluate your budget to find new ways to cover essential costs and conserve cash for emergencies.
- Avoid selling your investments. You might have seen the value of your portfolios decrease, and the stock market will continue to experiencesuch volatility. But, don’t make the mistake of selling your investments. Keep your investments intact. Historically, the stock market is known to recover eventually.
Lily Tran is a content writer, working for MoneyTap, who writes about all things Finance. Her passion for credit, debt, loan & investment drives her to help readers get an insight about everyday finance. You can follow Lily on Facebook and Instagram.