This blog post is made possible by Sara Stringer, site supporter.
Going back to school can be tough, especially if you're a stay-at-home mum. Between picking up the kids from school, cleaning the house and cooking twice a day, the idea of going back to school looks somewhat bleak for some mums.
However, you don't have to be super-mum to juggle housework, kids and college. It just takes organisation, dedication and some getting used to. If you're a mum looking to go back to school, here are a few friendly tips that can help you balance college and home life:
Making the Decision
First of all, you have to determine if it's the best time to go back to school. Understand that once you enroll, you have to be as committed to school as you are to your home life. Also, consider whether or not college fees can result in a budgetary strain for you and your family.
Financial Aid and Scholarships
When considering going back to school, it's always recommended to apply for financial aid. Whether you think you qualify or not, it always helps to apply - you'll never know unless you do. Some schools also provide scholarships for returning students or parents. Make sure to research which scholarship is right for you.
Identify Your Interest
If you're going back to school, the last thing you want to do is waste time by adding classes that you don't need. Before you begin, have a clear picture of the field you're most interested in. Pick a major, and stick to it.
When you enroll, make sure you can handle your course load. For stay-at-home mums with major responsibilities, it's best to start the first semester as a part-time student. This way, you can get an idea of how much schoolwork you can handle. Also, make sure to register for classes that work around your schedule. Don't register for classes and "try" to make it. If you're taking an 9 a.m. class, be absolutely certain you can commit to it.
In high school, it was common for teachers to assign homework, the same applies to college courses. Although your professors may not always require you to turn in "homework" per se, most classes do require students to read a chapter or two before every class meeting. Most parents find it easier to do their readings or school work while their kids are sleeping or busy with other activities. Make sure to schedule time frame accordingly.
The Adjustment Period
Adjusting to school can be difficult, but practice makes perfect. If you're planning on going back to school, chances are you'll be attending for more than one semester. If your first semester seems too hard to manage, make changes to your course load or schedule. Learn what works and what doesn't.
Sometimes, it may be best to consider alternative forms of education, which can include hybrid classes (half online and half on campus) and online classes. Recently, schools around the world have been adjusting their curriculum to better suit distance learning classes. Now it's possible to take language, communication and even health-related courses like diagnostic medical sonography classes online. Online classes adjust to any schedule, making it a convenient way to finish your Bachelor's or Master's degree.
You don't have to be super-mum to go back to school, you just need to be organised, learn to adjust if you need to and know your educational options. Going back to school can be challenging, but if you're disciplined and determined, any stay-at-home mum can do it!
Sara is a freelance writer who enjoys blogging about lifestyle, relationships, and life as a woman. In her spare time, she enjoys soaking up the sunshine with her husband and two kids.
Image of Mum with books courtesy of stock images / www.freedigitalphotos.net