Many women think about returning to school once they have had children, either to help gain a promotion or to switch to a career which offers them more flexibility when it comes to working around their families. However, a lot of women are put off. Studying, while raising a family, can be incredibly difficult, not to mention expensive. Fortunately, there are ways to make it easier, and even enjoyable. If you have had a career break to have children, you might find the challenge of learning again rewarding and exhilarating.
Study Online: Online study, such as an online LLM degree, could give you some fantastic options to study flexibly, around your family, at a pace that suits you. You may be able to have a day to study alone and then just do bits at other times. Or, you may choose to study once the children have gone to bed. When you’re not tied to class times, it really is up to you. Try and find a routine that works for you and your family. Online study also has the added bonus of being cheaper, with more flexible payment options.
Ask for Help: If at any point you find you are struggling, speak to your tutor about taking some time off, or getting some extra tuition. Then, there is also help at home. This can come in many different forms. You might need your partner to take some of the pressure off you by helping out around the house more or taking the kids out on his own for the day. Or, you might have friends and family that can help out with childcare occasionally. If you feel you are struggling for support, consider hiring a professional childminder for a few hours a week so you can study.
Be Organized: Being organized will help you immensely. Plan everything as far in advance as you possibly can. If the children have appointments or meetings, make sure you work more before, so you can take time out. If you have exams for deadlines approaching, make sure you have extra childcare arranged. Then, there are the little everyday things. You will be amazed at how much time you can save by making some tiny changes, such as preparing pack lunches the night before and laying out everyone’s clothes before bed. Get older children to help with things like this – make it a game.
Look After Yourself: You’ll be a much better parent, and student, if you take care of yourself. This means eating a healthy, balanced diet, getting a little exercise every day, making sure you get enough sleep, and having the occasional break. Take a few days away from your studies when you start to feel stressed out, and enjoy just being with your family.
Whatever you are thinking about studying whether it’s an online masters of laws to a teaching degree, don’t be put off by the idea that you won’t have time, or it will be too difficult.
There is plenty of help available, both from your prospective school, and your family and friends. Have a go. It might well be the best thing you ever do.