How on Earth Does Working Moms Manage To Attend Daytime School Events?
I often catch myself wondering if schools are built around at least one parent not working full time.
Dealing with the competing demands of daytime school events plus meetings and deliverables in the office is a reality for working moms and dads.
We have puzzle mornings taking place this term and parents are encouraged to sign up and join in (sessions are 7h30am – 08h45am). A well-meaning comment from someone (I am not mentioning names but you know who you are): “are you only doing one puzzle morning, I see moms’ names down four to five times.”
Hold your horses buddy; I don’t look at what other parents do. I look at what I can do based on my circumstances.
I am sorry, I cannot just attend stuff happening at 8 am whenever I feel like it.I will do what I can based on my circumstances. I will not compare myself to other parents. Comparison is the thief of joy. Click To Tweet
Do not forget the important stuff
You don’t want your child to be the one child who did not wear slippers on Slipper Day (I did not forget this, by the way, it is merely an example).
Once I forgot that it was Barefoot Day (the fact that this is a thing was news to me). Thankfully, this was quite easily solved – her shoes were just removed. Close one!
Then there is the omniscient Newsletter
Our weekly Newsletter is an all important document. I have dubbed it: The Newsletter of Truth.
The Newsletter Of Truth pretty much controls my life. I look forward to reading it on a Friday afternoon!
Newsletter of Truth Rules
- If something is not in the Newsletter, it is not happening *
- If something is in The Newsletter, it is happening *
- If you have a question, first check The Newsletter
*No one can override the Newsletter of Truth, no one.
I joke, but in all fairness, the newsletter is packed with important information. Such as show and tell themes for that week and any other things they need to bring to school. It really is zero effort to read it.
Top Tip: Buy a kiddie encyclopedia (with lots of pictures). This will cover the most show and tell topics.
Now, on a serious note. Although I like ranting and raving about the school stuff, I do enjoy taking part in my child’s education.
I don’t see education as something happening in school with a teacher. Education happens in school with parents and caregivers participating. It also happens at home.
Here is what I have learned over the last few years. I am a work in progress and by no means achieve this all the time.
What Working Moms Ought To Know About Attending Daytime School Events
Plan ahead of time
A calendar is issued ahead of time (termly or monthly) allows parents to plan ahead. When you get the calendar, block out your work diary asap. The keyword here is ‘work diary.’ Not your personal google calendar.
Just block it out, and you can then work around that time. If any work meetings has to be scheduled, people will see that you are busy! And then you are in control of what you can and cannot make.
You can always work around work commitments and then decide which school events you can make.
You may not attend the school baking day, but you would prefer to attend the sports day as you regard this as more important. It is okay to pick and choose the ones that you will attend.
Share the load
If both parents are up for it, you can make an arrangement where each parents takes a turn to attend a school function.
Currently, my husband and I split the school daytime events where it makes sense for us. Although, I do a bit more events as he takes the children to the doctor. That is what works for us right now.
Open communication with the teacher
Chat with your child’s school teacher at the start of the term about what you can and cannot make.
Teachers can step in and take care of kids whose parents don’t arrive. I have seen it at school functions where the teacher steps in. In this way, it is still a fun day for the children.
Yes, it is very challenging. However, active participation in our child’s schooling is essential. So, we need to make a plan.
Some moments are priceless – and trade offs will be needed
I always think, I am not making the mothers tea at school, but I am making a meeting at work (let’s be honest, all meetings are not equally important). Where will be my presence make the most impact?
Seeing the joy on my daughter’s face when I catch her eye as she is sitting in class. I watch her as she nudges her friend next to her and tells her friend ‘There is MY mommy‘. That is priceless.
Yes we want to excel at work and pay the bills, but I think we should try. Booking leave is an option if we need to. And prioritize the most important events.
But try we have to.
How do you manage to attend daytime school events?Some moments are priceless - and trade offs will be needed to experience those moments Click To Tweet